I started writing a newspaper column 9 months ago. I think the above is my personal favorite, although. The most widely read according to online metrics was a piece against marijuana legalization. It still gets angry references months beyond. And that despite a Prosecuting Attorney, a doctor, two Sheriff’s Deputies and our Governor’s office helping me with research.
The newspaper and I have a strange relationship. The publisher once threatened to embargo our use of all AP copy taken from the paper’s pages. The people there really don’t like criticism and a couple of weeks ago I was called a “shock jock” in an editorial. On the other hand I was invited to a meeting and told I could pick the most convenient day of the week for the column. It may be because the average item gets a 30 second look online but my column averages three minutes according to data. Originally I was asked to submit 1200 words and then was told readers prefer 800-900. Since then three of four columns have been over 1,000. Hey, when you spent most of your life writing copy to be read aloud in 30 to 90 seconds why pass on an opportunity for a few more words?