Today, I am thankful for Jim Sheeler.
I owe my early writing career to Professor Bauer in Louisa May Alcott's Little Women. When he urged Jo to write from her own experiences, I knew that he was also speaking to me.
In recent years, Denver journalist, Jim Sheeler, has inspired my writing. After he won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for feature story writing, I sent him a congratulatory email. Long story short, my email was one of four that later appeared as a "letter to the editor" in the Rocky Mountain News.
Mr. Sheeler turned his winning story into a full-length book with the same title, "Final Salute." Last night, his book tour brought him to Colorado Springs. I attended, of course. I don't have many opportunities to meet a Pulitzer Prize winner.
Here's my letter to the editor and the link to the prize-winning story.
When I read that Jim Sheeler and Todd Heisler of thehad each won a 2006 for their story “Final Salute,” I just had to write to say, “Congratulations! Well done!”http://www.rockymountainnews.com/special-reports/final-salute/
In particular, I am one of Sheeler’s most loyal fans. I’ve studied his writing and use his articles as models for my own essays and poems. He is one of the reasons why I continue to subscribe to the News.
About his writing, I love:
-The quiet undertones of emotion and empathy.
-The concise yet elegantly worded sentences; the language never flowery or forced.
-The telling of a compelling and often memorable story no matter the topic.
-His compassion for the person or subject — I can feel it, yet it doesn’t interfere with the facts or event.
-The delicate balance of objectivity and intimacy.
Thank you, Mr. Sheeler, for your marvelous pieces. They’ve changed my life and view of the world.
For this blessing, I am grateful.