It’s time for round two of Meet the Media Monday! The series features a brief Q&A with leading Charlotte journalists as we get to know the faces behind the stories that matter most in the Queen City. This week, meet Taylor Bowler of Charlotte Magazine.
Taylor is one of Charlotte’s leading food journalists, but her experience spans many beats having written for Best Self, Jezebel and more. Currently, Taylor’s role as Associate Editor of Charlotte Magazine has led her to write about local cuisine and travel features (check out her Puerto Rico trip here). We caught up with Taylor over coffee to discuss the Charlotte food scene, The Real Housewives franchise (Team Bethenny) and everything in between.
What's the craziest story you've ever covered?
TB: “I’ve covered health and fitness, beauty, plastic surgery. Cool Sculpting… a corporate magician...like a motivational speaker but using it as a metaphor for leadership.”
If you could write for any publication what would it be?
TB: “The New Yorker.”
Something people would be surprised to learn about you?
TB: “Cannot cook to save my life even though I cover food (haha). Luckily, my husband is a great cook.”
If you weren’t a journalist what would you be?
TB: “An illustrator or photographer. I went to SCAD as an illustration major and I still do illustrations on the side.”
What attracted you to journalism?
TB: “I love to write (first love) and love to tell people stories. I believe everyone has a story and I’m fascinated by what makes people tick. A majority of people, if you ask the right questions, like to talk about themselves. I also love to read.”
What are the challenges you face being a journalist in 2019?
TB: “Being at a monthly print publication where everything is digital now and keeping up with that. One luxury is we can spend six weeks on a story, but, at the same time, staying current and relevant. Finding that balance is a challenge. And the influencer phenomenon is a new one for me. It’s fascinating how much influence you can have now just through your social media platforms. It’s kind of expected now.”
What’s your favorite social media platform? (both professionally and personally)
TB: “Instagram. I was late to the game and have only been on for a year. I did Facebook and a blog, but Instagram is the source of so much inspiration for stories, pitches...it’s amazing. It’s fun.” Give her a follow @taylormadenarratives.
How long have you lived in Charlotte? What brought you here?
TB: “Six years, and we moved here because of my husband’s job. I was in Atlanta before that. I've moved around a lot, but I grew up mostly in Northern California. For SCAD, I received a brochure in the mail and knew I wanted to see a different part of the country. I went to SCAD sight unseen and loved it.”
What's your favorite activity in Charlotte?
TB: “Things I do with my kids. I do an Annual Day of Yes where the kids get up in the morning and can make any request and I have to say yes. Last year we went to Duck Donuts in our pajamas. Aside from that, my favorite activity is taking my kids around Charlotte for a “mural crawl” to see different artwork in the city.”
What’s one thing you could change about Charlotte?
TB: “I wish public transportation was more accessible to me. The light rail is great though. I love city living and wish I lived on the light rail.
What has surprised you the most about Charlotte?
TB: “How easy it is to make friends. Majority of people here are imports or transplants. And having kids helps with making friends.”
What’s your favorite season in Charlotte and why?
TB: “Fall. I’ve always loved fall. The new school year, anticipation for holidays. A lot to do in and around Charlotte. Fun, seasonal stuff.”
Dream location for a travel piece?
TB: “Capri or anything that pushes me outside my comfort zone.”
TB: “Food & drink is just fun. foodie culture (I have an adventurous palate), self-made people have been interesting, creatives, entrepreneurs, risk-takers and tracing how they got there.”
Favorite restaurant in CLT?
TB: “I love sushi. It’s my favorite thing to eat. I love Sushi Guru, O-ku and Flourshop (try the lamb bolognese). I also love Poppy’s Bagels (She orders an asiago bagel toasted with cream cheese and salmon). I love a good breakfast.
Favorite kid-friendly restaurant?
TB: “JJ Red Hot’s, Hawkers, Cantina 1511.”