The 7 Things that Surprised Me Most About Writing for Candor

Ashley Lombardi

1. I can do it anywhere, anytime. 

As I am writing to you now, I am sitting in my bed overlooking my quaint yet up and coming downtown. I have written articles from my bathtub and also on my phone whilst feeding my baby. I have jotted down ideas on strolls, in car rides and wile hooked up to the plasma donation machine. My first thought when I chose to pursue this lifelong dream was W H E N will I find the time? Apparently, if you love what you do, you tend to be able to find the spare minutes in the unlikeliest of places. 

2. I have a lot to say. 

I have always had this wistful daydream of being a writer. I have attempted it at various times throughout my life but have never had the gumption to actually buckle down and do it. When I was offered this opportunity I had no idea what to even talk about. Then as though a levy broke, I had ideas pouring out of me! What’s great is that any idea I have is one that Candor wants to hear! I’ve written about breast pumps, government shutdowns and medical cannabis and it has all been published! Now, the hard part is still putting pen to paper (whoo I’m old!) but I’ll address that further down the list. 

3. …And people want to hear it!

I was so beyond nervous when my first article was due to be published. Knots in my stomach, thinking of judgement and harsh online comment sections where keyboard warriors have been known to attempt to destroy the life blood of many a writer. The morning came and people were RESPONDING! They were SHARING! I was blown away that the masses were devouring what I was saying and enjoying it! I can’t promise that everything I’ve written has been well received by all (I did secretly pen an article discussing medical cannabis during pregnancy, after all) but there has been more support than I ever could have dreamed possible. 

3. There’s a family behind the scenes cheering you on

Starting with our CEO, Domestic Goddess, HBIC, creative genius, Editor – in – Chief Bethany. She is the cheerleader, the mama in your corner you ever believed existed. Have an article idea? She’s there to hype you up. Have a deadline issue because your baby is a tiny teething demon? NO PROBLEM. She is the reason we are all here and she is the reason we all keep going. There is also a whole team of editorial staff hand picked by Bethany, so you know they are the best around. They are more than hands on a keyboard. They are our sisters, our brothers, our teammates, our confidants, our friends.

4. Don’t take things personally. 

There are going to be times that my editor needs to rework something I have written. As writers, our stories are our babies and how dare they change a hair on her perfect head! Whoo, now that I got that out. It’s okay to be disappointed when an article needs to be tweaked but it’s absolutely not a dig at my personal writing style or personality. The Candor staff absolutely doesn’t want to change who I am but, alas, they are a brand and must curate content that meets their expectations!

5. Reach out for help!

Writer’s block is going to happen. We’ve all been there, fingers to keyboard, either with too many ideas or not enough, but no words on the screen nonetheless. I used to sit and stew and ponder and go stark raving mad. This, surprisingly, got me nowhere. It was only when I reached out and said “Hey, I’m struggling. Anyone else?”.  Imagine my surprise when there were others feeling the same thing I was! There’s an entire staff of writers from all walks of life. Different races, religions, socioeconomic statuses, genders and sexualities. If you need an ear from someone, there’s most likely another writer out there going through it and will be more than willing to lend it. 

7. Just be yourself. 

There wasn’t a specific role in the Candor writing team they were trying to fill when I was recruited. They have always and still do put out all calls for writers of all kinds. I didn’t sign on as the stay at home mom, the failed writer, the college dropout. I signed on as Ashley and that’s exactly who they wanted. I find an urge to conform to the mold I’ve made for myself and writing for Candor has allowed me the confidence to be who I am, wholly and completely. 

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