I’m a generalist, which means I have written about everything from shark research in the Chesapeake Bay to traveling in far-flung Caribbean islands, from profiles of watermen, businessmen, and boatbuilders to stories about climate archives in whale ear wax.

For me, writing is a gateway to the rest of the world. I love immersing in a subject or a place and learning about something completely new. I ask a lot of questions. I pay attention to the details. I listen. Whether for a magazine story or a poem, the MO is the same.


Photo by Tamzin B. Smith

My professional journalism career began in daily newspapers, then came my real education during nearly four years with The Associated Press in Northern New England. I took a hard left turn from the intensity of the wire service to become mid-Atlantic bureau chief of Soundings, a monthly newspaper about boating that I’d grown up watching my dad and brothers read cover to cover. This brought me back home to the Chesapeake Bay, where I eventually became executive editor of Chesapeake Bay Magazine.

In 2008, my husband, young son and daughter, and I sold most of what we owned, moved onto our 45-foot sailboat Osprey, and went sailing fulltime throughout the western Caribbean, Central America, the Bahamas, and the Atlantic coast from Florida to the Canadian Maritimes. During this time, I wrote a monthly column for Cruising World magazine about our travels.

Since our return to land in 2012, I’ve been a writer for Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland, where I’m presently director of college communications. While studying for my master’s degree in English there, I began fulfilling a lifelong dream to write and publish poetry. I’ve also resumed freelancing for Smithsonianmag.com, where I write about science and the environment. In late 2018 I began freelance writing for Soundings again, and in August 2019 I became senior editor for Good Old Boat magazine. I still write a column and features for Chesapeake Bay Magazine, where I’m editor-at-large, and I remain a contributing editor at Cruising World.

I’ve attended the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference twice studying fiction, the Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism, and Maine Media Workshops to learn storytelling through videography.

You can probably tell, I’m rarely satisfied enough to sit still—literally or creatively. This probably makes me kind of hard to live with. Oh well.

During my years as a commissioning editor at Smithsonian Magazine, one of the finest writers I recruited for our pages was Wendy Mitman Clarke.  She is a reporting and writing powerhouse.
— Constance Bond, Editor and Writer
Wendy Mitman Clarke has a profound and instinctive sense of story. She finds it amid the clutter of reality and captures it to illuminate life for the rest of us.
— Louise Farmer Smith, author of One Hundred Years of Marriage
Wendy is an excellent writer who can capture the moment in words that really resonate with her audience. She is a true pro and excellent collaborator.
— Mark Pillsbury, Editor, Cruising World Magazine