Thursday: I delved deep into the rising cost of lettuce (+ more newly published stories, from eye cream to air fryer brownies!)
It’s a really rainy and not very pretty day in NYC today and I’m secretly rather glad that work has me glued to my couch (and indoors) for the foreseeable future.
Last night, I made a quick and easy Korean beef bowl for dinner (seriously, it was ready in 10 minutes!). I normally pair this with rice, but this time, I made it with some brown rice vermicelli I had picked up, and honestly, it was even better. Let me know if there’s interest and I’ll share the recipe in the comments below.
Tonight, I’m using that tuna that was sent to me yesterday to make a tuna poke bowl, and I’m so excited…will be sharing that recipe on Instagram later!
But in today’s work news…
It’s not all that often these days that I get to feel like an old-school proper journalist and do some honest-to-goodness authentic interviewing and reporting…it’s just not the nature of the beast in this era.
Sometimes I can’t help but wonder what our college journalism professors would think of the times we are now in, as the focus seems to so often away from telling those heartfelt important stories that reflect or impact people’s actual lives, and more about profit and the bottom line…
So much of our assignments are shopping-related or roundups, which at times (while I’m grateful for the work and those are sometimes totally fun to work on!) can feel a bit formulaic.
Speaking of formulaic in another way, look at all the discussion regarding AI right now. At its core, a very real argument can be made that it has the dangerous potential to be the root of organizational widespread plagiarism, both in an educational and editorial setting. (In fact, this ZDNet article very succinctly touches on that…)
All that said, as someone who has their degree in journalism, and has spent 20+ years working in the field, I’m very excited when I get to do…well…actual journalism.
This week I had the opportunity to do a story for Yahoo Life about the ongoing lettuce shortage, and I feel really good about how it came out — and I even share my own tip for still getting a pretty sweet deal on my go-to romaine hearts…
Also new today — everyone knows I’m all about the air fryer, and it boggles my mind that people still think it’s a thing that just exists for “fried” foods, such as wings and fries. It actually can do everything your oven can do — including dessert. Today for The Kitchn, I share how to use it to make adorable little brownie cups!
There’s a few other new stories that have published since yesterday, and you can see them all in the newly published stories section below.
Newly published or freshly updated
Since people are often asking about the status of stories from a while ago, and I only share stories in this newsletter that were published or updated in the current week, I have created a list of my author pages at various publications to which I contribute. Bookmark it and make your life a bit easier.
This list will live on my Substack URL and be updated as necessary. That way, you can see what I’m doing at any publication, at any time, from types of stories to general structure of stories to even volume and frequency of my content at that outlet.
This can also help you to target pitching a bit better. That makes your job easier, and mine too!
TODAY.com: Wrinkles, dark circles and dryness are no match for these drugstore eye creams
The Kitchn: These Single-Serve Brownie Cups Are Perfect for Valentine’s Day — And You Can Make Them in Your Air Fryer
Yahoo Life: Is lettuce getting more expensive? Experts explain the shortage and share alternatives to leafy greens.
RetailMeNot: 14 Best Galentine’s Day Gifts for Your BFFs
RetailMeNot: Affordable Valentine’s Day Gifts That Show Lots of Love on a Budget
Food Network: Dolly Parton Is Bringing More Mixes to Her Duncan Hines Southern Baking Line
TODAY.com: 10 drugstore wrinkle creams experts say are worth it — starting at $11
YourTango: 15 Teachers Reveal The Weirdest Things Their Students Have Ever Said
Forbes: Valentine’s Day Gift Guide: The Best Aphrodisiacs To Gift
Forbes: Valentine’s Day Gift Guide: The Best Global Specialty Ingredients For The Culinary Traveler
Forbes: It's Time To Plan Our Wine Pairings For Valentine's Day Dinner
YourTango: 7 Sneaky Ways Traveling Actually Makes You Healthier, Says Science
The Kitchn: I Tried the McBaguette Recipe from “Emily in Paris” and It’s the Chic Upgrade to a Cheeseburger That I Can’t Stop Eating
Food Network: Kelly Clarkson and The Jonas Brothers Collaborate On New Salty Snack
HelloGiggles: 9 New Products That Will Help You Be Healthier in 2023
Forbes: 30 Romantic Cocktails To Set The Mood On Valentine’s Day
If you or your client are featured in any of these stories, I super appreciate any social media shares! Please remember to tag @alywalansky and the outlet.
Here’s what I’m working on:
Be sure to read the below list carefully. Many are stories I posted about yesterday, but some of yesterday's stories are no longer listed and a few new ones have been added since yesterday. This (below) is everything that is still a currently open opportunity as of today.
Please remember when pitching me: Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org - do NOT just hit reply on this newsletter, or there’s a good shot your email will be lost in the heap. Give your email a subject line that makes it clear which story you are pitching me for — it’ll help you in the long run.
Please consult my industry insights guides on submitting expert commentary, sending emails that will catch a journalist’s attention, how to craft pitches journalists will say ‘yes’ to, and the right and wrong way to submit photos, if you need any extra guidance before sending your pitches.
Here’s what I’m currently working on for Valentine’s Day:
The best gifts for a romantic dinner at home
The best luxury seafood boxes
The best interactive gifts for couples who love to cook together
For all of these guides (and honestly, most guides for any outlet, I would prefer all pitches be sent in the following format):
Name of product
link where sold, price
Description of product
LINK to high res image
*please please make sure that an item is not discontinued, and is currently available and in stock to ship and arrive before Valentine’s Day before pitching me. Sound obvious? I got a LOT of holiday pitches that did not fit this qualification!
Looking to up your affiliate marketing game?
Affiliate marketing is complicated, and it seems that the landscape keeps changing. If you are looking to be prepared for gift guide season and all other shopping-related content, you may want to try the Ultimate Masterclass and Introduction to Affiliate Marketing for Publicists. It's a brilliant course and it'll answer all your questions (including some you didn't know you had!)
Virtual consulting sessions...
Looking for a consult as you plan your next event or trip? Or just want someone to take a look at the pitches you’ve been sending and give some feedback?
I've been popping into a lot of PR team virtual meetings and some other fun stuff (Recently I even joined in on an agency’s team retreat right here in Brooklyn — it was so fun and I made so many new friends!) and making myself available to answer all sorts of questions about pitching, events, and trips from a media perspective. I like to keep these things chill and comfortable and relaxed all by sharing perspective and learning from one another.
If you are interested in setting anything up for your own team in the coming months, please email me and we'll get something on the books! This is available for entire agencies or smaller group lunch and learn type concepts. If you are a freelance publicist and want to join in with a few other freelance publicist friends and set something up, we can do that as well!
The bulgogi bowl looks sooo good! I’d love the recipe please
Was wondering what the heck was going on with lettuce! And love that you mention Glasspar -- right around the corner from where I live!