July 28, 2013

Writing as a lifelong passion

Writing is addictive; there is no denying that.

If you’ve ever caught the writing bug, you know what I mean: An idea enters your mind, and you can’t dislodge until you write it down, put into a creative format that satisfies your personal guidelines and attracts the attention of others.

I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was a little kid. I’d read all the time as a youngster, and that habit sparked my own interest in putting words on page and creating my own worlds of adventure where good battled evil in so many ways.

I wrote my first novel while in high school, another shortly after college while working in retail management and several short stories that helped me collect an abundance of rejection slips from magazines and journals along the way.

But life then took over, and I turned my attention to work and family. There seemed no time to enjoy this wonderful pastime I thought would one day carry me to the levels of Ernest Hemingway, John Updike and Raymond Carver as one of America’s great serious authors.

I found solace after leaving the retail industry and starting a career in teaching and a second in journalism. I landed a part-time job with the Press-Republican as a sports reporter in 1988, and I’ve been there ever since, following my dream as a writer, though far removed from the world of publishing giants.

Something happened seven, eight years ago. I can’t put my finger on what exactly, but I started to write creatively again. I began a novel based on a thought I had first considered maybe four decades earlier: What would humankind do if someone came up with the secret to longevity? What if people lived not for decades but for centuries? How could civilization balance a world’s population where people did not grow old and die?

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Mulholland_Jonathan.jpg Running tips to get you in top form

    Different limb lengths, tighter muscles, stiffer joints, prior injuries all play role in determining your running style, Jonathan Mulholland writes.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • clute_cropped.jpg When children are put at risk

    Adults who deal drugs, commit domestic violence and other crimes with kids present are guilty of yet another crime, writes columnist Penny Clute.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Walace_Jolene 7-12_cropped.jpg Let these tips on planting trees take root

    You may think that digging a hole and plopping the tree in will suffice, and it will if you only want the tree to live a short time, columnist Jolene Wallace writes.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • ouellette.jpg Web doctor always gets it right

    I have access to the collected medical knowledge of all recorded history at my fingertips, columnist Steve Ouellette writes.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Airport projects can benefit local economy

    Using a local workforce keeps wages and spending in the community if it can be done in a cost-effective manner, according to columnist Colin Read.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gast_Richard.jpg Producers can recycle tubing

    Project allows maple-syrup makers to conveniently dispose of their used tubing in an environmentally friendly way, according to columnist Richard Gast.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Terry_Mattingly.jpg Easter with doubters and the 'nones'

    Should more pastors ask this blunt question: "Do you really believe Jesus was raised from the dead?" wonders religion columnist Terry Mattingly.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Black_Peter_2014_cropped.jpg Canadiens are Canada's team

    The National Hockey League playoffs are underway, and for Canadiens fans, many of whom likely reside in the Montreal "suburb" of Plattsburgh, it is a time of hope and joy.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • amy_ivy.jpg Is it time to plant? Not yet

    All we can do is wait and see how things get through, columnist Amy Ivy writes.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • little_mug.jpg There's no saw like an old saw Kaye and I laughed ourselves silly the other day as we tried to top each other with our own sayings from childhood, columnist Gordie Little writes.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

Peter Black: Canadian Dispatch

Lois Clermont, Editor

Cornell Cooperative Extension

Richard Gast: Cornell Ag Extension

Bob Grady

Guest Columns

Peter Hagar: Cornell Ag Connection

Health Advice

Ray Johnson: Climate Science
Gordie Little: Small Talk

Terry Mattingly: On Religion

Steve Ouellette: You Had To Ask

Colin Read: Everybody's Business

Pinch of Time