The [wo]man, the myth, the legend
In high school I became editor of my school newspaper and president of the state scholastic press association. I remember meeting with the editor of the esteemed Times-Picayune out of New Orleans at some point and asking him, a portly Southern man with a heavy Southern accent and the embodiment of “old boys club,” where he thought I should go to college after I graduated. (I was considering Ole’ Miss, with visions of Faulkner dancing in my head.) He said quite simply “Don’t.” Of course, I was taken aback, but he went on to explain that all of the best writers and reporters he had met and hired throughout his considerable career had skipped the J-School degree and hit the trenches, building portfolios and just…DOING it.
Less than six months later I took his advice a step further and dropped out of high school. I started a music blog back when that was the thing to do, and began freelancing for anyone who would pay me…which happened to mostly be Southern home and garden and interior design type rags. Eventually, I became an editorial assistant at a short-lived national startup magazine, then almost launched my own regional entertainment magazine, and then said to hell with it and took a newspaper internship on the island of Molokai in Hawaii. It was unpaid but included lodging and food and a burly little Honda Mule moped which allowed me to explore one end of that odd place to the other. A year or two later I wound up in Alaska waiting tables, which offered considerably better financial returns but was less stimulating and satisfying. When the season was up I moved to a little ski town south of Anchorage and worked for a community newspaper, then started my own community newspaper (short-lived, my attention span was lacking at the time,) then moved around a bit until I landed at the alt-weekly Anchorage Press as the entertainment editor for a few years before being overworked and underpaid finally got the better of me. Again.
In between, I’ve been a vet tech, housekeeper, barista, shopkeeper, tour guide, office manager, sales rep, promo talent, and farmer. Most recently I spent about five years bartending at a little blue-collar dive bar on the East side of Anchorage. It’s the kind of place you know who’s arrived based on the sound their truck makes pulling into the lot, and you have their drink sitting at their favorite spot before they walk in the door. It got a little…routine, after a while.
Anyway, all that is to say I’ve moved to the beach in Mexico and I’m back in the game and returning to my roots in writing. Have a great gig in mind? Hook me up. I’m addicted to research and can write about pretty much anything. I accept all kinds of jobs of any size and would be tickled pink to discuss whatever project you’re working on, so drop me an e-mail and let’s chat or, if you’re so inclined, check me out on LinkedIn.
In the meanwhile, if you’ve read something on this site you find useful, consider sending me a few bucks in appreciation. We live in a world where content is cheap and the information is taken for granted, but think about what would happen if nobody thought it worthwhile to create any more.
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