From the Newsroom: Editor at Large

Last year was a doozy.

Bryce Martin
Bryce Martin

By BRYCE MARTIN

DC Herald Editor

Posted Jan. 10, 2012

Last year was a doozy. The days leading up to 2013 entailed me packing up my apartment, hitting the open road and ending up parking my belongings in North Dakota.

I made the 18-hour sojourn from my home in Michigan to North Dakota in just under 26 hours. Chalk that up to driving 60 miles-per-hour all the way in a tight-fitting moving truck hauling my car that ended up mucked with salt, snow and sleet.

When I arrived in Killdeer merely a few days ago, I was not sure what 2013 had in store for me. Writing this column now, I’m still not too sure, but I think I can take solace in the fact that this area, and much of North Dakota, is experiencing similar uncertainty – what does this oil boom have in store for us in the long-term?

I have to mention I was not always a small town kind of guy. Please don’t hold that against me. I was born outside of Detroit, Mich., in the affluent neighborhood of Grosse Pointe, relocated to the burgeoning area of Sterling Heights when I was a bit older, and finally established myself, or rather my family, in Rochester Hills. I had followed my parents around different large communities within Michigan until I moved to Mount Pleasant to attend Central Michigan University, (a transition alone which could fill a year’s worth of columns).

There has always been something drawing me into small communities, which is where I found myself working in my first position as editor of a weekly newspaper in northern Lower Michigan. They were still reeling from the effects of their own oil boom and oil was the talk for most of the town.

In small towns, like Killdeer and most within Dunn County, I always believed the stereotype that everybody knows everybody and “Hey neighbor, can I borrow a cup of sugar for this pie?” but with today’s society, you never know what you’re going to get.

At 25 years old, I’m a confident person. That feeling of uncertainty comes wrapped with anxiety and excitement for me. That’s one part of my motivation.

When I accepted the role of editor of the Dunn County Herald and when I first met the people that I would be working alongside and felt the hospitality of some of the community members, I felt right at home. The small town stereotype transitioned into truth and it cleared all feelings of uncertainty from my mind.

This paper is the community’s single most important source of local news – that is a given, but I don’t want to maintain the status quo. I want this paper to thrive, unlike so many other publications out there today. I want this paper to reflect the heart of its community and boast the fact that, while we may lack large town amenities, we make that up with hard working hands.

As I write this column, I’m struck with the desire to throw myself into the heart of the community; to meet as many of you as I can and establish myself, so I can become a part of the “everyone knows everyone” ideal, but I guess that will have to wait until I at least finish this column.

I want so much for this paper and I believe we can forge into the future with bountiful successes (my statement, honestly – my bosses didn’t put me up to saying that).

I obviously know the feeling of uncertainty, as I laid it out here in front of you. But I want to make everyone understand that, when it comes to reading their morning paper over a hot cup of coffee or, if it’s late, a beer or a shot of Jack (whatever works for you), you will never have to face those feelings of uncertainty.

And what do I mean by that? Let’s just say the Dunn County Herald is dedicated to the communities it serves.

Contact Bryce Martin at bmartin@countrymedia.net.


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