Christine Hernandez — the force behind the new Sayville Area Moms community news website — said her first writing gig three years ago was “a farce.”
The Bohemia mom explained that she was looking for work-from-home income options after she had her son Griffin, and for the heck of it responded to a parenting website’s call for writers.
“My writing career actually started as a farce,” she said humbly, over coffee last week at Starbucks in Sayville. “I thought, I’m not a writer, but I can tell a story. So I just responded.
“And I wrote something for (the editor), and she loved it. So she started publishing my stories, and I started writing regularly for the website,” added Hernandez, who is expecting a second child with her husband Alex in January.
To be a writer, Hernandez, who studied education at the College of St. Rose in Albany, said she had assumed she needed training.
“I didn’t have a degree in English or any sort of writing background,” she said. “I called myself a writer, but I had never actually written anything.”
But soon enough, Hernandez was successfully pitching stories to other websites and her freelance writing became part of a multi-source income stream that included work as a doula and steady per diem jobs for the City of New York.
“I found Sayville Area Moms to form a sense of community, and create something that local families can depend on,” said Hernandez, who lived with her family in Lefferts Gardens, Brooklyn, for three years, before they ventured to the suburbs in 2018.
“The purpose of the site is to give moms — and dads too — the gift of time by saving them from having to go to so many different places to find information they’re looking for.”
Hence, at sayvilleareamoms.com, you find information about local doctor offices, where to have your kid’s birthday party, where to go pumpkin picking and where “you can find apple sauce at 7 p.m. on a Tuesday.,” Hernandez said.
The site features plenty of “Top 5” things and places stories, such as the “Top 5 Places to Play on a Cold/Rainy Day.” There’s an events calendar, and tabs for community resources and deals and coupons.
With her background in education and her experience as a preschool teacher before becoming a mom, Hernandez said she writes from the unique perspective of somebody who combines a wealth of knowledge about child development with her own ongoing experiences in raising a child.
Hernandez’ site is supported by The Local Moms Network, which was launched by some moms in Greenwich, Connecticut, a little over two years ago. The network expanded quickly, and by the end of this year expects to be in over 100 suburbs in 22 states.
“The moms who created wanted it to be a hyper-local site for families to find everything that they needed,” Hernandez said. “I’ve always wanted to start a local blog, and I really love local business and community … My hope is that this can be a valuable community resource.”