I’ve been a daily news reporter for 21 years. It’s been my privilege to serve my community, reporting the news and diligently looking out for the public interest. I’ve served for years on the national Society of Professional Journalists’ ethics committee and as president of the St. Louis Society of Professional Journalists.
I’m also a fiction author, having published about 10 books and novellas with small- and medium-press publishers in the areas of science fiction, fantasy and horror. I run the Literary Underworld, an author cooperative helping small-press writers get their work out there. I’m a freelance editor and writing coach, a nature and art photographer, and occasionally I sleep.
That’s a lie. I don’t sleep.
But now I am stepping down from daily news, so that I can pursue my masters degree and begin teaching new journalists the things that I have learned. I am beginning a teaching assistantship at a local university in the fall of 2018, and will step into the classroom for the first time since the 1990s as both teacher and student.
This is a big, scary change for me and for my family, which is largely reliant on my salary. My husband is a nontraditional student in his fourth year working on his bachelor’s; my son is a traditional freshman.
We’re all going to college together! It’s like a sitcom, only we provide the laugh track.
I’m going to continue working freelance as a journalist, in part because I can’t bear to give it up entirely, and in part because rent is a necessary thing. I’ll be continuing my “side gigs” of freelance editing and coaching writers; of art and nature photography; and my volunteer work with SPJ, Literary Underworld and local nonprofits. Good thing about that not-sleeping, right?
My goal is to support my family while I re-enter the classroom for the first time since the 1990s. That means that if you subscribe to my Patreon, your dollars per month are going to buy milk and rent, electricity and pens.
Everything you contribute means less energy going into chasing other gigs, and more energy and attention into my teaching and grad school studies – as well as more time to create more fiction, do more photo shoots, and generally chase the work that I love. And in return, you receive exclusive content, essays, short stories, photography, online chats, coaching and critique of your own writing…
I intend to sing for my supper.
THANK YOU to all my wonderful Patrons!
Keith R.A. DeCandido
Patrice Stribling Nelson