What was your first job as a journalist?
Photographer and writer for the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang.
Have you ever used a typewriter?
I started in 10th grade and continued through my college years. When I was 19, my summer job was clerk typist at Fort Belvoir.
How is social media changing news?
News is much more available now but it tends to be more sensationalistic and it's also mixed with lots of annoying, tabloid-style stories.
Who's your favorite fictional journalist?
I'm embarrassed to write it's Kent Brockman.
What does it mean to be a journalist?
Being at the right place at the right time to capture the story or photo and then presenting it to the public in an interesting manner.
What's the funniest news-related #hashtag you've seen?
to hope a snowstorm will happen. I always have faith in the flakes even when it's laughable.
How do you prefer to be pitched on stories?
Covering events and stories of interest to me. I enjoy learning and discovering the entire story and finding out what is at the end?
What tools and software do you use to do your job?
WordPress, Photoshop, Premiere Pro, InDesign, Acrobat. Muse too.
What's your favorite social network?
Facebook. I joined to spy on my kids and now I'm an addict.
Who do you wish followed you?
Bob Ryan, Doug Hill, and Topper Shutt. I grew up watching them on the D.C. local news.
Why did you become a journalist?
Purely by accident. I loved to photograph the weather and I was asked to join a blog which later became the Washington Post's CWG.
Did you work for your high school newspaper? If so, what did you do there?
No, but I admired my friends who wrote for the school paper.
What story are you most proud of writing or working on?
The Derecho of 2012. The storm chase, photos, video, and associated lightning research. I felt it. It hurt.
What advice can you offer to aspiring journalists?
Find a day job so you can live where you want and cover the stories and topics that you desire.
When's the best time to pitch you?
What's the best pitch you ever got?
Photographing and interviewing kayakers running Great Falls. The pitch was from the kayaker I photographed free climbing the falls.
What's the worst pitch you ever got?
Taste testing cicadas. Ironically, that story became my most popular story and it went international. Eating bugs will attract attention.
What's your favorite drink?
Strong beer -- stouts, IPAs, and strong ale.
When you're not at a computer, where are you most likely to be?
Running, yoga, photographing, fishing, relic hunting, writing, kayaking, and taking breweries tours. Obviously, I have too many hobbies.
Aside from your own, what's your favorite publication to read?
What's the most common misperception about your beat?
That I can recite the current weather forecast at any moment of any day and then give advice about scheduling events around the weather.
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