In the fall and spring I teach a handful of journalism courses at Rowan University, including an intro to magazine writing. At the end of each semester I spend a day dedicated to the ins and outs of freelance writing (lord knows I could probably dedicate an entire course to the subject). One of my first pieces of advice is that every one of my students should set up a blog. Not only does it allow one to write about subjects he isn’t otherwise getting paid to write but enjoys nonetheless (for example, see some of my music reviews here), it’s also an ideal and easy way to curate a portfolio. After all, that’s why I got involved in this blogging business in the first place. And since Twenty Pounds Of Headlines has collected some serious dust over the past few months (oh who am I kidding…past few years) I thought I’d take this opportunity to highlight some recent writing of which I’m particularly proud. So grab yourself a cup’a and let the words wash over you.
Just Add Oars: A New Jersey Monthly profile of Tom Van Duyne, whose family has been building legendary surf boats for the Jersey Shore for more than half a century. This guy’s the real deal.
Living in Storage: An inspiring profile about a woman who spent half a year living inside a storage unit. This one came out of nowhere…in the best way possible.
Escape From Darkness: One New Jersey Marine’s intense struggle with PTSD after coming home from years of war. This piece won second place for profile writing in the 2014 New Jersey Society of Professional Journalists’ Excellence in Journalism contest. And it’s the most moving profile I’ve ever reported on.