Monday, September 28, 2009

Newsroom addiction and Suite 101

It has been more than a decade since I wrote to deadline in a newspaper room. I have missed it. The controlled chaos is addictive. And knowing before the whole community what's going on -- well, I loved that, too. And working in a newsroom is such great training for working as the parent of young children. With everyone working elbow to elbow in an open workspace, phones ringing, conversations carried out in the aisle behind you, editors yelling, emergency radios blaring. And the scent of coffee and newsprint -- its my kind of garden oasis. Yet, I didn't think I missed it at all.

I've been freelancing forever. Since 1981 when I wrote and sold my first story to Bluegrass Unlimited and love the freedom. And I get lost in the words when writing personal essays and fiction.

But recently I decided to join Suite 101 and see if I could make a little more money online with a market I could perhaps control a bit better than submitting to magazines and newspapers and then waiting, waiting, waiting, for a response.

This past weekend I finally sat down and wrote my first article: American Trash. It took me awhile to settle on the topic and then narrow the subject, then I found a primary source of great information and went to work. It was such fun! And I've decided that it is the first in a series of articles about waste management, environmental impacts, etc.

Whether Suite 101 comes through and actually proves to be added income for me, I have already received a bonus I never expected. As I worked and crafted those 500 words of verified information and facts, I felt a new energy. Who knew I missed delivering 'news' to the populus so much? I didn't. And I didn't realize how much I missed that newsroom. For a few moments there I could smell the coffee and newsprint and hear the voices swirling around me.

I just visited Suite 101 and saw my article posted under their 'Recently Recommended' heading. It's almost as exciting as getting my story on the front page above the fold! I appreciate any and all feedback on my first article.

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