Inspiring Mums: Rosie Nixon
Inspiring Mums: Rosie Nixon
Rosie Nixon is Editor in Chief of HELLO! and recently returned to work after maternity leave. Before HELLO! she held senior roles at glossy women’s magazines including Red, Glamour and Grazia. Rosie's a born and bred Londoner, grew up in north London and now lives south of the river. She's married and has two boys under the age of three.
Aside from her family, in no particular order, she loves reading, writing, the taste of champagne, sunshine, making cakes and collecting things with palm trees on them.
Hi Rosie, you are super busy at the moment so thank you for taking the time to talk to Mumazine. How do you fit it all in?
Well, I’m certainly not going to pretend to be superwoman – as every mother knows, having a career alongside a young family is a big juggle and some weeks it all seems to be working brilliantly, and others you feel worn out and question if you’ve got the balance right. But something drives me to work – I also think it’s important to show my children that Brio train sets don’t buy themselves. I know how lucky I am to have found my work niche though, and to have a boss who understands the responsibility of having a young family.
You are working on your second book now, how do you find the time and peace to write?
I’m not really sure! I sometimes look at The Stylist and wonder how on earth I managed to finish it. But writing is a compulsion for me, it’s something I’ve got to have in my life and, I guess, if you feel that strongly then somehow you find the time. I actually wrote a lot of The Stylist on my iPhone - on the tube on the way to work, in bed, in the back of a taxi; whenever and wherever an idea or a paragraph came to mind, I noted it down, and the words started adding up. I finished The Stylist when on maternity leave for my first child and I really enjoyed having something else to fill my mind other than washing babygros and feeding (much as I loved doing those things too). I almost felt bereft when I finished. That’s probably why I wrote the sequel to The Stylist during my second maternity leave – it’s called The Stylist Takes Manhattan and will be out in June 2017. Much of it was written in a local coffee shop during snatched hours between breast feeds. My husband is a little concerned that I seem to require a baby to write a book!
Is there such a thing as an average day for you? And what does it consist of?
The day will start at 6.30-7am – that’s if I’m lucky and both children have slept through the night. It’s only in the last few weeks that my ten month old has begun sleeping through, so I’m still in a state of shock when I get an uninterrupted nights sleep. I’m lucky that I can generally manage my own time during the week so whilst I am available to the HELLO! team 24/7, I try to carve out quality time with my children too. No day at HELLO! is ever the same – creating a weekly magazine and overseeing our online platforms is a fast-paced lifestyle and I’ll go from discussing the latest Royal news stories with our print and online teams, to securing an exclusive wedding, looking at layouts and flat-planning the latest issue, to attending a glam event, via strategy meetings for the brand and interviewing candidates for new roles. There is no time to get bored! I feel lucky to do something I love so much. I’m very proud and protective about the fact that HELLO! is an upbeat title - we work closely with the stars we feature and we sell with good news. There’s enough for people to worry about in life, HELLO! is about escapism and some ‘me time’ as we take you into the lives of the rich and famous.
When I’m home from work, I try to put my phone away so I’m present for the boys and then I’m back picking up emails when they are asleep. I don’t mind working evenings and weekends if it gives me precious time with my children at the times they need me.
How would you describe your parenting style?
I’m a real softie when it comes to parenting, I’ve never been an advocate of Gina Ford and controlled crying has not been in my game plan. I tried it once and failed miserably. I think they all sleep eventually.
What’s the one thing you wish you’d known before becoming a parent?
Once you accept nothing is going to be perfect, it’s fine. I’m perfectly happy living in a mild state of chaos these days.
What’s been the toughest period/event so far?
When I had two children under the age of two. The long five months when neither slept at night was much harder than I possibly imagined, but here I am, survived to tell the tale. (Just with a lot more concealer around my eyes).
What’s the best thing about being a working mum?
The variety during the week. Much as I adore being with my boys, as any full time mum knows, it is exhausting and can feel monotonous. After a weekend at home I often skip off to work, revelling in the joy of buying a coffee and being able to drink it uninterrupted and not having to carry a travel potty everywhere I go. The mixture of work and family responsibilities suits me very well and I’m sure I’m a better mum – and a more efficient worker – because of this.
You work with celebrities on a daily basis - do you have a celeb mum who you hang out with and perhaps get advice from?
BBC newsreader and journalist Kate Silverton is a great friend of mine and I have so much admiration for her perspective on motherhood. She had her second child before I did, so she paved the way and told me all her tips. She doesn’t ever sugar-coat her experiences either. It’s inspiring when women are honest with each other about the challenges they face; motherhood is one of the most complex roles a woman can have. We’re all in it together.
How do you find time for your relationship?
It’s true that you have to make time – my husband and I regularly try to have ‘date nights’ where the mobiles stay off (except if the babysitter calls!) and we talk about where we’re at, our children, work and future plans. It’s incredible how little time there is during the average week to properly connect, if you don’t schedule it in.
How do you spend that rare time to yourself?
Sleeping! Or treating myself to a massage or pedicure. I do miss lie-ins and reading the papers in bed; I’ve never been good at power napping during the day, so I have gone through the last two years in a constant state of tiredness. I don’t want to tempt fate, but I think I’m finally starting to see the light…
The thing I’m most proud of is…
My two children. And after them, my novel.
Do you still have ambitions you are yet to achieve?
I’d like to do more travelling – South America is a place I’m yet to explore and is high on my list. I can’t wait to have proper adventures with my boys when they’re older. I’d love to take them to some of the places I love – like India, Australia and the west cost of America. I want them to have experiences of different cultures and beautiful scenery – to appreciate that the world is big and varied.
I’d like to be remembered…
With a smile.
Rosie's debut novel The Stylist is out now