He is the Managing Editor of Nextavenue.org, a site from PBS for people 50+, where is also editor of its Money and Work & Purpose channels and a regular blogger. He is also a freelance book reviewer for People magazine. He is the author of two books: How to Avoid a Midlife Financial Crisis and The Money Book of Personal Finance.
EE: In your publishing roles, did you ever have a mentor? If so, who was it, and what did you learn from him/her?
RE: My mentor was Frank Lalli, the editor of Money magazine when I worked there as an editor.writer. I learned from him to be fearless, to look for ways to do things that had not been done before (that led me to create Money‘s now-franchise Best Places to Live in America story) and to always be fair, even when doing an expose.
EE: Who would you most like to meet and have a conversation with (living or dead)? What would you ask this person?
RE: I’d most like to meet Henry Luce (co-founder of Time) and I’d ask him: What do you think of the state of journalism today?
EE: What is your favorite book and why?
RE: The Phantom Tollbooth for its clever wordplay.
EE: When you write do you listen to music, podcasts, or just the sound of silence? What is your writing process?
RE: When I write, I prefer the room to be quiet. My dog, Joey, often has other ideas, however.
EE: What does working for Next Avenue teach you about dealing with your own kids/family?
RE: Working for Next Avenue teaches me about the importance of setting priorities, offering personal finance advice to my grown sons (whether they take it is a different matter) and making time (nights, weekends, vacations) to enjoy being with my kids and family— or, in the case of my sons who live across the continent, talking with them by phone, text or FaceTime.
EE: What are the Writer’s Guidelines for Next Avenue?
RE: Next Avenue articles are typically 800 to 1,000 words. They are written for men and women in their 50s and 60s and written in a friendly, conversational tone. Many of the articles are service pieces with actionable advice; some are essays or personal pieces.
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