“For more than 20 years, I have been a force in the U.S. nutraceutical marketplace. I led brand marketing creation and introduction for such successful brands as CitriMax for InterHealth and Cognizin, Setria and Lumistor for Kyowa Hakko. Plus, I was responsible for major marketing communications programs that created huge revenue sources for such brands as Ostivone for TSI Group and Biotrol for the former Richardson Labs, as well other ingredients and retail products. Most recently, I have served as managing partner for the Baker Dillon Group and also as Director of Public Relations and Special Projects for Life Extension. For the past five years, I have penned the popular Health E-Insights in Nutraceuticals World magazine and on the publication’s website (www.NutraceuticalsWorld.com; health and wellness editor for Examiner.com in the San Francisco Bay Area; and the past two years produced the Healthy Talk radio show on RadioMD.com.”
Why did you decide to become a health writer?
My brand marketing career moved into the nutraceutical/dietary supplement industry and health and wellness writing naturally followed. I’ve had the opportunity to suggest column topics to publications that have been readily accepted over my many years in the nutraceutical marketplace.
How did you get your ‘big break’ as a health writer?
The first break was getting hired into the health and wellness industry as a publicist and having the opportunity to develop a strategic marketing plan that was the road map to introduce a new product that was an enormously successful product in the B2B and B2C marketplaces. Eventually, I approached Nutrition Industry Executive magazine about writing a monthly column about marketing. They liked the idea and I wrote for them for over two years. Other industry publications saw my writing and asked me to contribute stories.
What’s your best piece of advice for those who are considering a career in health writing or who are just starting out?
Know your strengths and limitations. Dig deep to determine what you like to write about and what excites you. For example, I enjoy interviewing celebrities, authors and other notables. I find a way to work these folks into my writing whenever possible.
What’s the most challenging topic you’ve ever had to cover?
Recently I had to ghost write a piece about prebiotic increases bifidobacteria levels, based on a recent study.
Deciphering the science behind a topic can be challenging. And if you’re interviewing a doctor who doesn’t speak in layman’s terms, it can often seem like they’re speaking in a foreign language.
What do you love most about health writing and why?
In retrospect, health writing has helped shape my career. It’s allowed me not only to be a writer, but a publicist, a radio producer and a talk show host – all focused on health topics and issues.
What inspires you in your career?
The feedback I get from people who read my stories or interviews or comment on the guests I book for a radio show. Whether it’s positive or negative, it tells me they’re paying attention to the information I’m putting out there.