Published on January 17th, 2013 | by Taylor Majewski0
Woman of the Week: Edith Zimmerman
In an uncertain global economy in which salaried employment and benefits are hard to come by, millennials have had to get creative with their careers, turning to independent web-based projects and social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr to invent their own jobs. Writer Edith Zimmerman is no exception to that movement.
Along with other young artists like film director and actress Lena Dunham, Zimmerman has used her personal experiences as a twenty-something today to create her own career path; and it worked. Her writing is now a widely respected voice for the millennial generation. With such a recognizable voice that is both clever and truthful, her pieces hardly need a byline, making her a much sought-after writer.
At only 28, Zimmerman has been published in the New York Times Magazine, GQ, This American Life and Elle. However, Zimmerman is perhaps most famous as the founder of the popular general interest blog, The Hairpin, which led to her inclusion in Forbes‘s “30 under 30” list alongside many other cyber entrepreneurs. Sister site to The Awl, The Hairpin offers a refreshing glimpse at pop culture and current issues through the personal experiences of women.
Though sincere and heartbreaking at times, Edith Zimmerman’s articles never fail to solicit a chuckle. She writes as if she’s talking to you personally, like you’re her girlfriend, spot-on with her self-deprecating sarcasm. Her articles are typically brief anecdotes of awkward social encounters and vain experiments that happen to many young women. For example, her article, “My Quiet, Mostly Disgusting Adventures with Natural Deodorant”, is a pseudo-saga of the quest for the perfect deodorant conducted through relentless trial and error. Her tale is the type that would comfort your junior-high self in the war against pubescence.
Zimmerman captured the follies of the dating world in her GQ article about Chris Evans, known for his role as Captain America in 2012’s, The Avengers. The article recounts their informal interview at a bar, written in a style similar to a short post she might write for The Hairpin. She expertly humanizes a movie star (the most otherwordly of beings) by admitting that the interview felt like a “date,” that she was charmed by Evans and that they remained friends after the process.
Even though Edith Zimmerman tends to poke lighthearted fun at herself in her writing, I couldn’t help utter, “she’s so cool,” to myself as I read her articles. While many young women attempt to hide their insecurities, Zimmerman openly admits and publishes hers. An article she wrote for Into The Gloss, a beauty website, is an in-depth retelling of her struggles with eating habits and imperfect skin. The challenge to adapt healthy living habits for a better body image is prevalent among women of all ages, though not many care to talk about their internal struggles. While this article is more on the serious side, Edith mostly writes as if her life could be featured in a sitcom. Her comical how-to in the Huffington Post, “How to Make Your Husband a Nice Dinner”, shrewdly lists the process of preparing a nice meal, accentuating the importance of pre-dinner glasses of wine.
Equipped with a liberal arts degree and a sense of humor, Zimmerman is both a model for young people on how to succeed in the age of the internet and a modern feminist of sorts, inspiring women of all ages with her deeply personal, witty pieces.
Learn more about Edith Zimmerman on her website at www.edithzimmerman.com.