It’s been a crazy busy month, though one of the weirdnesses of freelance magazine writing in particular is that you’ll do a pile of work in July, but it doesn’t appear until September or November. Still, by my standards, July was a bear of a month.
This month I celebrated my one-year anniversary of full-time freelancing, and we haven’t been evicted yet! I go into greater detail in “One Year Later” as listed below, but suffice to say it’s been an interesting, rewarding and ultimately positive experience, and I have a lot more to learn.
Also, this month I launched on Medium, which allows me to share essays and get paid by the click. I’m still figuring out exactly how it works, but a lot of good writers seem to be making money there, and what I’ve read so far is good quality. Please feel free to check out my page, and if you are so moved to click and “clap” for my work, it is deeply appreciated.
Here’s what went public this month:
Endgame checkmate (CultureGeek)
Today we celebrate our Independence Day (CultureGeek)
Behind the lens: Work featured in photography exhibit (Donald Media)
9-year-old serves as ‘mayor for the day’ (Belleville News-Democrat)
Highland to upgrade water plant (Highland News-Leader)
I don’t know if it’s art, but I know what I like (Patreon)
Roundtable: Spider-man: Far From Home (CultureGeek)
Highland Street Art Festival goes forward despite city opposition (Highland News-Leader)
Another roar at Pride Rock (CultureGeek)
Highland votes in favor of fewer construction inspections – with a twist (Highland News-Leader)
Cyberattack causes major outages on campus (The Alestle)
The National Aquarium (Patreon)
Here comes the sun: Sgt. Pepper’s is a big hit (The Alestle – my first restaurant review!)
Highland High School graduate gets perfect ACT score (Highland News-Leader)
One year later (Donald Media)
“Alleged victim” (Medium, a rewrite of a previous essay.)
“What do you like to read?” (Medium, see above)
In addition, you may have heard about a recent incident in which a high-ranking political operative admitted impersonating a student journalist in order to get into a conference call with a candidate from the opposing party and lob accusations at her. As president of the St. Louis Society of Professional Journalists, I wrote a statement condemning the action that was endorsed by a majority of the St. Louis SPJ board, and our statement has since been picked up by other news outlets, including the Telegraph and the Intelligencer.
As it discloses, I am personally affiliated with The Alestle at SIUE, having served on its board for years and worked with the students this summer in an editing and advisory capacity; and my SPJ vice president is the Alestle program director. However, I believe this gives our opinions greater weight, not lesser: we know for a fact that this “student journalist” does not exist, and our responsibility to call out unethical behavior per the SPJ Code of Ethics is not lessened by our connections to the student newspaper.
Finally… I didn’t write this one. But the local newsmagazine, Edge of the Weekend, featured my family in an in-depth profile for their back-to-school edition. The weirdness of three family members all going to college together finally made print. The photos used are mine, because my menfolk are my favorite photographic subject. Many thanks to Jill Moon, magazine editor for Hearst Illinois, for thinking of us.
We’ve gotten a lot of attention on this story, and it’s been really sweet to see how many people are cheering us on and supporting us as we enter our second year of family-wide higher education and abject poverty. Six jobs, three tuition bills, two impending graduations and one car. It’s been… interesting.
And in three weeks…. here comes the fall semester!