Our Mover and Shaker this week is Kathy Buchanan, Features Editor for B Magazine.
The women who appear on this page are selected by consensus of the SheSaid editorial staff and are duly invited to participate. If you wish to nominate an inspiring woman to appear in this ‘moving and shaking hall of fame’, please contact us.
Name Kathy Buchanan
Occupation/Title Features Editor, B Magazine
Company/Organisation B Magazine, Pacific Publications, Sydney
Star sign Capricorn
Describe your career progression and your current professional position.
When I was 23 I began working as the Advertising Assistant on Good Housekeeping magazine in London while simultaneously doing post-graduate media study. But after working on a glossy magazine and seeing what it was really like I realised that I had to be a writer. I had an empty ache in my heart and knew it wouldn’t go away until I made it happen. So when an internal job came up as an Editorial Assistant on an amazing men’s style magazine called Esquire it had to be mine. I snared it and worked incredibly hard doing everything and anything. I’d sort the post, write film reviews, organise parties, liaised with writers and PR’s, input copy and was the celebrity agency contact for the covers. A few months into the job I did my first ever interview with the musician Sting.
I don’t think they’d ever seen anyone work so hard for so little money, so opportunities came my way quickly. I was given several regular celebrity columns, started writing articles and was promoted within the features department. I had my own radio slot on Liberty Radio and did regular radio interviews promoting the magazine. I was working in the heart of London in Soho and constantly surrounded by creative people. At this stage I was also editing the company in-house magazine. After two years at Esquire I was poached to work as a writer and section editor on a women’s magazine called Company (the third top selling women’s magazine in the UK) where I worked for eighteen months. At Company I was sent to Greece and the Northern Territory to cover stories. But after seven years away and five years working for The National Magazine Company (all above magazines were with the same company) I decided to come back to Australia and settle in Sydney for the beautiful beaches and relaxed lifestyle. I then worked as a freelance writer for three months before being offered the Features Editor job on the glossy women’s magazine, B. I’ve been here for over a year and have already been sent on a work trip to London for ten days.
Describe a typical day? I catch the train and usually start work between 9am and 9:30am. Depending on what stage of the issue we are at I attend meetings, work on feature ideas, talk to prospective freelance writers, set up shoots, speak to readers and PR’s, write and edit copy. I often work through lunch. Depending on how busy work is I’ll usually attend a book launch, launch-party or work late a few nights a week. My job is full on and a constant juggling act. If it is quiet I’ll usually finish work at around 6:30pm otherwise I’ll work as late as I have to, to get the job done.
What’s the best part of the job? Meeting a truly amazing array of people every month and working with inspirational colleagues. What’s the worst part of the job? The stress of deadlines and the late nights.