Sasha Vasilyuk

Cultural journalist 


Prepared for Royal Wedding announcement?

Posted on November 16, 2010 at 2:34 PM Comments comments (0)

Ah, the world is abuzz about the next Royal Wedding. And while Prince William and Kate Middleton are enjoying their now public engagement, the magazine world is going nuts!


In the fast-paced world of internet news, editors better be prepared to run their stories as soon as major news breaks. But to get the readership, they better have a unique take on the event. For some smart editors that means preparing the story in advance - kind of like in the case of celebrities' obituaries, which are often written years before the person actually dies (see Marilyn Johnson's "The Dead Beat" book).


My favorite was Brides magazine, which was the best prepared with a great feature story with sketches of wedding dresses created by famous designers specifically for Kate to consider.



The other approach to covering a major news event of this caliber is doing a blog post with an unusual (did I say scandalist?) take.


Vanity Fair did a story on historical events briefer than Prince William and Kate's engagement (I have to say although somewhat mean, it's kind of funny)


Marie Claire ran a story asking whether Prince William and fiance Kate Middleton's engagement will last. (This one is just plain mean and largely unnecessary).


I think the Royal Wedding - said to take place in spring or summer 2011 - and all its details from Princess Diana's engagement ring to the wedding dress will give fodder to journalists for months.


I also bet it will have a major impact on wedding fashion.



Media makes more media

Posted on January 8, 2010 at 8:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Note: this post shows off the split personality syndrom of a journalist-turned-publicist


Have you noticed how getting the attention of one media outlet can often spur others to pick up the story?


In a recent flurry of articles about the trend of coworking, I saw how three otherwise reputable sources ran a very similar story within days of each other - Wall Street Journal followed by NPR followed by CNN. And that's not to mention that this story already ran two years ago everywhere from San Francisco Chronicle to New York Times and many places in between.


As a former daily newspaper reporter, I understand how hard it is to come up with original story ideas five days a week. But frankly, when one media outlet rewrites a story from another (and runs it the very next day), I think it's yet another stab at the already lousy state of today's journalism, which is compromising quality in a race for shorter, faster output. As a journalist, I try to avoid repeating what's already been said - especially given articles' propensity to spread virally.


When I put on my publicist hat, however, my moral compass points in a radically different direction where few things are better than "Secure one placement and get one free" :)

Reporting on location

Posted on December 6, 2009 at 10:40 PM Comments comments (1)

This is why I love journalism - I got to report on a story about a local business owner who decided to get a houseboat as his office. Hanging out on the boat for a couple of hours didn't really feel like work :) 


Getting in last

Posted on October 16, 2009 at 9:23 PM Comments comments (0)

When Conde Nast announced last week that they're shutting down Gourmet, Modern Bride and Elegant Bride, I panicked. The announcement said Modern Bride's current issue was the last one. It was October and in Dec/Jan issue my jewelry client, Yael Designs, was supposed to have a ring featured.


I tried contacting the Modern Bride editor - her email returned and her phone line was turned off. So I went on Twitter and saw that someone said they just received the Dec/Jan issue. I couldn't believe it. I ran to the stores only to find the October bride smirking at me from the newsstands.


But after several days of turmoil, the December issue finally (and quite mysteriously) appeared. And my client's ring made it in! Ironically, the last issue still had a 10-month subcription card inside.