could say I was born with printer’s ink in my veins,
courtesy of my maternal grandfather who founded a chain
of weekly newspapers in Michigan during the early 1930s.
Many years later, when I was 13, I began working at those
newspapers during my summer vacations, first as a proofreader,
later as a news reporter and feature writer.
then, I have never strayed far from my original love:
working with words. (I did stray for a time, however,
from my original name: Jan Collins. After my first marriage,
and from 1967 until 1978, I wrote under the name Jan
Stucker. For the next 20 years, my byline was Jan Collins
Stucker. In 1998, I reverted to my maiden name, Jan Collins,
and feel as though I am myself again.)
have worked as a journalist at five newspapers in three
states; as a managing editor and executive editor for
two university magazines; as a syndicated columnist (NextSteps™ and Flying
as a freelance writer for numerous national and international
magazines and newspapers, public relations/advertising
firms, corporations, and government agencies; and as
a freelance editor.
As a freelance editor,
my skills have helped hone Web content,
op-ed pieces, government reports and state
agency studies, corporate newsletters and
brochures, ad agency copy, speeches, and
love the craft of writing and editing, and I guess it
shows: I have received numerous awards over the years
from professional colleagues for my work. In addition,
I was awarded a coveted Nieman Fellowship at Harvard
University and a Congressional Fellowship on Capitol
Hill in Washington, D.C. The nation’s capital is
where I attended college, earning a B.S. degree at Georgetown
University’s School of Foreign Service. Later,
I earned a master’s degree at the University of
Although I have wide-ranging interests as a writer and editor,
my specialties include aging, divorce, business, politics, social
issues, education, and personality profiles.
a member of the American
Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA) and the Committee
of Concerned Journalists.