Brittany Adams is making life as a writer look uber cool and ultra appealing. Posted up in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, churning out buzzworthy bylines by the minutes, and sipping Blue Bottle coffee this fashionista is climbing high and fast. With a career that began at Style.com and Glamour she has now taken a seat/throne as the senior editor of branded content at CR Fashion Book. Her freelance pieces have racked her up a lovely resume, appearing in places like ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, Allure, and more. She found some time to hang with us in Bushwick while we talked about her mother’s closet, superpowers, and how to balance life and work. She’s seen here wearing the Pfeiffer in Current + Brindle Tortoise.
R: When it comes to following one’s own creative intuition what do you think is important? What do you listen to?
BA: As a writer, I’m constantly learning and condensing information about a topic, then digesting it through my own lens. I can easily fall into a black hole of research for hours (or days!), but at a certain point I force myself to close my tabs, stop crunching information, and let it rip on the page. The goal is getting lost in the words, and letting them pour out quickly and effortlessly—by following your intuition and not second-guessing yourself. That doesn’t always happen, of course, and the struggle of writer’s block is real! But finding that elusive flow state is what makes it all worth it.
R: What does a typical day look like for you? Is there such a thing?
BA: I recently started a new job at CR Fashion Book that I’m challenged by and learning from immensely. CR is a bible for fashion lovers created by the inimitably chic stylist and French fashion editor, Carine Roitfeld. CR recently joined forces with the mega publisher Hearst, and I was brought on to help relaunch the website and oversee branded content. I’m contributing regular editorial stories daily—tapping into my fashion writer background—but also collaborating with brands on cool sponsored stories everyone can get excited about. It’s interesting to learn more about the sales and marketing side of the industry after doing pure editorial for years, although this is not my first branded content rodeo.
On any given day, I could be meeting with a new designer to view their collection, getting together with a PR friend, pitching branded content ideas, or just putting my head down and writing at my desk. What’s predictably unpredictable about my job is I’m covering a range of topics that include but go beyond fashion. One day last month, for example, I interviewed Lily Aldridge while she prepped for the Met Gala. Before meeting her at the Carlyle Hotel, I had just wrapped a phone interview with an expert on transcendental meditation; and after work, I got drinks with a friend to get the scoop on Frieze Art Fair for a feature I was working on. The mixed bag is what keeps things interesting!
R: If you could evolve your craft instantly, right now, what sort of step forward would you take? What would change?
BA: I kind of alluded to this before, but the ultimate goal would be to write as fast as possible without worrying about anything. Sometimes you just have to send an article and forget it, get it out of your system. I think of it like playing kickball. You’ve just got to boot every ball that comes your way and run with it. Producing content these days isn’t always about quality so much as quantity, so I’d love to be able to put the equivalent of an Ad Blocker on when I click into over-thinking mode, and basically write an immense volume of content at a breakneck speed. This is something I’m always working on improving.
Another superhuman ability I’d like to gain is foreseeing which stories will perform well (traffic and data are king), and how to transform any headline into clickbait. That is the goal of pretty much anyone who works in digital publishing, even though I think it’s a shame all headlines these days sound the same.
R: What single person have you come across in your life, who without them or their influence, things would simply not be as they are?
BA: Classic answer but I owe everything to my mother, who is my #1 cheerleader and inspiration. She helps me through tough times, keeps me laughing, and always puts herself before others (to a fault, perhaps). My mom also has a bold sense of personal style—especially when she lived in NYC during the 80s—and I’ve reaped the benefits of her wardrobe, returning to her closet time and again over the years for vintage treasures. Fashion is going through an 80s moment right now, so her boxy blazers, Norma Kamali dresses, and old Gucci logo bags look more relevant than ever.
R: Inspiration or perspiration?
BA: Lately I’ve become fixated on the idea of “working smart” instead of “working hard.” I’ve always put myself in the latter camp, and can often be found hunched over my computer early mornings, late nights, and over the weekends. As a writer, it can be easy for work to overtake your life because you could essentially always be writing or putting out more. I always thought there was some kind of heroism in working 24/7, but these days I’m more inspired by the people who can prioritize their own wellness while still getting everything done. It’s all about #selfcare, and that involves both inspiration and perspiration.
R: What can you not live without?
BA: I cannot live without hip hop, reading (books and long articles), and hanging out in my backyard in Bushwick.
R: What would you want to be remembered for?
BA: I want to be remembered for being funny and a good person. Fashion writing is just part of the equation, but I’ve also always envisioned myself teaching kids one day. The script is still being written!
R: How do you take your coffee?
BA: Whether I’m drinking an iced red eye or hot Blue Bottle coffee at home using my pour over drip system, I add a tiny splash of whole milk so it’s not quite black. No sugar, please.
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Photos: Joonie Yang