(Here at Jen Manor, 11 p.m. is pretty late.)
Anyone who flunks out of college in a dramatic, splashy way but comes back later to not only finish their degree and but also get an advanced degree, is usually a very cool person.
In college, the rough-looking professors who wear jeans and smoke and swear are cool. The ones who wear blazers and 70s-style metal-framed glasses are pompous. There will be no surprises.
As a student, I am dramatically happier when I have teachers that I really like and that I feel understand me. There are probably all kinds of embarrassing Freudian reasons for this.
I prefer nerds to writers. I certainly don’t dislike writers, but the nerd people feel like my people in a way that other writers do not. Given the choice between eating at a table full of nerds and a table full of journalists, there is no question as to where I would want to be, or fit in better.
A newswriting class should be a requirement for anyone who writes nonfiction or writes for the web. A newswriting class is probably not a bad idea for anyone who wants to write professionally. At least pick up the six news values and the inverted pyramid, and be able to write several different kinds of leads skillfully.
It won’t kill you to interview someone in person. Yes, (in my opinion) it’s true that it’s in writing that the soul is best revealed. But really, meeting someone and talking to them is good, too. It’s the other half of the rough impression that as an introvert I tend to forget about.