Monday, April 5, 2010


I was asked in I think November to write a column for In another life, I was a journalist. I have a AA in journalism, and I was really into it for a long time. The reasons I am not a journalist anymore are best saved for another post, but suffice to say, fiction writing was calling me much louder than journalism. And then playwriting called me much louder than fiction.

But this is not about that, this is about a column I am working on.

I don't know what it's going to be called. This has been bothering me. I am one of those writers who have a hard time moving forward without a character with the correct name or a play with the right name. These things might change, but I've had characters who would literally not say or do anything until I called them by their correct name.

I was thinking 'Drunk on Writing' from a Ray Bradbury quote. It just didn't sit perfectly, so I just left it that until today. Yesterday, at work, I had my notebook for the site on the desk at work, and my co-supervisor, Dennis, asked me what that was about. And I told him I was going to do a column about writing. He said, 'you're writing about writing?'. And then it hit me, 'meta-writing'! LOVE IT.

I realized that 'meta' is from Greek, so I looked up what 'writing' is in Greek: Grafi. Meta-Grafi.

I realize it might not be the title, but I like the idea that I am writing about writing and exposing the underpinnings. Or under-pennings. That might work too. We will see. In the end, it will probably be up to my editor.

Speaking of whom, when I was still a journalist, he was my editor. Sean Leary was the entertainment editor of The Rock Island Argus/Daily Dispatch, and I wrote for him for years. I started in high school writing album reviews and when Sean came on board, I started writing full length stories about music and such. Eventually I wrote a column about local music called 'Q.C. Underground' and then I was an intern for the summer before my last year at Black Hawk College in 1999. Sean and I always had a really good working relationship, and after he left The Argus, he started and he asked me to write a column. So here I am.

I finished my first draft this morning and I am going to edit it down about 400 words (I always wrote VERY long) and send it off to Sean. I have about 25 ideas written down in a list in my notebook. I am very excited about this new venture. It will be good to get back to writing regularly with a deadline (even though I blew the first one by MONTHS--sorry about that if you're reading this, Sean!), which is what I miss the most about journalism. Deadlines usually keep me on track really well, so that will be good.

And writing about writing more than just on here will be great. I will post my columns as they go up on the site.

For now, if you would, visit and give Sean some love. My stuff will be up there very soon.

No comments: