GardenWall Publications (named for the Spanish “tapia”- an adobe, patio, or courtyard wall) was founded by Allena Tapia in January of 2006.
- BA English, Michigan State University, 3.8 GPA, Minors in Spanish and K-6 Education
- MA work completed with the Michigan State University department of Professional Writing, Specialization in Literacy & Pedagogy
- Rhetoric Society of America workshop on Latino Rhetoric
- American Writers and Artists International Copywriting course
- Michigan State University Alumni College (grant writing)
GardenWall Publications LLC is a freelance writing, editing and translation company headquartered in Lansing, Michigan. Freelance writer and editor Allena Tapia founded GWP LLC in 2006 to provide high-end copy to websites, businesses, and publications, to edit pre-published material, and to serve as a repository for her own works.
GardenWall Publications began as a freelance writing endeavor after Tapia earned a BA in English from Michigan State University (where she also completed coursework toward an MA in Professional Writing).
She worked for a short time at Michigan State University’s Center for Water Science and Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment, where duties included assisting the scientist/editor of the International Journal of Environmental Health Research and providing English, editorial and proofreading help to visiting research scientists on staff.
She also worked as an editor at Lansing Community College’s Center for Teaching Excellence, focusing on marketing and educational copy, among other responsibilities.
However, her true calling was in developing her own business and roster of clients, and she began full-time freelance writing in 2006 with just one client (editorial management at Adelante Forward magazine, a regional publication dedicated to social justice and diverse/Latino audiences).
Within 6 months, Allena added clients to her roster and clips to her portfolio. Further training and classes allowed her to add translation and editorial offerings to her service offerings.
Her “break” came when she was hired as a Guide for the New York Times’ About.com web network. Her page, About.com Freelance Writing, teaches new writers about the career path. Since founding her site at About.com, Allena has been gratified to hear from writers inspired by her clear instructions.
In 2010, Tapia returned to Michigan State for graduate study within the Writing and Rhetoric department. This allows her to pursue study in interest areas such as linguistics, pedagogy, and rhetoric. She was appointed to teach a course in Writing and Rhetoric to Michigan State University freshmen within the department.
Tapia also teaches seminar classes in blogging, writing for magazines, and small business at Lansing Community College, and a summer program that helps to prepare local high school students for college study.
Outside of work, Allena enjoys traveling to visit family in Mexico, volunteering for the Lansing Regional Sister Cities Commission, Eaton County Meals on Wheels, and ACTION Lansing (immigration reform). She also works for her children’s PTOs and school district, and escapes by running and working out.
Her current menagerie consists of a sweet husband, two children, a cousin/exchange student from Mexico, a 100-year old Victorian home, two dogs, two guinea pigs, and three cats.