ALLVOICES.com is a great place for writers and readers to contribute and get their news. Behind the scenes of this news site is a man who is amazing to me. I call him a magician, because when you open one of his articles to read, you never know what you are going to get. What is he going to pull out of his journalistic, creative, and mysterious hat of tricks, next?
His name is Robert Weller and here is just a short summary of my experience with this journalistic genius.
Last night on CNN I saw this BREAKING (they kept calling it) news story about Yemen. Since, I didn't see anything on ALLVOICES about it, I slammed out the info in a very short article and went to bed.
I got up late to find emails from Robert Weller that he had edited it, he educated me on how my story was behind and to go here or there to update and find the latest, etc. (I have asked him to tell me when I do things wrong and to edit anytime) Today, as I am doing college homework, I decided to check on the story before I buckled down, and guess what?
Robert updated it again--I don't know how many times this man has updated my stories behind the scenes and given me tips on how to be a better writer and fixed my mistakes, but he is like an editor for ALLVOICES.
He is a professor on how to write breaking news, he is an amazingly generous person, and has instructed me this way or that numerous times. I have heard he hasn't just helped me, but many others the same way.
One time, he asked me to write a story about "breaking tornado news," knowing very well he could slam it out in a heartbeat, but instead he asked me to do it. He watched my every move virtually. After I posted, he gave me tips, "Make sure you cite your sources, do this, don't do that, good job, etc." I felt like I was in writer's bootcamp.
I told my husband, "Robert didn't need me to write that story, he just wanted to teach me...that whole thing was about him teaching me to write breaking news better."
He edited and added to that story. Cathy (Birdpond), another ALLVOICES contributor, who was IN the tornado had interacted with us as well. It was such a rush and an amazing moment in time I will never forget. Why did he spend all that time with me?
The amount of time he has spent on helping me and others is priceless, just priceless. I feel like I have taken a journalism class, but better because these stories really do get published and people around the world read them.
This man spent years as a professional journalist for major outlets. Now he spends his days on ALLVOICES teaching, mentoring, and getting down in the foxholes with us when some of the comments are just downright cruel.
Weller defends us in the comment area, under our own articles, when others get nasty. He has taken quite a few hits for us -- I've seen the commenter turn away from the writer and start shooting at him. Sometimes, it is a war zone being a writer where others have freedom to comment and say whatever they want. But it feels safer when Robert steps in and becomes a buffer.
He supports so many writers. He encourages, he pours his knowledge into others, and he defends.
Why does he help so many people?
Why does he do so much for others to make them better writers?
I hope he gets appreciated.
He should get a medal of honor.
I hope he gets a purple heart!
Written by: A Student of Professor Robert Weller and a contributor for ALLVOICES.com
WHO IS ROBERT WELLER?
Robert Weller, a history major and a history lover, has been a journalist for nearly 40 years, mostly for The Associated Press. He has covered wars, coups, earthquakes, the Alaska pipeline, massacres (domestic and foreign), as well as opera, theater, and movies. He was the head of the AP New York desk the day Saigon fell.
He's based in Denver with his South African-born wife and two faux jumeaux (that's French for boy-girl twins). He loves classical, Brazilian and other music, as well as skiing. A graduate of William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo., his father was an Army-Air Force lifer.
More about Robert and his poem published on Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-wel
WHAT IS ALLVOICES.com?
A great place to write and learn: http://www.allvoices.com/
I love writing from my heart and soul on ALLVOICES, this article came from my sincere heart and appreciation for Robert Weller.