I got to ask Rahm Emanuel a question, in person…

… Check out my post about my experience on my hyperlocal neighborhood blog here.

The whole experience made me question what kind of journalist I want to become. I started the Albany Park Post blog under citizen journalist sentiments, and if I were to get a degree in Journalism, it would only be if I decided to become a serious, hard-hitting journalist – something I never thought I would want to be.  I know whatever I am doing now, let’s call it a freelance writer thing,  I am not doing it properly. I am still paralyzed by various personal fears – for instance,  I’ve been sitting on a large story about a local art institution for months, and I haven’t finished it  because I don’t want to be sued (the female in my story is a little odd, and the suing type).

“If you’re not pissing someone off, you’re not doing it right”… I get that. But growing up, I wanted to be a lot of things… and a hard-hitting news journalist was never one of them.

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3 Comments on “I got to ask Rahm Emanuel a question, in person…”

  1. I don’t think you have to be “hard hitting” to be a journalist. There are lots of types of people who do journalistic work.

    I’m always fascinated about people obsessing over the journalist label. While I don’t doubt it’s an honorable profession, I don’t see what the big deal is. I recognize that a lot of what I do is clearly journalistic, but I don’t think of myself as a journalist at all.

    • Thanks Aaron.

      I think the obsession over the word comes from viewing journalists as newscasters, or detectives. I think of the movie “All the Presidents Men”. I think of a friend saying they would love to be jailed to protect a source.

      But maybe you are right… maybe I don’t need to be “hard hitting”. I do enjoy research…

      Or maybe it is because I have no clear niche. I don’t have one thing I write about and can call my area of expertise. How do I go about doing that?

      • I think a lot of people self-consciously set out to want to be “journalists”. Others like you and mean in this day and age just drift into what was traditionally part of that field, without necessarily being part of the journalistic “tribe”. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. I’m doing my thing, I’ll let other people do theirs. I think you should feel totally cool doing whatever you want, and not worrying about what a “real” journalist is. At least not if no one’s paying you the big bucks to do so.


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