A light at the end of the tunnel brightened by an award nomination

It's my last week at Creative Loafing, so I can see a light at the end of this tunnel. Three more stories to write. One more front page to approve. Four more pieces to edit. Twenty-five more emails to send (well, that's just a low estimate).

I expected today to be fairly low-key. It was my final Tuesday ever at the Loaf -- fun fact: I've spent roughly 430 Tuesdays in this newspaper office -- and I'd finalized my pages earlier than usual.

An hour before the issue was due to the printer (who is located in Fayetteville), the Internet went down. 

You really become aware of how dependent you are on technology when the free-flowing hose of information and connectivity gets cut off. #firstworldproblems

The newspaper gods must have felt sorry for us because we managed to get the pages uploaded only one hour late. I can't even begin to try to explain to you how we did that with spotty Internet connection. But it worked out.

Because of the no-Internet thing, it wasn't until I got home this evening I discovered that one of my writers is a finalist in the annual Association of Alternative Newsmedia contest. "Charlotte is ground zero for coal ash" was written and published last year for Creative Loafing by Rhiannon Fionn, an independent journalist whom I first worked with when she was an intern for us. She went on to become a hard-working freelance journalist and is now producing a documentary that shares the stories of people all over the country affected by coal ash.

I am over the moon for Rhi and this honor. One of the things I really wanted to make sure we accomplished with this cover story was making the topic as accessible as possible. Coal ash is not sexy -- hell, environmental reporting isn't sexy. But it's important stuff, and I'm happy to see the story get the recognition it deserves.

So, allow me to revise my earlier assessment of my final week at Creative Loafing. Three more stories to write. One more front page to approve. Four more pieces to edit. Twenty-five more emails to send. And one more celebratory blog to pen. 

 

May 2014 cover of Creative Loafing, illustrated by Henry Eudy and designed by Melissa Oyler

May 2014 cover of Creative Loafing, illustrated by Henry Eudy and designed by Melissa Oyler