Every writer has been told at least once to “write what you’re passionate about.” I guess I’ve always been somewhat of an exception to that advice, although not really intentionally.
Another piece of advice along the same lines is to develop a niche, something you know very well and have been able to write about successfully. Back in the day, natural gas development was one of my niches. Not really by choice. The newspaper I worked for at the time had the bureau I worked in right in the middle of intense gas drilling. It made sense to focus much of my efforts on that topic.
I don’t live in the same area and haven’t written about natural gas in many years. Maybe some people Continue reading “Getting to some important stories”
Some days I feel like a dinosaur; we all know how their story ended. Not just due to age, but my chosen profession just keeps getting gloomier as it seems headed toward extinction.
Most people probably know journalism is anything but a high-growth occupation. Declining revenue and what seems like more and more bottom-line-focused hedge fund owners do not paint a rosy picture for those of us in the news media.
Thousands of reporters, photographers, copy editors and other positions have been eliminated over the last decade. News outlets have closed down, leaving what some call a “news desert” in the communities they formerly served and kept informed.
A few bright spots surface here and there, Continue reading “A few kicks left after all”
Truth be told, I never found writing breaking news stories that hard. You’re really just telling what happened where and, if possible, why. It’s an important role for a journalist but it never really lit a fire under me.
Not so with most of the stories I’ve written over the last several years. As a freelancer, I get to pick and choose the stories I write. My clients are not interested in breaking news, although some probably wouldn’t turn it down if I learned of something that merited immediate coverage. They’re more interested in features and details, so I get to dig deeper and find an angle and a story.
My most recent case in point involves Continue reading “I dig digging in to find a story”
Detours. Roadblocks. Hurdles. Challenges. Life.
Whatever term you use, everyone has to deal with things that come up. A lot of times when they do, you have to slog through and continue to move in what you hope is a forward direction. But it can be hard.
I experienced — and am still experiencing — this over the last few months. My brother passed away in another state and I was appointed the personal representative to his estate. It’s one of the most difficult things I’ve had to undertake, Continue reading “Battling back to my passion”
One of the things I’ve always tried to keep in mind as a journalist is the role the profession plays in recording history. That sounds a little high and mighty, doesn’t it? But in a lot of cases, it’s true.
News by definition is something out of the ordinary, the unexpected, the tragic. Yes, it can also mean something interesting without any of the more “hard news” aspects as a story. Feature stories fall into that category. Telling how something happened that may not have affected thousands or millions of people, the planet or any other species we share the earth with can still be important and worth reading.
I recently spent a lot of time looking back at some local history. Where I live on Colorado’s Front Range, Continue reading “History can be a blast”