From Classroom Assignment to the Final Draft: How I Became a Published Writer

By Christopher Giovinco 

Christopher was recently published in Newsday. Here, he writes about his experience.

Coming Up With the Topic

As I was finishing my Introduction to Newswriting course at Molloy this summer, my professor, Richard Conway, asked me to write a column. “This column can be about anything,” he stressed to me. I thought to myself: What better topic to write about than out-of-control Little League parents and coaches? Not only was this topic fresh in my mind because I had recently attended a Little League game, I knew it was something relatable to most people. So, for my final summer assignment, I handed in a first draft of what many people have now read in Newsday.

Why Did I Submit My Article to Newsday?

After reading and grading my article, Professor Conway had only compliments and constructive criticism for me. He absolutely loved my piece and quickly mentioned that it had the potential to be published in Newsday. He brought me a copy of the previous Sunday’s paper and highlighted the Expressway section for me. Expressway is a short column that is published every Sunday in Newsday. This section is unique because its content is written and submitted by readers. After Mr. Conway explained this to me,  I was immediately on board to submit my Little League piece.

Transferring From the Classroom to Newsday

The process necessary to see yourself published in the Expressway section of Sunday’s paper is less tedious than one would expect. My only obligation was to send them a copy of my written draft that I had handed into my professor already. After that, I waited. But I didn’t have to wait too long, because within just a few short days they got back to me. The Newsday news opinion editor informed me that he enjoyed my article and that if I was willing to make a few quick changes in formatting,  he would help edit and size down the piece and I would be on my way to publication. I moved a few things around with the help of the Newsday staff, and I was ecstatic to hear that my piece would be published in the next available Expressway section.

Seeing My Article in the Paper

Needless to say, it felt great to be a part of this unique and eye-opening opportunity. Not only did I receive recognition and congratulations from much of my family, friends, and peers, I had an indescribable feeling of self-accomplishment. I can now add this to my resume as extra writing experience, and I learned a lot about the editing and publication processes in the meantime. It was both an honor and a privilege to be given this opportunity, and I hope to be able to be part of something like it again soon.

Top image via Flickr, right image courtesy of Christopher Giovinco. 

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