Earlier today on Twitter, a former colleague Niel Bekker of The Huffington Post asked a simple question, “Why did you decide to become a journalist?”
My answer was simple: 9/11. I promised to expand on it later in more than 140 characters. Here’s my explanation, an excerpt from a chapter I wrote in ”The Big Book of Social Media.”
“On September 11th, 2001, the world changed forever. The political, economic, social and cultural ramifications of that event both in the United States and internationally were substational. The event was also deeply personal for many, including myself.
It was on that day that I determined I wanted to be a journalist. I watched in awe as reporters covered the story, providing a critical public service at a time of crisis, and how they handled it so well. In the days and weeks ahead, I was glued to the media coverage as journalists pieced together what had happened, why and who was behind it, and the many stories behind recovery efforts and lives lost.
I had always been interested in writing, and at that time, I realized I wanted to go into journalism and pursue public service myself.”
It’s probably no surprise then that to this day big news stories, breaking news, the opportunity to provide context, traditional journalism, and ultimately a public service are what get my creative juices flowing.
I still think it’s a bit surreal I now live in New York City. I could have never imagined it a decade ago. My first 9-11 here was certainly emotional.