23 Jun

As a student of words I come across a lot of writers. Some good, some great. Some epic, some just stealing listens and making money off incoherent pedantic writtens. Kathy Iandoli is in the epic range. A published writer and author with 20 years under her belt- I was more than excited to get a few minutes of her time. While she isn’t what some would call a “classically trained writer” (hey, guess what? Neither am I… shhh), She has a style all her own that connects with her readers and transcends genres. Without further ado let’s get into it.

How did you get into writing as a career?

I first started writing back in ‘99 when The Roots first formed their Okayplayer message boards. I had worked on their street team and would hang out on the boards writing what I guess would now be considered think pieces. Some of the boards people were editors at magazines (shout out to Dove) and I pitched some articles. The rest is history.

Tell us about your past? Schooling, etc, anything you’d like to share.

I actually don’t have a degree in writing. I have my undergrad degree from Montclair State University in Marketing and have my Masters in Music Business at NYU, where I’m now In-Residence lecturing for their Village Records course. I always felt like writing came from within, though I did take Continuing Ed courses at NYU in Magazine Writing just so I knew the basics. Everything else came from my passion for both music and writing.

Do you keep a physical copy of all your articles?

My print articles, yes. I keep two copies of each publication. I’m actually in the process of moving them all to a temperature controlled storage space. Twenty years of clips adds up!

Left or right handed?

Ambidextrous, actually, but I write with my right hand. Anything mechanical, I use my left.

Favorite writing gig to date?

Being an author. It’s not necessarily a “gig” per se, but I love it—even when I’m melting down haha.

Dream writing gig?

A piece in the New Yorker would be nice.

How was it working with Prodigy of Mobb Deep?

Working with P was a dream come true. As a hip-hop legend, he had so much insight and so many stories. As a friend and human, he had a heart of gold and a sense of humor second to none. I miss him every day.

Your top 5 hip hop artists?

Lauryn Hill, Prodigy, Andre3000, Jay-Z, and the last spot rotates.

Favorite music genre?

Hip-Hop, Electronic, female singer/songwriters of the ‘70s, British Rock, some Pop.

What are your long term writing goals?

More books. More writing. More teaching about writing.

One tip for all writers?

In this day and age, writers have become “celebrities” in their own right, showing up on TV, hosting parties, having podcasts, etc. My advice to all writers? Ask yourself if you’d still be writing with no cameras present. That’s how you know this is really for you.


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