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The November issue of Zoomer magazine has something for everyone. For the ladies: a story I wrote that examines “10 Ways to Ease Hot Flashes,” from supplements to soy, with the truth on what works – and what doesn’t. And for the men: “Berry Good News for Erectile Dysfunction” shares a bit of promising science about possible links between fruit and, er, function.

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August Update

So far, it’s been a busy summer packed with work… and play. I spent part of July on vacation, including a memorable trip to several regions in France. Vraiment magnifique! Now that I’m back, I have a lively variety of magazine articles on the go, as well as writing projects for corporate clients, so I’m at my desk full days. There may be a heat wave out there, but there’s air-conditioning – not to mention coffee – in here. All is right in the world.

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If you’ve got kids, you’ve got calendars. It’s back-to-school season, and with it comes an array of new extracurricular activities. But how do you know what’s best, and how do you avoid overscheduling your kids? What should you pick? If you ask me, you should pick the September issue of Alive magazine and read my article, “Balancing Kids’ Extracurricular Activities,” for expert advice.

And if you’re finding it hard to read all those notes the school is sending home, don’t miss my story “Now Read This” in the September issue of Zoomer magazine. Learn about some of the cool new options for correcting reading vision. They’re a lot hipper than holding printed material at arm’s length!

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Typically I’m working on magazine stories long before they are published, so I’ve had a while to get excited about the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games, which will be hosted in Toronto starting this week. Months ago I was writing an article for OWL magazine exploring the games, the individual events and even some of the athletes. My feature, “PanAm Games Preview,” appears in OWL’s June issue. (And in case you’re wondering, yes, I have bought my event tickets!)

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Calorie counting is as old as the hills. So why are so many of us having trouble achieving, uh, a flatter terrain? Is tracking calories really the most effective – and only – way to lose weight and stay healthy? Today’s diets are downplaying calories, and there may be good reasons why. Check out my story, “Calorie Wise,” in the summer issue of Glow magazine. Find out what the latest science is saying about how our bodies deal with calories differently, why all calories aren’t created equal, and how you can use this information to get healthy.

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New Praise Posted

I regularly keep my website updated by uploading new article samples, adding to my ever-expanding list of clients, and of course spreading the news through this blog. Last week I received a couple of terrific – and wholly unsolicited – comments about my work, one from a new editor I’ve written for and one from an expert I recently interviewed. You can now view them on this page of testimonials. It’s this kind of feedback that really makes a writer’s day!

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This week I took part in an interesting interview with writer and editor Laurie Mackenzie, who’s researching her Master’s thesis at Carleton University on the topic of service journalism. Not all of the writing I do is service, but a huge chunk of it could be classified this way. These are articles that give solutions to their readers, perhaps inspire them to make changes in their lives or take action in their communities.

  

This conversation prompted me to reflect on service journalism and why I do so much of it. The most obvious answer, for me, is that it helps people. It helps them parent better, fix their health, increase their job satisfaction, safeguard their homes… and, okay, even come up with the perfect solution to that ceiling renovation. (Yes, I’ve written on all these topics!)

  

But knowing you may have helped even just a few people to live a little better is intensely satisfying. Really, it’s no wonder I love my job.

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