Why this college graduate is choosing to stay in Philadelphia: should a graduate move on?

Standing on the famed steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in October 2005.

Standing on the famed steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in October 2005.

I was given an open invitation for an entry level job writing copy for CNN.com in Atlanta. The pay was bad, and the reporting probably rudimentary, but it was a good name, a position with a clear line of succession and a straight path to New York or Los Angeles – the media markets in which professors and professionals tell young journalists we want to be. There the money is good and the reporting is top-level.

Instead, I am trying to get a job in Philadelphia – a city that has hated itself for at least the last half-century. Let me tell you why.

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Thoughts on City Paper cover story on Philly porn star

Photo by Michael T. Regan for CityPaper

Photo by Michael T. Regan for CityPaper

So turns out one of today’s biggest, brightest and youngest upcoming porn stars lives in South Philadelphia.

And really, where else could Stoya live.

Philadelphia City Paper devoted its latest cover story to her. Nearly 5,000 words, friends. Writer Matt Stroud is getting beaten up a bit in the blogosphere and on the story comments – though some are complimentary – and there’s been some buzz around it, so I gave it a read, though I’m currently out of Philly.

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Philadelphia, I need a place to live

My former home in Philadelphia on the 3300-block of North Park Avenue.

My former home in Philadelphia on the 3300-block of North Park Avenue.

I am moving to Philadelphia.

Back to Philadelphia. So, I am looking for a home. Another home.

For two years, I lived on the bottom floor of a row home in the 3300-block of North Park Avenue in the Lower Tioga neighborhood of North Philadelphia.

I walked to the Allegheny stop on the Broad Street line. I had a 15-minute bicycle ride to Center City. I had a big bed, a tall ceiling and a full kitchen. I never paid more than $400, utilities included. I didn’t pay for water.

That’s not happening again. I’m just trying to remind myself I was spoiled and now that I am a big, old, adult what I need in a home has changed somewhat.

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WDSTL Highlights: professional merit from backpacking Europe

Sean Blanda (left) and I at the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France on Oct. 12, 2008.

Sean Blanda (left) and me at the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France on Oct. 12, 2008.

I’ve been backpacking Europe.

I returned last week and have been getting out from underneath the transition since then.

Though this is a blog on being a young journalist housed on my professional site, I can’t help but share some of the blogging and podcasting I did on WeDontSpeaktheLanguage.com.

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Your life as a press release

Last month I posted about my fulfilling internship with the Philadelphia Business Journal from the spring. Then I offered advice about attracting attention to your press releases.

I got some great clips there and learned more about newsroom dynamics, but I also got a taste of nine to five life. Business reporting didn’t get me out of the office much, and most often I was pouring over hundreds of those press releases and choosing one each week to profile.

I remember thinking then and came about it again. Is my life worth profiling, chosen by some idiot 22-year-old intern?

I’m scared of the answer.

Photo from UtahWebServices.

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Young, new media writer and journalist looking for Philadelphia accommodations: a cover letter

wil-write-for-health-insurance-wink

Somebody hire me.

I have returned from more than a month of backpacking Europe and travel podcasting at WeDontSpeaktheLanguage.com.

Now I am excited to put all I have learned to work in one of the world’s great cities. So, here’s my idealistic plea.

I want challenging work in Philadelphia; work that requires me to write about, learn and explore this city and the people living in it. I want to live in it too, riding my bicycle and SEPTA and eating water ice the whole while. Oh, and let’s get one of those 44 million uninsured Americans on the right path.

See my resume here; check my portfolio.

If you know of something, contact me. Even if you just have a suggestion or some advice, or if your grandmother’s neighbor once freelanced for TV Guide. While I have applied for a few opportunities, believe me, I am open to others.

Want to know more read on.

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I'm home from Europe, WDSTL

Sean Blanda (right) and I on Oct. 1, leaving from Newark Airport to begin our trip in London.

Sean Blanda (right) and I on Oct. 1, leaving from Newark Airport to begin our trip in London.

I returned this past week from more than a month of backpacking Europe with college buddy Sean Blanda. While there, he and I travel blogged and podcasted at WeDontSpeaktheLanguage.com.

This week I am going to roll out some highlights and lessons learned, though Sean beat me to the latter.

One of those lessons, I’m afraid, will involve being hacked, as we were just that. (Check WDSTL, we may not have corrected by the time you read this).

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One year ago: part of a panel discussion on high school newspapers

Mike Levin speaks on a panel about young reporters, with Dorothy Gilliam moderating, and Acel Moore, me, and Prime Mover participants looking on at fall 2007 JEA conference.

On Nov. 9 2007, one year ago today, after founding and leading a student newspaper at the Franklin Learning Center for a school year and a half, I was asked to present and take part in a panel discussion on youth journalism at the Journalism Education Association conference held at the Marriot in Center City, Philadelphia Nov. 8-11.

The panel was called “Building Journalism Programs Outside the Curriculum.” See the program here [PDF].

Among others, I was proud to speak alongside Pulitzer-Prize winner Acel Moore, among the journalists I most respect, and Philadelphia Inquirer photographer Mike Levin.

I mostly focused on the challenges I faced, contrasted with the effect it had on the small stable of loyal participants I found.

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Congratulations, President Obama

It will be an event I will tell my children about. John McCain wasn’t running as John McCain.

Unfairly, unjustly untruly or not, it seemed the media – particularly in Europe, from my experience – wanted Barack Obama in the office.

He has been anointed as part of a great achievement of American freedom. As a supporter of the U.S. president, I hope he can do it. But he has to exceed the level of excitement around him that prompted one supporter to tell a CNN TV camera: “you hear about people seeing Ghandi and Martin Luther King…”

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