About your journalism:
What do you write about?
I’ll write anything you’ll find in a mainstream consumer magazine – reportage, travel, list features, food and drink, humour, business, celebrity interviews, etc. The only thing I don’t write about is gambling – and that’s only because I did it once and checking my maths almost gave me an aneurism.
Where are we likely to see your work?
I’ve written for pretty much every major men’s magazine in Britain over the past decade, many of the tabloids, a few of the broadsheets and an ever-increasing number of corporate clients – I do a lot of copywriting. I’ve also written a couple of books and I edit half a dozen business magazines every year. For the full breakdown, visit: www.simdlt.com
What’s the most memorable work you’ve done?
I really don’t have a particular piece that I’m most proud of. My first cover story for FHM was good for the ego, but what gets me fired-up is when I know I’m on the same wavelength as an editor. I love it when I get sent through stunningly-short commissions; it means I’m doing a good job. The briefest? “Need 2,000 words on future armies. Go!”
What interview or feature would you love the chance to do?
A column would be great.
About you and PRs:
Where do you source ideas for articles?
Forgive me, but I’m not telling! The pitching process is competitive enough as it is. I do receive some great stories through PRs, though – they’re vital to my success..
How can PRs be useful to you?
Pitch me until my ears bleed! I like to think I’ve got a good relationship with PRs – I love it when ‘the system’ works, and I don’t get ‘old school journos’ who treat PR with disdain. I always like to receive pitches, but I feel bad when I don’t have the time to reply with a ‘thanks, but no thanks’…
How and when do you like them to get in touch?
Please check my website www.simdlt.com to see what I write about and contact me via the links. I don’t mind email or phone contact.
Do you find press conferences, trips, parties and other events useful or an interruption?
As a small business owner (and living outside of London), I have to work out if it’s going to be worth my while – I won’t travel for the ‘chance’ of interviewing someone, say. That said, if it all stacks up well, I’m there! I love a good press trip. Perhaps a bit too much, actually.
If you could make one change to the way PRs deal with you, what would it be?
Well, they could always consider me for my copywriting services. I do some great work for some big brands and I’d be delighted to pitch for more PR-generated commissions.
How would you pay the bills if you weren’t a journalist?
I’m not being facetious, but I have no idea. I can’t think of anything I’d rather do than work with words. Um, postman?
If we gave you £1000, how would you spend it?
If the wife’s reading this, it would be a weekend for two at Le Manoir. If she’s not, then it’s definitely a trip to Monaco for the Grand Prix with my brother.
What books are on your bedside table, magazines in your bag, or blogs on your screen?
Depressingly, I typically read whatever books I get sent through the post that week. Magazines-wise, I really rate Vanity Fair. I don’t really read blogs, but I do enjoy thedailybeast.com. And Martin’s Money Saving Tips. Pathetic, isn’t it?