Discover more from Aly Walansky's Newsletter
Tuesday: Gearing up for Halloween (and everything on tap on this witches' brew of a week)
…and no, I’m not actively celebrating, but back in my day, I was the creator of some epic costumes when the occasion merited.
After an interesting few days in Memphis, I’m back in New York City and gearing up for a busy week — and counting down to a Dallas trip in just a few weeks (where I hope to be running into quite a few of you!).
In honor of Halloween, I wanted to share a story I wrote for Forbes - some spooky cocktails to get in you the spirit of the occasion. And if you are done with that pumpkin decor and ready to start carving, check out my story for Southern Living on how to make air fryer roasted pumpkin seeds! (It’s quick and delish - it’s actually my go-to airport snack these days…)
I’ve been in something of a funk lately, as have many of us, and it’s not been so easy to snap myself out of it.
This morning, though, the door rang, and it was a special personal breakfast delivery from PopUp Bagels - I’ve been eager to try them for ages (they have something of an epic NYC cult following these days and people literally pre-order bagels or wait in line in the rain for them, they are THAT coveted) and it was very exciting and we hope…maybe will set this day off on a good (at least we know it’s tasty!) foot!
Not that I think a good bagel can solve the world’s problems…but as a nice Jewish gal from Brooklyn (the bagel capital of the world, as it is), I certainly appreciate it’s a way to set the day off on the right foot.
Remember, friends: At the end of the day, the little things really do matter a lot. Sometimes, when the world seems dark and sad and hopeless, we have to hold on to those small things that make us smile and give us joy.
I have a lot to do this week, from wrapping up a few to HGGs to dinners with dear friends two nights in a row…making this a special week. Lets try to make it a good one (or at least, better than the last few have been!).
And, remember, if you need someone to talk to about your own ups and downs…you always have an ear in me.
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!
Buy my cookbook!
I contributed a recipe and some commentary to a Jewish recipes cookbook and the 100% of the proceeds go to JFSLA, and earmarked for Food & Hunger Programs specifically. Order it here.
PS: I love doing podcasts!
My latest podcast appearance, on the Media In Minutes podcast, is now live! This was a really fun one:
I recently recorded a guest appearance on the True Story public relations podcast with Whitney Lee, and we chatted about everything from pitching to press tours and how to build a more personal connection (more important now than ever).
Recently, I was also a guest on the Eat.Drink.Social podcast, and we chatted about my upcoming travel, recent press trip experiences, and so much more. Check out my guest appearance a little while ago on Jamie Stone’s A Little Too Much podcast. We had SO much fun discussing everything from the changing landscape of events and trips to our thoughts on some emerging food and cocktail trends.
Some of my latest podcast appearances include Media Circus Podcast with Taiisha Bradley, as well as the Italian Wine Podcast, where we discussed all things Substack, and the Coffee N° 5 podcast, where we chatted about effective strategies for promoting emerging brands to journalists and securing media coverage. Other recent podcast appearances include the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ podcast with the incredible (and super fun!) Lexie Smith, where we covered everything from press dinners and events and trips to, well, sippin’!
I’ve recorded a few others that should be live soon as well and I’m always open to doing more — email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taste of Home: This Butter Hack Is Going Viral and You Need to Try It
Reader’s Digest: The 24 Most Haunted Hotels in America
Martha Stewart Living: 13 Small Space Storage Ideas That Find a Place for Everything
Southern Living: Air Fryer Pumpkin Seeds
Southern Living: Can You Eat The Skin Of Delicata Squash?
Martha Stewart Living: How to Store Your Clothes If You Don't Have a Closet
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 email@example.com - 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.
For Forbes, I’m looking for spots online offering some variant of “Thanksgiving in a box” that you can have shipped to you in time for the holiday - this can be either cooked and complete meals you just reheat and serve or recipe kits.
National Pickle Day is coming up and Aly Walansky LOVES pickles. So, tell me all the fun pickle dishes AND cocktails you have at your restaurants. I don’t care if it’s a pickle martini or a pickle pizza, I’m listening. Please pitch me with the name of the dish, where it’s available (restaurant name, city, state), description, quote about dish, and an image of the dish via a link to a dropbox…thanks!
I’m also working on THREE holiday gift guides (and I am so happy to say you do NOT need to be on any sort of affiliate network to pitch for these! This will hopefully widen the net and give some smaller brands with creative, unique products a shot to be included!).
The best meaty gifts for the meat lover - So online butcher steak boxes, the wagyu, the porterhouses, the ribeyes. All the beefy gift sets you can order online and have shipped.
The best pink kitchen items for the Barbie lover -- Barbie is still HUGE and anyone who loves Barbie will probably want all the best pink dinnerware/kitchenware/appliances this holiday season.
The best gifts for the sushi lover -- So, fun DIY sushi kits. But also maybe fun mail order sushi grade fish, chopsticks, good wasabi or soy sauce or rice, or even sushi themed socks and stuff like that.
To pitch for any of these, please remember to include ALL the following:
Name of product
link where sold, price
image of product
I’m working on two freezer related explainers - Can You Freeze Celery? and also Can You Freeze Green Onions? - and I’d love some chefs and RDs and food safety experts to weigh in.
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 (and now in-person!) 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’m available for PR team virtual meetings to answer questions about pitching, events, and trips from a media perspective. Note: I’m also available to travel for consulting sessions as long as travel expenses are covered. We can chat! This is available for entire agencies or smaller group lunch and learn type concepts.
Have a great day!