Cancer no obstacle to Chandler writer’s career - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Cancer no obstacle to Chandler writer’s career

November 5th, 2020 SanTan Sun News
Cancer no obstacle to Chandler writer’s career


Anne McAuley Lopez will never forget July 26, 2016.

The Chandler freelance writer had been married only four months when her doctor diagnosed her with Philadelphia Positive Chronic Myeloid Leukemia – an incurable form of cancer.

“I cried in the shower,” McAuley Lopez recalled. “I cried in my husband’s arms.”

“I remember looking at my new husband and saying, ‘Listen, this is not what you signed up for and if there is a chance you don’t want this life with me now, I understand. I can move to Connecticut with my family.’

“Eddie, my husband, looked at me and said, ‘Not a chance. We are in this together. No matter what.’ He has been my rock. He supports me through good and bad and everything in between.”

With that support and her own indominable spirit, McAuley Lopez didn’t cry very long.

“What I have is not curable – I am reminded every night when I take my chemo pill,” she said. “Rather than focusing on the negative and terrible what-ifs, we choose to focus on experiences and enjoying the time we have. I am blessed that my leukemia has been undetectable for two years.”

After the initial shock wore off, McAuley Lopez also went to work on two fronts – managing her disease and managing her career.

“I focused and got to work researching the management of side effects, assembled a team of oncologist, naturopath, and self-care professionals to guide me through whatever was to come,” she said.

With her husband, she added, “We also formed a team with a national leukemia research non-profit and together with friends and family raised $40,000 in four years for cancer research.”

“My family has supported me and understands when I visit them back east – the schedule is subject to change depending on how I feel,” she added. “Fatigue and chemo brain are real but thankfully not nearly as bad as they were upon initial diagnosis.”

Refocusing on her career and business took a bit of time.

“It took the better part of a year for me to start feeling that I had the energy to focus on my business,” she said. “Through it all, I had a few clients and was able to write for them. There were days and weeks that were a struggle but through it all, I was able to keep the business a going concern.”

McAuley Lopez, who moved to Arizona 1997, had found her gig as a writer through an earlier ordeal called the Great Recession.

With a degree in economics from the University of Connecticut, she held a series of analytical jobs when corporate America kicked her out in 2010.

That is when McAuley Lopez realized her lifelong dream of becoming a writer.

“Life has a funny way of bringing us to exactly where we need to be,” she said.

“I’ve always loved writing,” she continued. “If given the choice when I was a student, I would always choose essay over multiple choice. I majored in economics at the University of Connecticut and was recruited to an investment firm in New York City. Over the next 15 or so years I worked in jobs related to numbers and data analysis.

“Then in 2010, the bottom came out of the economy and I was laid off. My friend asked me what I always wanted to do. After thinking about it, I realized I had always wanted to be a writer.”

A quick study, she began aggressively networking, asking businesses about their writing needs. Before long, she picked up her first client from a volunteer blogging position and she was on her way.

She initially began writing professionally for auto shops, plumbers, and accountants under the humorous moniker, Blogging Badass.

Then, partnering with marketing companies, she expanded her areas of expertise to naturopathy, financial planning, estate planning and IT services, serving small to medium size businesses.

Now she is marking the 10th anniversary of McAuley Freelance Writing with the launch of a new division, Agency Content Writer, geared toward over-worked digital marketing and other agencies that need creative, searchable content.

Although she initially focused on writing for social media and blogging, it was through working with SEO specialists and digital marketing agencies and their clients that she developed the idea for Agency Content Writer.

“I believe every business has a story; yours just needs to be told. What you say and how you say it is the difference between landing a deal and losing a customer. I understand the value of customer-focused articles, how search engines review the content and the importance of digital marketing solutions.

“I’ve also become adaptive to writing for different industries because I am focused on being a writer first – then a business owner,” said McAuley Lopez.

She now has built a nationwide clientele, providing content to an array of companies utilizing her expertise in working with teams to meet the customers’ goals.

“I always tell people at speaking engagements to do as I say and not as I did. Stay in corporate America. Build a business. Leave when you can support yourself fully. I was blessed. I had severance pay until I landed my first project.”

When she’s not writing articles or website copy, McAuley enjoys “geeking” out about words, spending time with family and friends and eating take-out from locally-owned restaurants.

“I believe in supporting local, whether marketing, digital solutions or restaurants.”

“I have dreams of rescuing all the dogs, watching sunsets from beachside property and becoming a stand-up comedienne. For now, I spend time with my husband and dog, sip wine and support other local businesses.”

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