Simon Woolf - How to become a professional wine writer @wbis2014
Why am I here?
Roederer International Wine Writing Awards
UK Ambassador for Vinisud 2014
Palate Press “best of” articles, two years running
What does professional mean?
1. a. Of, relating to, engaged in, or suitable for a
profession: lawyers, doctors, and other professional people.
b. Conforming to the standards of a profession: professional
2. Engaging in a given activity as a source of livelihood or as a
career: a professional writer.
3. Performed by persons receiving pay: professional football.
4. Having or showing great skill; expert: a professional repair job.
What does it mean for us?
You get paid
Standard of writing should be consistent,
assured & appropriate to the publication
Maintain your integrity
Why would you want to become one?
You get paid
Professional writers sometimes get taken
more seriously than bloggers
More access to press tastings and trips
Peer recognition and respect
Larger audience for your writing
Why wouldn't you want to become one?
You get paid – but not very much
Less freedom – have to adhere to house style
Editors may change what you write
You're subjected to closer scrutiny
How to do it – Method #1
Write from the heart
Develop your own style
Know your stuff – do your research
Improve your writing – take a course if
Read other writers and other subjects – learn
How to do it – Method #2
How to do it – Method #3
Network with wine trade professionals
Offer some free content to an online
Pitch articles to the publications you enjoy
Enter competitions for wine writing
Promote yourself in a professional manner,
on social media
How NOT to do it
Use “smileys” in all your tweets/fb
Slag off your colleagues
Brag about free samples you got or trips
you went on
Deliver your content late
Deliver content with too many words
Not spellchecking your work
Not writing in an appropriate style
Thanks / Get in touch!