Several months ago I was getting settled into a new job at my local library when I came across one of my soon-to-be favorite sights: a cart full of brand new arrivals to be checked in and distributed to the stacks or waiting lists.
On this particular cart sat a book with with a sky-blue cover and one word emblazoning the spine. Lonely. A memoir by Emily White. I was a pretty solitary kid growing up and on into my early adulthood, and this one-word title spoke directly to me.
Within the week not only did I have the book in hand, but I was determined to interview the author and sell the story. Too many people suffered from loneliness, I thought. I'd really like the mainstream press to cover something like this.
But selling stories isn't as easy as it used to be. Lots of places will gladly take a writer's wares for next to nothing (so artists and writer's are subject to socialism, but we can't get socialized medicine to take care of us when we're ill?!). Despite my insatiable need to volunteer in my community, I draw the line at working for free.
Luckily I did manage to get the story sold, to the St. Petersburg Times (my first story for them, if you don't count the music story I did in February for their free tabloid tbt*).
There's no reward quite like writing what you know.