We had the good fortune of connecting with Rachel Werner and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Rachel, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?

Honestly, it was because of financial need. I first started freelance writing ten years ago as a side gig to working in the fitness industry full-time as an instructor, trainer and model. I was going through a divorce while raising my daughter (who was a toddler at the time). After I was awarded sole custody, I needed to find a way to make more money that also wouldn’t increase my childcare costs. So I decided to pursue writing since it was one of the skills I had that could potentially be monetized.

Two years later, a women’s lifestyle magazine I’d been writing for brought me on staff as an assistant editor, where I helped produce culinary, arts and beauty features in addition to live event coverage for four years. This helped me gain the experience and connections I needed to continue to expand my “writing side hustle.” Eventually I would also contribute print, photography and video content to TheKitchn, The Spruce Eats, Fabulous Media Group, Entrepreneurial Chef and Hobby Farms Magazine.

All of that combined gave me enough expertise to then start teaching writing and marketing-related workshops specifically for those pursuing creative careers. I have now presented at The Highlights Foundation; University of Wisconsin-Madison; and during “Write to Publish” (a one-day conference hosted by Ooligan Press at Portland State University); San Diego Writers’ Ink; and several library systems throughout the Midwestern United States.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I don’t live in Lake Geneva. But I take a mini-getaway there at least once a year. So if you ever decide to visit Wisconsin, I recommend savoring a night cap at the hidden speakeasy or apothecary bar at Maxwell Mansion, an upscale B&B walking distance to the shoreline and downtown. Also if you are an early riser—and your java cravings tend to kick in shortly after sunrise—pop by Inspired Coffee on Main Street before starting the journey home. Every purchase directly helps to fund its ongoing mission of providing training, coaching and employment for individuals with cognitive and physical disabilities. A fantastic reason to support this small business…and return to this resort town as regularly as I do.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?

My time as an Alive Academy student surpassed my expectations from start to finish. The courses, although challenging at times, provided a level of higher education which I needed to grow my career—and gave me the professional credentials to secure my first cookbook deal. The Applied Nutrition course material greatly expanded my scientific and medical knowledge as a wellness professional. It also has given me the capacity to pitch myself as a “ source” to other writers and media outlets who need commentary or advice from experts for articles, podcasts or blog posts. Plus I now regularly create content for clients about nutrition concepts I learned about while getting my Certified Holistic Nutrition certification.
Current bio:
Rachel Werner is a teaching artist for Hugo House, The Loft Literary Center, and Lighthouse Writers Workshop, in addition to being the founder of The Little Book Project WI. In 2021, she was awarded an Excellence in Teaching Fellowship from The Loft and the Madeline Island School for the Arts. Her first cookbook “Macro Cooking Made Simple” (Chartwell Books) was released in April 2023. And Rachel’s debut science book for kids “Floods” is one of the titles in Capstone’s Wild Earth Series. Her next two books for younger readers, “Moving and Grooving to Fillmore’s Beat” (Capstone) and “Glow and Grow: A Brown Girl’s Positive Body Guide” (Free Spirit Publishing), are forthcoming in Fall 2023 and Fall 2024. Rachel is represented by Savannah Brooks at KT Literary Agency.

Website: https://rachelwerner.pressfolios.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/therealscript/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/therealscript/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/therealscripts

Other: TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@therealscript

Image Credits
*Office, living room and yoga shots: Alive Academy *Images with food: Anna Bisch-Sendelbach *book signing photo: Capstone

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