Writer Rob Neyer recently left ESPN for SB Nation and in his first column for SBN, he articulates the difference between “us” (professional journalists) and them (readers).
I’ve never thought of myself as a member of us rather than them.
I’ve got a lot of passions, and generally I won’t bore you with them. But the passion I indulge almost every day of my life is good writing. I crave it, and when I find it, I treasure it. I surround myself with books full of good writing, and I can’t get through the day without scribbling down a brilliant sentence or delightful word in a thick journal that’s always close at hand.
Also, it’s my business. I’m one of the lucky few who gets paid to indulge his first love.
Where the good writing comes from, though, is irrelevant. All that matters is the writing.
You’re paid to write? I know lots of professional writers who either never learned to write well, or have forgotten. You work for a famous website or newspaper? The big boys don’t have a monopoly on good writing, let alone facts.
Sportswriting, like writing about computing or video games, lends itself especially well to amateur participation because you’ve got, what, tens of millions of people who, even at an early age, are basically experts on football, baseball, basketball, hockey, etc. because they’ve grown up playing, watching, and analyzing those sports. The actual writing bit is harder but the passion is definitely there. (via hello typepad)