Barry Max is Back Jack (Sorry Dave, I Know the Title is Lame, but They Can’t All Be Zingers)

journalism.jpgI have been a busy man.
I have found myself – in demand?
Even in a small market rust belt like Central New York I still consider my transformation a bit surrealistic.

It all started with my lay-off/firing from The Utica Phoenix.


The once mighty monthly newsmagazine was the first place where I was consistently published. Aside from reporting I performed an insane amount of tasks for my editor and chief. In the process I established myself as a fixer of sorts- someone who can get anything done. Sort of like Michael Clayton sans the Mercedes and law degree.


You would be shocked by the number and variety of proposals I am subject to hear on any given day.

How do I translate my wide ranging connections that cross demographics and universes into a viable living?

Public relations perhaps.

In a lot of ways my freelancing is a very inexpensive(free) form of publicity. I am pitched stories daily.

People are looking for my writing.


I used to struggle to find stuff to write about now I have found myself literally sifting through subject matter.

What is news?


I write for an entertainment weekly with an eye on political,and cultural awareness. A new and emerging voice in our community. I can’t help but feel I am a part of that. We picked up where the Utica Phoenix left off. The Utica Phoenix had a simliar upsurge in interest when I started writing for them.

Now that I, along with a few others, have left. That interest has died.

It is not me- it is what I represent.


The appetite for real biting commentary in a digestable language is in demand.The best thing that I ever heard that has helped me the most is:

“David I love your writing but you use too many big words.”


I want everyone to understand me. Everyone from the Penthouse to the gutter should know where I am coming from.

I have submited some of my more controversial blog posts-they ran them…The Whistle Blower Blues, 911 truth, My ode to family reunions.

My editor Ken Polisse was courageous- he weathered all the phone calls and said ‘give me more’.

The publisher, P.A.- he’s a bad-ass. He knows the advertising for that particular publication has increased- they are one aggressive push away from demographic dominance in this market.
The paper is locally relevant.

Ken took a gamble with me his startegy worked, he just made a vertical career leap. That can only help my resume because he never changed my copy accept for one article.

No wait a minute – a few articles, but there was only one change that actually bothered me.

Kudos Ken.


I know am the first guy in the area to submit a story with a decidely Gay subject matter HOW SHOCKING.


Margaret ho er’- I mean Cho- is not revolutionary but around here, in this corner of America, she is.
Ken has moved on but my new editor Leeanne Root is off to a good start.

The online edition of the paper has a video feed- that is her inaugaural gesture. She brought something new right away.

Yeah I am kissing a little ass but she deserves it.
It is a win win situation. I am self employed, unburdened by anything but myself. They (The Life and Times of Utica- google em’) are extremely flexible and have an appetite for insightful reporting- believe me I have competition. Once people found out I was just submitting work they tried.

It ain’t as easy as I make it look.
I was born to do what I am doing right now.
You are probably wondering how I ended up on radio and T.V.

I am too.

The radio spot was on a small market show in a small market which makes it the equivalent of highschool radio- but it wasn’t It was WHCL Hamilton College’s radio I was invited for a Black History month interview.

I waxed poetic for three hours, it was marathon radio, I was immediately addicted. People called in and I was able to demonstrate my encyclopaedic knowledge of popular culture past and present.
I , for a moment, was a pundit.

I felt like a car salesman who could drop to a dollar and still get paid for a million.

So that was the radio spot- I know…you’re thinking – big deal.

To me, it was.
So later in the same week I go to my community meeting, pen and pad in hand, to see what they got going. They appoint me the spokesperson for The Cornhill Neighborhood Association.
“Dave your well spoken.”

“He’s perfect.”
I pretended to reluctantly accept, but inside I was flattered and honored.
The next week they schedule me for the WKTV Evening News.

I would be on Newstalk sandwiched between the snowmobile report and weekend weather.
From what I am told I did great.

All I did was speak clearly, gesture with my hands a lot and smile.

It was a six minute interview and I was able to vocalize a lot of things I write about now.
It was a message of alignment. I felt like unifying spirit who snuck on the airwaves.

I will be doing another radio show on February the 29th . This time it will be WIBX which is a local newsradio station.

The conversation gets serious now.
But I am ready.
No matter what happens freelancing is still working.
In fact, it is time for me start to really write.


~ by barrymax on March 2, 2008.

2 Responses to “Barry Max is Back Jack (Sorry Dave, I Know the Title is Lame, but They Can’t All Be Zingers)”

  1. The radio thing is a big deal. I suppose one could say that if a moran such as Michael Weiner Savage, whose only talent is uninformed hate, can make fat radio bucks, it isn’t big, but talking on a level above, say, Dubya, isn’t the easiest thing to sell/promote/hawk.

    Unlike some of us, you can actually tell people that you’re a busy man, heh heh.

  2. Sounds like things are looking up. Congrats!

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