DCF: Who Are You?
My name is Emelyn Rude and I am a D.C. native and the editor-in-chief of Eaten, a new magazine dedicated to food history. I’ve spent the past few years working for celebrity chefs and cookbook authors, writing a book on the history of chicken, and backpacking through almost thirty countries. In addition to publishing Eaten, I am also a graduate student at the University of Cambridge in the UK.
DCF: Why do you love what you do? What makes you funemployment?
ER: I am fascinated by food and history and love that I can spend my days reading about both.
DCF: Who was your first mentor and how did you find them?
ER: Right out of college I spent a few years working for various restaurant groups in New York City. One of my first mentors was a floor manager named Therese. She really showed me the ropes of how restaurants work and taught me a lot about being a professional.
DCF: What’s your happy place?
ER:Anything that involves delicious food is fine by me.
DCF: Where do you get your energy?
ER: I wish I had a more profound answer, but I just really like what I do. It’s hard to be upset when you spend your days reading about the rite of Tibetan butter carving and looking at paintings of medieval feasts.
DCF: What does balance mean to you and how do find it?
ER: Balance to me basically means listening to what my body and my mind need in any given moment. I definitely work hard, but I find I am much more effective at what I do when everything is in sync. Sometimes it means I need a nap or a walk around the block or even a twenty four hour internet hiatus. Although life often gets in the way, I try to be as intuitive as possible in all that I do and I think that goes incredibly far in maintaining balance.
DCF: What sacrifices did you have to make to get here?
ER: I don’t really think of it in terms of sacrifices, but rather that I prioritized one path over another. I always chose to do what really interested me in a given moment, which wasn’t always the easiest or most lucrative possible path, but it was the one that felt like the best fit in the moment.
DCF: What struggles have you faced as a women in your industry?
ER: I think I am one of the lucky ones that hasn’t felt that my gender has hampered me in any way.
DCF: What is the early advice you didn’t listen to that you wish you had?
ER: I wish I had been more honest with myself about what I wanted and then had been more confident to ask for it. For months at one of my first jobs I knew that I should be doing much more challenging work than I was (and that I should have been making much more money than I was) but I never brought it up because of some vague fear about being new and somehow rocking the boat too much. Many months later, I finally broached it with my manager and he said he had been thinking the same thing for months as well but just didn’t have the bandwidth to address it. It really showed me that you should always be your own biggest advocate.
DCF: What was your greatest failure and what did you learn from it?
ER: I have failed endlessly. I have been rejected by dozens of jobs and schools and editors and have made attempts at half baked business ideas that never really got off the ground. Failures definitely sting, but I always like to contextualize each rejection with the idea that things will work out as they should. I force myself to understand that it wasn’t anything personal that didn’t get xyz job; for whatever reason, this was just not the right job for me at that moment and another one, with a better fit, will come along at some point soon.
DCF: What was your proudest moment to date?
ER: Writing my first book, ‘Tastes Like Chicken: a History of America’s Favorite Bird,’ was pretty grand, but starting Eaten has come at a close second.
DCF: What are you currently conquering?
ER: I am currently finishing issue number two of Eaten, which will be out in Spring 2018.