WHEN PEOPLE FIND out I'm leaving The Herald-Whig after 16 years, and 24 years in the newspaper and journalism bidness, they ask me what I want to do.
Truth is, I'd love to keep writing. I can do that to an extent on this blog, and being free from the paper will open up a lot of doors and let me expound on a lot of otherwise taboo subjects. Freelancing is always out there, too.
But the real answer to the question is, well, I don't know. Part of me thinks breaking away from any kind of media job is a good thing, but I'm listening to all and every offer and option. I don't want to limit myself. I do want to get out of the comfort zone and test myself.
People ask if I'm going to stay in the store and "chase my passion," and I would, but I would drive poor Sheryl crazy. She's got Second String Music handled. I need to do something else to pay bills and get the most out of myself.
So. What does a burned out newspaper guy do? I have writing and computer skills, experience in TV and radio, blog writing and video editing. I am good with people, try to see things from all angles, think a little bit before jumping off the cliff.
I've been pounding the pavement this week, and I hope something comes up soon. I survived a panic attack at 3 a.m. the other morning, and we are prepared for this to take time.
My first job was at Advance Newspapers in Jenison, Mich., right out of college. I worked there for a year as a sportswriter, and then I was let go because the summer was upon us and they said there was no need for one of the full time guys. A dishonest boss and people who talked behind your back became apparent, and it hurt. That summer was one of the longest of my life, but I learned a lot in the three plus-months between jobs.
Things worked out. They always do.