This portion of the paper is one of the hardest parts of my job. I’ve been here for almost a year and sometimes wait until Tuesday morning (when we are putting the pages together) to come up with something for this space.
The difficulty comes in the content itself. How do I talk about myself without sounding too narcissistic? Is there a way to write about my thoughts and feelings while remaining professional?
What is a good way to turn rage into a quality 450-word column? Why is it difficult to write my opinions without sounding preachy? What do I do with the “you write too relaxed” comment?
When I graduated with a degree in journalism and media studies there was no class about columns or editorials. Op-ed page 101 was not a course offered at UW-Green Bay or UW-Milwaukee. The curriculum was based on topics like maintaining sources for optimum reporting, media law about libel and defamatory statements, and how to make your social media feeds part of the job.
I was certainly not writing my opinion as a freelance reporter, I was far too worried work would dry up. It’s why I toned down my personal opinions on Twitter and Facebook because professors said my “brand” had to be objective and couldn’t show personal preference.
(My brand? Are you referring to fat and funny? I’m afraid I cannot lose two qualities.)
I’d really like to use this space to talk about issues on a macro-level, but Americans for some reason are more focused on debating their concerns on a micro-level. How does this single issue affect me right now? Is it really a dangerous time for young men in this country? Instead of focusing all our attention on one accuser and one victim – what if we discussed these issues as a society overall.
Like why do young people drink so much in high school and when they go off to college? Why is it that only two percent of rape victims report it? At what point does the national media take a step back and discontinue their outrage over here and outrage over there?
Also, I don’t think yelling like a maniac at a job interview is ever a good idea, especially if it is in front of a Senate Judiciary Committee.
But this space is specifically meant for my opinions. So a few of those opinions are: Music and indoor plumbing are the greatest inventions to mankind. Diversity is good, for example - white men controlling everything is not good, again think marco-level. Corporations are not people. Americans should not be held hostage by two major political parties, then ostracized for not wanting to participate in a system that is happy when people don’t want to be involved in electing leaders.
(Steps off high horse upon a soap box and brushes self off.)
Gotta question? Gotta tip? It’s easy to contact me, give me a call at 715-463-2341 or shoot me an email - firstname.lastname@example.org.
See ya next week.