Media Monday: Laura Dannen, Seattle Met Magazine

Rosalind Brazel / December 10, 2012

Each Monday, we’re giving readers a chance to get to know the media a little better.

With a little flair.

Our goal is to give readers some insight into the work and work style of area journalists, and get to know a little bit about the person behind the byline. Start your week off with an online networking opportunity through our Media Monday blog post.

This Week: Laura Dannen, Seattle Met Magazine

laura_dannenJersey Shore native Laura Dannen is an award-winning reporter and editor with an M.S. in journalism from Boston University and a B.A. in politics from Princeton University. She has a decade of newspaper and magazine experience, with bylines appearing in The Boston Globe, The Star-Ledger of Newark (NJ), Time Out New York, and Metro newspapers. Before arriving at Seattle Met magazine, where she’s been the arts editor for three years, Dannen covered all things A&E as deputy editor of Time Out Singapore magazine.

Work highlights include: receiving relationship advice from Philip Seymour Hoffman; covering gay marriage, universal healthcare, and Gov. Mitt Romney as a statehouse reporter in Boston.

Q: What’s your favorite kind of story?

A: In general, I love a story that surprises me, teaches me something new, and makes me laugh. I’ve moved around a lot, so I tend to look for local stories that play into a larger context, national or global. As an arts editor, I love reading about people: scary-talented Seattle artists, musicians, writers, and performers creating in ways we’ve never seen before.

Q: If you could have someone else’s job, what would it be?

A: Tina Fey’s, though I would settle for Liz Lemon’s.

Q: Finish this sentence: “A good PR person is …”

A: …a lot like a good journalist: neurotic about spelling and accuracy, does his/her homework before making first contact, and keeps phone calls to a minimum.

Q: What skills do new journalists need?

A: The usual: curiosity, strong writing and grammar, a willingness to chat with anyone, the ability to explain an event or idea in 50 words or less. Plus a few new tricks: craft a clever tweet, write an SEO-friendly headline, and know what it means to “embed a video.”

Q: What hidden talent or skill do you have that viewers/readers don’t know about?

A: I was the top goal scorer in my intramural soccer league in Singapore. I also have a knack for putting together a decent pub crawl.

The PR Pro Takeaway: This journalist is well-traveled (she lived and worked in Singapore) and eclectic and is likely to recognize a good art story in any well-written pitch. Pay attention to her hint about doing your homework and minimal phone calls. Find Laura on Twitter.