As a veteran journalist, I am often asked what single quality is most needed for my job. While difficult to narrow the choices to only one, a curious nature ranks high. It certainly helps to be observant.
Journalism can be creative but it is not creative writing. At its best, you are telling someone’s story; not your own. The first thing you need to tell is “Who/What?’ If you're not interested in exploring the “Who/What” then “Where and Why” aren’t going to follow easily. “Result” doesn’t always happen, but when it does, it’s very satisfying.
My career began in high school as the editor of the school paper. It morphed in college; I went from being a terrible artist to a fairly knowledgeable contemporary art reporter. Writing about art led to writing about beauty, beauty to fashion, fashion to features and much of this led to travel.
Reporting, writing and editing have taken me from New Orleans to New York and back…now, my “beat” is the world. All the art training still comes in handy. I want my readers to “see, feel and smell” the story through words and photographs.
I can’t think of a more fulfilling profession. It’s given me opportunities, experiences and access no money can ever buy. I’ve been blessed by a Pope and the Dalai Lama in the same week. Covered fashion collections in Paris, Milan and New York. Traveled to India, Botswana and Burma. And been fortunate to work amazing talents: Artists, models, architects, designers, chefs, chieftains, and artisans. Some have told their story sitting cross-legged on floors hand-cutting gemstones, others while strolling through world-class museums reviewing their latest retrospective.