Aspiring reporter learns a hard lesson in the rules of journalism

EL PASO ­– Ever since I can remember I have always wanted to be a writer. When I was in high school I was a student who constantly got into trouble for various things, and once an angry teacher asked me what I was going to do with my life. I thought he wanted to open up and talk and I answered him that I wanted to be a writer. He laughed at me and stated: “The way you’re headed, I wouldn’t be surprised if I see you asking for money in the streets and living under a bridge.”

Those words always stuck to me, that is until I enrolled in college. I never finished high school and began working, eventually got married and had a daughter.

The Dead Bolts is one of only three other men’s roller derby teams in Texas. (Amber Watts/

Roller derby got me down

EL PASO – The interview process with the men’s roller derby teams had been stimulating, attending the practice had been inspiring (although a little scary at times), and the writing process had been consuming. Altogether writing about one of Texas’ few men’s roller derby teams brewing right here was one of the best experiences I’ve had as a journalist in El Paso. After three years of journalistic writing, this was the story I was the most amped about covering. After months of waiting for the chance to get the story, hours of work, and bubbling excitement – my story was published. I sent a text of ‘thanks!’ and ‘hope you enjoy’ to my sources, and anxiously waited for their texts back of approval.