Speaking at UMass Can Be Fun…or Dreadful

I’m just about ready to leave the office to go to UMass and lecture BJ Roche’s ‘Writing for the Web’ class at 1:25 today. I looked all around for the papers I had prepared, and can’t locate them…but the main point I’ll make is how to stand out from the crowd.

These classes, taking place in a computer lab after lunch, can be brutal. Brutal in that kids who go to UMass often don’t give a damn about what the professor or her special guest has to say. So I sometimes feel like I am talking to four walls. But I usually take the time to go around the room and ask each student what they like to write about. I pray they’ll answer ‘features’ or even better, ‘travel,’ but usually, most of them want to write about sports. Ugh. Well I do like sports but sportswriting ain’t my game and I can’t counsel them much about that.

Some times there are bright and inquisitive people who have questions and are interested in my speil. That’s what keeps me going. Some times, even, we get a writer who wants to submit a story, or somebody who is interested in how we successfully have built up a web publishing business. I just hope that these kids show up to today’s class. ED. NOTE: The class went great, fun, inquisitive bunch all writers looking at things from a different point of view.