Top 10 Things I’ve Learned Writing This Column

It’s incredible to think that this week it has been five whole years since I started writing this goofy and sometimes inane weekly piece. Sometimes it’s been a lot of fun; other times, not so much. But it has been a great time all in all, now that I think back in retrospect. It has been an incredible little journey, and I have learned a lot here. Ergo, here is a “Top 10” list of things I have noticed along the way.

People Will Surprise: I came into this thing not really realizing that people could write back in something called a “comments” section. For every anonymous “you suck,” there were two-fold thoughtful insights to whatever subject was being discussed that week, often by far more grandiose writers than myself (uh, that part wasn’t too tough).

Books Are Popular: When I started writing a “book recommend” quarterly summary, these columns became the most viewed, shared, and commented upon posts. Book nerds are cool.

Apologies: When I wrote a column to Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl concerning my genuine heartache about never trying to get a hold of them when Kurt Cobain passed, it opened up a whole new writing slant that felt like a car wash for the soul. That is when I started writing those stories that eventually became my book.

Editors: Never being a writer prior to this gig at Seattle Weekly, I of course never had the experience of working with an editor. I owe a whole slew and ton of thanks to the wonderful and professor-like guidance of the great Chris Kornelis. He guided me through some tough spots, and some wonderful victories.

I Have To Write This Weekly? Crap! You mean I have to write this four times a month, month in and month out? Finding ideas to write about has really honed my ability to observe social behavior. The trick has been not to let my friends in on the fact that I was sometimes checking them out for the selfish reason of writing a column about them.

Funny Shit: Sometimes, life just gets funny. Writing about tour life always was the easiest place to find this stuff. “Fart Tennis” and “Ass-To-Ass Dog” are just two that come immediately to mind. Observing and writing about the humorous stuff in life is something I always hope I get a chance to do.

Great Peers and Colleagues: Writing alongside John Roderick, Krist Novoselic, and Jessie Sykes is something in this life I never imagined I’d have the honor to get a stab at. Thank you, guys.

The Readers: Have always kept things either educational, brutal, poignant, and forward thinking. We have discussed things here that came close to blows, or conversely, e-french kissing. You have been a class act every last one of you.

Interviews: While I will be the very first to say that I suck at these, it was completely fun doing the Jack White and Johnny Marr discussions and exposes.

You Fans Give Back: Whenever you have found a just cause here, like the Ronald McDonald House, or the father of a dying child who had his truck stolen, or the mountaineer Tim Medvetz who is taking limbless young veterans up high mountains, you all contribute to the world in meaningful ways with much more than your comments on my column.

I thank you all for these five wondrous years. I am indebted to you, and always look forward to meeting you in a coffee shop, bookstore, or airport line. My hat is off to one and all.

Duff McKagan

8/21/2013

 
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