By: JOSELYN ELLINGTON
The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASMA), in association with Columbia school of Journalism, honored an IU South Bend writing teacher with The National Magazine Award for work entitled “The Happy Family Playbook.”
Jennifer King Lindley was given the award in early February. Lindley’s award winning magazine piece opens up with the question, “What would bring true happiness to your household?”
Lindley was announced as winner at the Ellie Awards annual dinner, which took place at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City on February 1, 2016.
This marked the Ellie Awards’ 50-year anniversary. According to ASMA’s website, “The Ellies” is given its name in compliments of the award winners receiving an Alexander Calder stable “Elephant.” Lindley took home one of these statues.
Lindley’s “The Happy Family Playbook” gives readers seven ways of bringing true happiness to life. Through her writing, Lindley said that true happiness begins in your own backyard and is engulfed through time spent together with minimal distractions, “In fact, a growing body of research suggests that lasting family happiness isn’t about momentous events or acquiring more things. It’s about learning to savor life’s small pleasures … together,” Lindley wrote.
“I write regularly on psychology topics for a range of national magazines. I’m fascinated with the science behind what makes people tick,” said Lindley. This is how she came up with the idea.
“One of the best ways to get better at writing is to read, read, read—and, as I tell my W131 class—that doesn’t mean just texts and Facebook posts,” Lindley said. “I’ll spend the day writing, then relax by reading a book or a magazine for fun. If you want to get published, be prepared to start with small projects, writing for a local publication for example, then gradually working your way up the food chain to bigger outlets.”
“In my spare time, I like getting away from my computer to get dirty. I’m a member of the Potawatomi Community Garden across from IUSB, where I’m in charge of growing squash. I also own a horse, Duramax, who I ride as often as I can. We are learning dressage—yes, horse ballet,” said Lindley. Several other faculty members also garden at Potawatomi, Lindley mentioned.
Lindley has been teaching at Indiana University for five years, and is a writer and an editor. “I’ve been producing content for national magazines for more than 25 years,” she wrote on her website.
Lindley began publishing in 1986. She graduated from Dartmouth College of New Hampshire that same year, majoring in English Literature. Her first job was a receptionist at New Age Journal magazine, which specializes in “information and inspiration for personal growth, wellness, spirituality, metaphysics and healing,” according to its website.
This was not an easy win for Lindley. According to ASME, there were two hundred eighty-two publications, and a combination of 1,590 digital and print entries in the Ellie Awards this year. Lindley won the award category for “Best Personal Service.” This award honors and recognizes the journalist with the distinction and capability of serving readers needs and aspirations. According to ASME, “295 editors, art directors, photography editors and journalism educators” judged the entrants.