I learned how to type on one of those old-school metal typewriters. Even though it was the early eighties and Cony had rooms with electric typewriters and even those newfangled computers (as we liked to remind our teacher in whining tones at the time), my typing class used knuckle destroying antiques.
Our teacher told us he had a reason — it was purposeful torture. He said that if we were able to learn to type with even basic proficiency on one of those machines, any keyboard we touched from moment forward would seem easy. He was right.
Even with early onset arthritis, typing on a computer keyboard is still quite easy for me. My fingers fumble with small buttons on a sweater, but find the keyboard keys, no problem. Finding the right thoughts to express with those keys is a different story altogether.
I’ve written as a hobby all my life, but this whole blogging idea was quite intimidating to me — still is sometimes. Right off the bat, I received some great mentorship from the team at BDN, including Erin Rhoda, Maine Press Association’s Journalist of the Year for 2016. This collective has exercised Mother Teresa-level patience with me.
I mean, I’m technologically incompetent, my ideas are all over the place, and let’s face it, I can occasionally run a bit … well, it’s a word that rhymes with itchy and starts with the letter B. The BDN team stuck with me, though, no matter what.
That’s why when I learned that I won a Maine Press Association award in October, I thought of Erin, Matt, Pattie, Dan, Sarah, Nick, et al. Next, I thought of my readers, who like the team at BDN, got me through the most intimidating, rocky periods as I acclimated to this role. In my mind, my readers and my supporters won an award because it is most certainly something I could not have achieved on my own.
It is such an honor to know that people take the time to share my thoughts, and I have benefitted from reader feedback — even the critics! Who knew my thick skin could use another layer of callouses?! I’ve actually developed an email friendship with one of my most ardent critics — go figure!
And it is such an honor to be a part of the larger conversation we all have about the issues and events going on around us, especially when people let me know that I’ve expressed something important to them. I’ve shared some powerful moments with readers and with people I’ve met doing research and interviews. This blog is constant opportunity to remind myself just how awesome Mainers are!
So please know that when I accepted my certificate last Saturday night, I was accepting it on behalf of a whole bunch of people!
Thanks so much, and I look forward to continuing the conversation!
Special personal thank you: I also am grateful to my two boys, who have stood by their mom through thick and thin, including being very supportive of my go at blogging. My youngest even came to the awards dinner with me. Everything I do is in one part, due to them because they have helped to make me a far better person than I would have been without them!
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