I chat with Greg Dybec (@gregdybec), the Managing Editor of Elite Daily and the author of the forthcoming essay collection, The Art of Living Other People's Lives, which will be published by Running Press on January 3, 2017. Listen in as Greg shares how he got his job working “for the Internet,” his tips for how to get a book deal while working full-time, and much more.

United States


00:00:02welcome to Forbes podcast
00:00:13hi friends I'm Ali Ford back and this is to inboxes a show where we talked to members of the side hustle generation each show I interview an interesting person who was climbing the ladder of corporate success and managing an entrepreneurial venture on top of their day job to inboxes is a Forbes podcast produced by fractal recording and we have new episodes every other Tuesday and Today Show were talking to Greg dye back by day Greg is the managing editor of elite daily reading Millennial size generating / 32 million unique and the us alone outside of this full-time role Greg is also the author of The forthcoming essay collection The Art of Living other people's lives which will be published by running press in January 2017 hi Craig welcome to the show
00:01:13Sarah today so it started the top how many boxes do you have and what are they
00:01:21so believe it or not I only have two boxes I recently went through an email cleanse so I have one for work which is a weekday and one personal emails go to my person Priscilla is there an inbox that you check more often than the others because that's pretty much a constant stream through gas if you're getting over 32 million visitors to your site
00:01:56what's the average 20 minutes running back and forth between my laptop checking my phone I think there's something there some of those emails that you strategically wait to respond a little later and if you want someone to think you're a little busier than you are sort of dried opening them should be the same for both of those it's any subject line that has to do with the book portion so now it's really Felicity promoting it so any subject line that comes in that information or an outfit is really exciting at the same time I think I was just because of bad news but that's just a side but I think it's a lot like she has a kid and I got a call from the school it's like did
00:02:56principal's office right now
00:03:02that's a good question I was on vacation this summer I didn't check my phone for like 5 or 6 hours and I remember Counting about 75 minutes. The more about your Serta full-time role at Elite Daily you are the managing editor there what does a managing editor do I oversee the editorial staff at Elite Daily so so there about the same time slot of operational day today process see so just fine for the site to always run a little more efficiently and make a bigger impact with the readers that make sense pretty competitive how did you get involved with the company it's it's very competitive now I was very fortunate to be one of the earlier employees
00:04:03but I was at 20th and Floyd at the time I saw the site on Facebook more and more and I decided to reach out to the founders who have become not really great friends and I just love their Vision the risk involved too it was really building platform from the ground up a chance to work with people my own age that building apart from the ground up is that you get to help shape the editorial Vision a little bit how many plates are there now like 5 fault since you started we have a small office and also wow that's awesome I buy Coastal she watches
00:04:57do you have any advice for someone that's looking to break into digital journalism or digital media or or similar
00:05:06SSundee to really say yes to every opportunity opportunities definitely would have been prepared for my position now which lets me help run a site that I guess at this point there's a month if I take those internships if I didn't write about weird things for websites that nobody read websites that aren't any more of those experiences I think just really helped shape me into someone that is ready for whatever the industry throws at me hopefully I feel confident the answer is yes and I feel like I knew a lot of those sort of weird stories are weird places you wrote for cuz they're mentioned in your post that's terrible you have a brand new essay collection your first book again that's called The Art of Living other people's
00:06:06so I read the book so I was a little bit about what the book is about people's lives is a humorous essay collection wholesale humorous if it's not really a lot of stories from my life focus on just being an aspiring writer in New York City and what my job now just how strange it for the internet and it's also I think I'm normally very composed person and realize it was really a chance for me to talk about a lot of my insecurities anxieties that had the fact that I over-analyze everything so it's just a lot of lessons learned from mistakes in your book that I was
00:07:06are you getting a glimpse into you as a person cuz you're right it is you're sort of laying out there some of the things that you are maybe not I don't know but it's also like so relatable and there was so many parts are I was like oh that's totally me that is like my life or just like laughing and sort of I don't know feeling like I'm friends with you I mean in front of you in real life but also friends way that you write the bus was a story about The Uber drivers and how you start around the quest to keep know that giving too much away the quest to keep a perfect and I was a laughing out loud and every time I do have an Uber Rider rating as a customer probably might not want to ask what it is
00:08:06distinction of having a perfect score in the Uber so just FYI I was talking about your mom and you teaching your mom how to use the internet and use social media Outlets my sister being like Oh my gosh we have to get Mom an Instagram hashtag discussion with cracked too much and we're doing but yeah it was sort of I also like how you talk about your brother Cole I think is his name cole was like in character a very nice glimpse into your life and growing up and
00:09:06what is part of the family they would be really fun to read if you didn't live in New York City cuz it's a really nice story about what it means to obtain York state is very aspirational for lots of people and sort of the challenges and also sort of the successes of that happening I think a lot of people have that when I come to New York Yesenia Servin by yet so one thing that really impressed me when we were chatting about the book is that you are really passionate about sharing advice for other first-time authors especially because I think that you're probably on the younger side to have an essay collection which is one of the toughest types of books to a right and then b-cell come out so I'm really hoping that we can talk more about two are the different processes of writing a book for the different steps baby Charlotte about your experience and I really do your advice you have for someone else that would love to follow in your footsteps
00:10:06I think one thing I realized after the writing process of the book was complete it was that there's resources out there there is no documents websites that tell you how to put a proposal together and get an agent but there weren't many testimonials from people my age at least just people's true authentic experience I think the biggest thing there's three sorry the first one is maybe getting an agent and then sort of starting that process of writing the proposal it was sort of preparation method opportunity
00:11:06the years I've always had essays that I've always worked on tweet some way shape or form I wanted to get out into the world so I was just constantly getting stories as near perfect in my mind and luckily an opportunity arose I was able to get in touch with WWE agency there is a chance for me to just really really bother someone until they gave you an email I saw a small crack in it when I finally did get that email the great thing well said I did have work that I was confident enough to send over and then and now I hear into him up this where you an English major in college or a journalism major assuming it was writing related English
00:12:06do you think that writing for the web before you reach out for the agent helped to sort of validate to her in any way that you were a new how to write if you could have an audience great thing about being able to just write on the items that you build a portfolio you could track the views the followers and you can kind of prove to someone starting conversations are people are talking about my work there's no hiding behind anything you can't really talk your way into a book it's writing that's on her page so it always helps have a portfolio whether it's just writing you do on your own time trying to get things published now across the web I always when people talk about getting a book I always recommend that their first episode that either start writing on a personal blog or start writing for other sites just so that you can show people those things that you know how to write even if you don't have a writing background and that people are interested in it
00:13:06thought about that you're completely right did writing for the web sort of shape that sort of stories you put in your book could you know what people would respond to for the way I've been working for an internet company is just so intertwined with my life that I wanted that to be a subject of the book it's almost like technology on the Internet is another character that is kind of old and her out the stories just because it's so me for a lot of people it's procrastination and how they get their news but for me it's my job for sex in the city like V character was New York City like for you you're one of your characters is like the internet and the other one is sort of like New York City to like those are sort of reoccuring you already have some writing samples done that you can show her that you've been working on so then it sort of comes to answer the phone or the hard part writing the book
00:14:06so you have a great piece on Elite Daily which I will link to an art show notes about how to write a book when you have a full-time job but in that piece you should have have three key pieces of advice saying now learning to function as your worst self and then keeping your eyes open tell us what you mean by this is pretty much so sorry friends to make every happy hour after work doesn't always have to be an aggressive I mean we've never really say no to plans we say
00:14:52a lot of people who have aspirations to write a book I think they keep those hidden and what I would say is make that known there's no reason to hide the fact that you're working. You're just working on this craft or writing and the more comfortable you get with getting that out there then people will support that and respect it when you can make every single function and her two people socially all the time so I have to be mean about it but a lot of time to it I have a book coming out next year and I had it short deadline to write the book and I feel like I was saying no every single time someone asked me but if you have an excuse or reason I think people actually respect that like his dad can come out I'm trying to get the shop you're done and I'll always be another happy hour and you might not have another chance to write a book that's why I was always thinking about it
00:15:52so tell us more about what you mean by learning to function as your worst self Nelson Mandela and write your book from my prison cell what I learn to find Comfort I thinking otherwise uncomfortable situations when it comes to writing as a first-time author you're not going to get that ideal Log Cabin in the Woods snow and bothering you experience sitting for me a lot of brainstorming or revisions were done just on a subway on my way to work I wrote an entire essay on a park bench in Berlin Conference and I just making sure that you're always at least brainstorm take notes get some words down completely agree with that and just finding that tiny pocket of time over and over again
00:16:52so what do you mean by keep your eyes open I think what I learned just because this writing process was so long I hit a lot of bumps along the way a lot of instances of writer's block which is perfectly normal stories unfolding New York City there's a lot of character and I just realize that some of the most productive writing happens when you're not actually physically writing it snows mental notes that you're taking the observations that may come back weeks later and make it into your story or inspire you in some way so
00:17:41I guess not getting discouraged if you have writer's block but just taking in the world around you and you never know how that's going to inspire you along the way and I was thinking about if I was running into writer's block in the really any sort of problem to think about it right before you go to bed to write down some notes for me to go to sleep and then I feel like when you wake up in the morning you usually have some sort of solution exactly it gets more flush I didn't get in the shower thinking happened my girlfriend always asks why I take such long showers and it's like
00:18:24how did you feel when you finish and you had a completed manuscript it's it's amazing just because it seems like such a daunting task when you start when you open up that word doc and there's not many words on the page but again it's just chipping away each day one word at a time on sentence at a time and before you know it adds up and it's like wow actually enough words to fill a book The Art of Living other people's lives is your beautiful cover I think your covers really unique and I would love if you would tell us a little bit about how the cover came to be an artist in Philadelphia named Mario Zucca so I haven't met him yet but respect for artists like in the book and it was his idea to make each
00:19:24character that appears on the cover actually tie into one of the stories so I can take I take no credit for head idea whatsoever but yes it's really cool so after you finish the book you can sort of look back at the cover I did not even realize that everybody on the cover is involved in the book she doesn't in real life though man that is so cool
00:20:01that's a good question there's an underwear story there is a guy running in underwear I think a couple of these characters baby me so everyone you have to go to Amazon and not only by the book but also look at the cover it's really really unique another tons of people on the cover and you just said everyone on the cover like sort of a hand-drawn sketch it actually appears in the stories so it sort of like a little mini like a where's Waldo kind of matching up to Larry that is so cool to something else that I think is really unique about this book is the way that you're approaching promotion and marketing for a could you tell us more about how you're thinking about getting people to know about this book that's exactly where I'm at now that's the fun part so I think for me it's really a matter of song events and a lot of other people
00:21:01that's where networking kind of comes in looking back at the circle of really interesting people I've met along the way up to this point and just expand this little people don't need to feel like they have to be added readers to enjoy this book so are you two personalities musician it's just different cover different aspects of media and multimedia so just want to make it accessible fun casual awesome that you're not just talking to like the New York literary crowd maybe someone that hasn't read a book in 6 months or doesn't think of themselves as a reader they can still be introduced to your book and probably get a lot of joy out of reading it last made stuff that's awesome thank you for those for those tips for our listeners so Greg do you know what time it is
00:22:01so here I sit in boxes for a new listeners we play two truths and I was thinking about renaming it which I just heard on but see that's what's the number they called two truths analyze to fax and a false is there today I'm going to stick with that status about book publishing so I have 3 stats I'm going to read them to you to tell me which ones are true and which ones are false fax number one
00:22:42translate Factoria why according to a survey conducted by the New York Times 81% of Americans feel that they have a book in them quote on quote is that true or false
00:22:56what percent is a lot by the way 4 out of 5 say that that's true I'm sure it's a much lower percentage of people that follow through on it but you're totally right I thought that that was incredibly high for at a five people want to write a book but they haven't which is so interesting to me okay second Factor false Judy Blume my favorite author who has sold over 80 million bucks. Nothing but rejection for two straight years that's a long time and a great writer so okay that you're right that is that is to inspire
00:23:56extra mic with only one publisher said yes so Mercury although we did just have to truth so we're going to JK Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter book in 3 months
00:24:17I didn't notice one was false I probably say it was true but I guess it's fine I know I can't do anything but she act like a child and the kid was her play at her feet in the coffee shop and she would write and right cuz she can afford childcare I know today as we could take aways here is that most people want to write a book but to do that you have to write I'm hopefully following Greg suggestions you got to put push past rejection you know it a lot and sometimes it just takes that one saying yes and hopefully it is the right one saying yes and then you have a wonderful publisher in the grade book some time to get the book right going back to Greg's earlier point
00:25:17reach out to agents you need to have some proof of writing that you've stories ready to go so taking some time to write as a testing ground and then actually getting the Epic right is a nice place to start if you're interested in writing
00:25:34so to wrap up Greg thank you for your advice today is there any projects that you were working on or anything that our listeners could do to help support you look so I'd say you're about to go through this to pre-orders mean a lot for first-time authors so what are the book and then read it and let me know what you think when you finally get it it's hilarious it's inspiring and where can someone find you on social media and more important than they find your mom if it's simple it's just at Greg diabetic across all the platforms my mom I would suggest following her Instagram because then you'll see plenty of embarrassing pictures of me
00:26:34Randall is skin 18 have to read the book cuz that's really funny look great thank you so much for being on today I really appreciate your time so as always our show notes will be on forbes.com to in boxes and if you enjoyed listening to this episode please rate and review and by Greg's book and I will see you here next time thank you
00:27:17just enjoy the Forbes podcast podcast

Transcribed by algorithms. Report Errata
Disclaimer: The podcast and artwork embedded on this page are from A Forbes Podcast by Molly Ford Beck, which is the property of its owner and not affiliated with or endorsed by Listen Notes, Inc.


Thank you for helping to keep the podcast database up to date.