Within the next few days, I am starting a new feature that feeds into what I feel called to do — tell the stories of communities that are seldom heard.
Finding home, a category which will appear on this mtnmamaadventures blog, was created because often I find myself running out of room when telling stories at work.
As a journalist with over 25 years of experience working in small- to medium-sized communities, I know some stories get cast aside because sometimes we have other priorities.
Sometimes during our attempt to cover things, we tend to gloss over things that we don’t understand, make us uncomfortable or things we worry will make people mad at us.
For example, I plan to look at how two Southern towns dealt with the blight caused by the closing of the local cotton mill in different ways.
I plan to look at how communities are trying to rebuild after suffering from decades of gun violence and marginalization.
I also am working on a story about restoring a great little building that has traces of the South’s past carved into its walls.
As a journalist, I have seen families lament the senseless violence that took a family member’s life. I have seen how these incidents spark something good and I want to help that goodness grow. I also want to point out ways these incidents have been ignored or dealt with.
It’s been a little over a year since Makiia Slade, an energetic 9-year-old, was shot and killed and her mother injured, while they were travelling at night down a local highway. A trip they probably took hundreds of times … and that particular trip was deadly.
Despite the community’s outrage, the case is still unsolved. There are no leads. As the editor of the newspaper that covered the incident when it happened, I can’t let it go. She was the same age as my youngest son at the time. As a mother, I can’t let it go.
My blog is about adventuring, which is more than physical and mental fitness. Adventuring sometimes means looking at things through new ways and sharing what you’ve learned.
Most journalists don’t do it for the money. It’s because they feel the rush — like a runner’s high — of covering certain things or meeting deadlines.
By writing here, I’ll have the space to give certain issues the room, and maybe the spotlight, they need to grow.