A couple of days ago, you might have caught my little post about getting the

That’s a pendant I made with
Jodie McDougall’s murrine on the
cover of February 2017 AJT!

cover story for Artisan Jewelry Times.  I’ve been writing for the magazine for a few years now, and also for its sister magazine Soda Lime Times.  

So, I asked Diane Woodall to write a little story for me on how she originally set out to publish both.  Lucky me!  She agreed!
Publishing Soda
Lime Times
is my dream job! But I didn’t set out to be a magazine
publisher. I studied journalism and business in college and spent 26 years as a
real estate appraiser in Houston, TX.   
I never truly enjoyed what I did, and always
envied other people who loved their work. 

When my sister, Becky Mason,
introduced me to lampworking in 2002 I fell immediately in love, and while I
continued to labor away at my appraisals, I finally had an artistic outlet that
brought me tremendous joy. I’m sure many others feel the same way about melting
glass. It puts you in your happy place!

A couple of years after I started making beads anther
local beadmaker and I

One of the original Soda Lime Times.
Diane shared with me that this was from when it
was still the newsletter from the Houston Hotties. 

started the Houston Hotties, the group that would later
become the Houston Society of Glass Beadmakers. I was elected president and
enjoyed watching the group grow. Within a year or so we decided to start a
chapter newsletter, and Janet Robinson was our first editor. Janet was a
wonderful editor and I awaited it eagerly each and every month. It was Janet
who came up with the name Soda Lime Times.
She was our editor until health issues forced her to turn it over to me – and I
knew NOTHING about writing a newsletter. But I dove in, and in doing so
discovered that I truly loved writing it. I applied myself to the newsletter
with the same passion as I did beadmaking, and soon our members were sharing it
with their friends from all over the world.

Early in 2011 my husband Paul suggested that I could
produce the newsletter as a commercial project, but I

Diane and Paul!

was still working full
time as an appraiser and wasn’t sure if it had the potential to actually make
money. I ran the idea by the members of our local chapter and they almost
unanimously encouraged me to give it a go. Thankfully Paul is a bit of a
computer whiz and was able to handle the IT end of the business while I was
responsible for content and production of the magazine. The partnership was an
immediate success, and the lampwork community was supportive from day one. If I
had known then how little I really knew about publishing a magazine I would
have been terrified to try it, but thankfully ignorance is bliss!

Our philosophy from the beginning was to give our readers
an interesting,

exciting and beautiful magazine at a low price – to constantly
overdeliver. The first six months we were in production I was still working
full time, so it was an exhausting half-year. But the day I did my last
appraisal was one of the happiest days of my life! I could finally concentrate
my efforts solely on Soda Lime Times!
Late in 2014 we made the switch from using Word to Adobe InDesign for our
publishing platform, and the magazine has become more professional and
attractive as the years have passed. Paul and I have learned on-the-job what it
is to be a digital publisher, using all our combined skills and talents to make
SLT a respected magazine.

In January 2015, we launched our second digital magazine,
Artisan Jewelry Times, this time
partnering with Karen Leonardo as editor and Debby Gwaltney as graphic designer.
It has been a pleasure to work with these talented ladies. Paul continues to be
our computer guru, and also oversees customer service and web design. And we
couldn’t publish a single issue without our copy editor, Darryl Jadaa. Artisan Jewelry Times has the potential
to out-perform SLT because of the vast number of jewelry designers out there,
and we are very proud of the quality and beauty of the magazine. Over time we
feel that more and more people will embrace the digital platform as print
magazines struggle to survive in the digital age.

I really do have the best job in the world! Being able to
work on something I love with people I love is the greatest blessing I can ask
for, and I hope there will be many more years of SLT and AJT to come!

Diane Woodall

You can subscribe to Soda Lime Times at https://www.sodalimetimes.com/
Back issues are available at https://www.etsy.com/shop/dianewoodall

Artisan Jewelry Times is available as a subscription at http://artisanjewelrytimes.com/
Back issues are available for this magazine too!  https://www.etsy.com/shop/ArtisanJewelryTimes