Last night, I wrote more than I had in a long time. Last night, I wrote about something that had been bothering me for so long and it was hard. I mean literally the toughest thing I’ve had to come clean about because it was burdening me to the point I couldn’t function. I was finding myself falling back into depressive patterns – staying up all night, not being able to get out of bed, extreme irritability, crying – the works. (Thank God for my husband, who helps me the best he can). Working out and drinking water and yoga weren’t helping. So last night I finally let it all out and today, I feel a bit better but so much lighter.
I constantly think about how to create unity between everyone instead of using the typical tactics that create divides instead. And all I can think about is fall 2015, sitting in a 300+ lecture on how to approach inequality and bias and add more diversity to the conversation.
There is a huge lack of it. Context is the backstory, the information that doesn’t quite make it to the news reels and front pages because it’s already been said. But as journalists, it’s also our responsibility to keep reminding those who are watching what the big deal is.
So here I am. A month and a half in Denver, and so far I’m loving it. It’s about midnight and I can hear a train blaring its horn a mile or so into the city. The Aspen trees in the mountains have shed their brilliant yellow gold leaves. It’s not warm anymore, but it’s not cold yet either. I’ve given up my Missouri license and plates in exchange for Colorado ones. The days I work seem to fly by, and I can actually enjoy my free time, unlike in the school year when I wallowed in deadlines and constant pressure. For once in my life (and possibly graduating has something to do with this), I feel relaxed. I feel bad I haven’t written but when you just want to explore and take everything in instead of staying inside, I feel it’s justifiable. One thing I do do is keep a running list of all my ideas so I can have some inspiration or a starter when it is time to write. It hasn’t failed me yet!
Do you know what ocean acidification is? I didn’t.
Tonight, I attended a lecture by National Geographic environmental writer, Craig Welch. Welch wrote “Sea Change,” a Seattle Times story about ocean acidification that drastically affects marine life and communities from Southeast Asia to the Pacific Northwest. I learned that people react to ocean acidification, which is elevated levels of carbon dioxide in the ocean, more than they do to climate change, which is the same thing but in the atmosphere.
How do you write about poverty?
How do you write about addiction?
It’s not easy.
When I met Latashia, she wasn’t ready to interview. She just came home from Alabama, a place that held not-so-happy memories for her, after visiting a sick grandmother. For the past seven years, Columbia has been her safe haven. Revisiting the physical location of her past shook her present world, and she wasn’t ready to tell her story when I first came to speak to her.
That was fine. I’ll be patient.
A couple of weeks ago I visited New York for the first time with the Mizzou Magazine Club to tour magazine offices, speak with editors and designers (some were Mizzou alumni!), and get a feel for the city. One of the main questions we asked were what they looked for when hiring interns; this is the collective consensus.
Caution: Rant ahead.
After a bout of procrastination, I am attempting to get out of it by writing something I don’t have to write. I don’t know if you realize how refreshing it is to get it all out on paper, er, computer screen (unless you’re a writer and you know what I’m saying).
This semester is probably my hardest one yet. On top of my internship for the town paper, I am an editor for another class. In another class, it is writing intensive. So for nine credits out of the 17 I am enrolled in, I am just writing. Except I’m really not just writing, because that’s the easy part.