Kimm Montone, a staff writer for the REPUBLICAN & Herald newspaper, located in Pennsylvania's eastern coal region, is one of 12 reporters taking part in a unique online course going on now on News University, Poynter's online training site, funded by the Knight Foundation. If you haven't check out NewsU's rich collection of free online courses--just point your broswer to http://www.newsu.org--you're cheating yourself.
The one I've involved with costs money and is closed to all but the enrolled participants. It's four-weeks long and focuses on one of my favorite and most personally Instructive subjects--the process approach to writing. It'ss the most exciting and fun teaching I've done in I don't know how long, and I've got a great teaching gig at Poynter already. A major reason: Casey Frechette, an interactive learning producer, and his Newsu colleagues. Together we've made videos, recorded podcasts, developed interactive assignments. I could go on and on and probably will someday.
Because the point of this post is to share a story.
For a coaching session this week, I asked everybody in the course to send me a story by a writer they admired and might want to emulate. There have been several great picks.
Kimm Montone's choice was this recent piece about a body collector in Detroit by Charlie LeDuff of the New York Times. It's part of his "American Album" series described as "Portraits of offbeat Americans...with videos that appear every other Monday."
Explaining his pick, Kimm wrote: "Charlie LeDuff is one of my favorite writers. His stories jump off the page, he paints vivid images and includes it into the larger picture. After reading his stories, I'm amazed by his talent and ability."
As KimM was, as I am, and, I'll bet, as you will be, too.