Antonia van der Meer is a magazine editor, book author and media consultant. She spent ten years at Condé Nast as Editor-in-Chief of three of its magazines: Modern Bride, Elegant Bride and Your Prom. She has also previously been an editor at Sesame Street Baby, Brides, and Seventeen. She is the author of 14 non-fiction books published throughout the world. A graduate of Brown University, her work has appeared in most major national women’s magazines including Redbook, Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan and Woman’s Day. She is also a frequent guest blogger on More.com. In her role as a writer and editor, she has appeared frequently on national television, including appearances on Good Morning America, The Today Show, CBS Early Show, The Insider and The Tyra Banks Show. She has often been quoted in USA Today, The New York Times and more.
How did you get into the publishing industry?
As soon as I graduated from college, I took a train to New York and literally walked door to door with my résumé in hand until I got hired by Seventeen magazine.
You have worked at many different types of magazines- why Coastal Living?
For as long as it has been around, I have been an avid reader of this publication. I have a house near the beach and I love the coastal lifestyle, so this is my dream job.
What are your choices for the best beaches in the world?
Pequot Beach in New London, CT, where I grew up; Governor Beach on St. Barts; any beach along the Outer Banks of North Carolina; and Hermosa Beach in L.A. That being said, I've never met a beach I didn't like, and I jump at every opportunity to visit a new one.
What separates Coastal Living from other shelter magazines?
We concentrate 100 percent on the coast. All of our homes, whether in California or Florida or South Africa, represent a love of the beach and being near the water. Some of the most spectacular homes are found on the coast so we have a great variety to choose from. We dedicate ourselves to the coastal lifestyle and seaside communities. We also cover luxury travel. My audience is always on its way to somewhere fabulous (or hoping to be soon!).
Who is your role model?
My mother. She was one of the first women lawyers in the United States (back in the 50s) and she is still filled with excitement and enthusiasm for what she does. Plus she is one of the kindest and most generous people I know.
Hard work never killed anyone. But you also need laughter and good times.
What advice would you provide on becoming a successful Editor-in-Chief?
Remember every day that what you do is fun and a privilege. Don't be afraid to delegate. Rely on your staff for support, guidance, and talent. Good ideas come from everyone.
What books are on your summer reading list?
Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger and Blue Mind by Wallace J. Nichols. But because I can easily tear through a good book in a weekend, I need more suggestions!
Your favorite summer meal is...
Burrata and home-grown heirloom tomatoes with a little olive oil and fresh basil.
What's next for Coastal Living and Antonia van der Meer?
We're very excited about our upcoming September issue because we are publishing a really dynamic list of Beach House Must-haves. In December we are publishing our first-ever Coastal Design Awards, including people, places, and projects of note. And we're continuing to build an incredibly robust Coastal Living boutique on Wayfair.com, where you can shop all the looks from the magazine. Plus we're starting a series of home decorating videos. As for what's next for me personally? Hopefully a beach vacation.