That $110 SPJ dinner date (but the emcee was worth every penny)

Dateline: Sat 10 May 2008

Buddy Jim Hall, a refreshing, humorous new voice to the rural Indiana blogging scene ( wrote a couple weeks back to let me know that this blog was on the chopping block at the recent Society of Professional Journalists' annual banquet.

Oh, ouchy? Not a'tall. As a member of the Abdul Hakim-Shabazz school of thought -- there is no such thing as bad publicity -- I was curious enough to get in touch with the ever-talented writer Lou Harry, who for four years has served as emceee for that shindig.

I asked Lou if he was digging away, and here is what he said:

"It was part of a bit talking about all of the Star spin-offs.,,,,,, and of course,"


Almost as rich as what Jim Hall shared, about his experience with the gala:

"I got a third-place for magazine writing for a piece I did for Brian Smith and his defunct Greenwood Living magazine. Thank God I got paid for it before it folded after four issues (smile). My wife and I spent $90 on the banquet tickets and $20 to enter the contest. So, that was $110 for a piece of paper that wasn't even framed or laminated. I put it in a $3 Wal-Mart frame, so that brought my investment into my Mickey Mouse third-place certificate to $113."

Let's sing the chorus again, writers and toy writers: There is no such thing as money in the craft. And it ain't a profession -- one reason not to join the Society of Professional Journalists. Please, get over yourselves.

Finally, an update on the prolific Lou Harry, the arts and entertainment writer at Indianapolis Business Journal. The guy is a book machine. He and Todd Tobias have two new titles coming out: The Entourage Handbook and Kid Culture. Plus Lou is now writing under the pen name Louise Harriet (it's a manual for husband-training). (Really).

So please, check 'em out: (for Harry's books) and (for Jim Hall's take on life in Shelby County, or Shebby, as the locals call it).

Signing off from Put-man.


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