CAREERS ADVICE: BETTY MAGAZINEAugust 24, 2012
Do you blog? Maybe you’re a secret wordsmith with no outlet or are dressing your dog up in your spare time. We know so many talented writers, stylists and photographers doing their thing and making it work, but how do you get started? It’s a dog-eat-dog world and knowing the best way to find your feet can be difficult when you’re starting out. That’s why we stopped off to mine the creative brain of Charlotte Jacklin, Northern-born Londoner and starter-upper of Betty Magazine, which is now seen gracing the shelves of stockists from here to Japan, and loved by everyone from Susie Bubble to Grazia.
How did you go about launching your own magazine?
It never started as an official launch – it’s all been the natural progression of a hobby that keeps on growing and keeps me busy. Now there is a small but talented team who dedicate their spare time to producing the magazine twice a year and updating the blog. We learn as we go and feel lucky that we are all working together.
How did you go about choosing a name?
Betty is the shortened name of my Grandma and the nickname of one of my best friends. Betty is also an old fashioned name that works in the modern world, the cheeky younger sister of Elizabeth.
Which magazines did you read when you were growing up?
From a young age I remember being interested in the old magazines that were on my Nanna’s shelf; old copies of Good Housekeeping and Jackie are some of what I can remember. Also, the types of magazines where you collected each issue to build up a collection – the introductory price was 99p and the next one £1.07 but after a few years I had a full scale model of the human body, a furnished doll house and book shelf of modern classics.
What did you do before creating Betty Magazine?
I have a day job alongside Betty. The other Charlotte – the creative director – works as an interiors stylist and I work in digital marketing. We’ve both worked for lots of magazines and designers between us so we have skills in different areas, which is why working together pans out so well.
What’s the coolest thing you’ve posted so far?
I don’t think I can select one thing! Though Natsumi Hayashi and Vivian Maier are some of my favourite photographers that have been featured – I find so much inspiration in their work.
What do you look for in a contributor?
All our contributors are extremely talented, I meet them either through a mutual friend or by chance and sometimes even from a speculative email, however each one brings something special to the magazine. The most exciting thing about our contributors is that they are dotted all over the world yet really understand Betty and what she’s about.
What pearls of wisdom would you give to aspiring bloggers and writers?
There are so many talented bloggers and writers out there that I think it’s important to carve your niche and be passionate about what you’re writing about. Also, to find someone who can help you and give you constructive criticism, and encourage you to push forward when you go through hard times.
Where is your favourite place to hang out in London?
East London is where you normally find me or the Betty team. There’s so much to explore and discover and it’s ever-changing too. We featured Broadway Market in the summer issue – getting up early on a Saturday morning and eat our way around is the best way to start the weekend.
Tell us a joke…
How do you approach an angry cheese… Caerphilly