by Zach DeBruin

Today marks a day in my journalism history that will go down in the books for years. This is my first column. It took me forever to think of something to write about, but then it hit me: write about how hard it is to write one of these things. I promise you it is a lot harder than it looks.
You have to sit down and brainstorm for countless hours, trying to think of a topic that won’t set everyone off in a fiery rage, but still make it interesting and maybe a bit controversial.
Everything from politics to personal stories have been used for these sacred columns, and that makes it difficult to find fresh information. The best advice I’ve gotten from anyone on how to write a column is to just go on a blind rant. Type as fast as possible and as much as possible, and something will come out sounding good sooner or later. Yeah, that doesn’t work for me. Not yet anyway.
I’m hoping to grow out of the blankness that sets in as soon as the deadline is set for the completion of a column, because I know that I am going to have plenty more of these things in the future, and they aren’t going to get any easier.
Yeah, I could have written about the atrocious thought of Donald Trump become Mr. President 2k16, or how that hospital in Afghanistan was completely blown to pieces by the U.S. Military, but those subjects bore me. I strive to be original, making the simple things in life poetic and creative.
I like to think of life as short and worthy of our time. You can’t make it through life without settling down to look at the simple things that just brighten a day. Plus, the big news gets over-announced in my opinion. It’s all that anyone talks about.
Writing a column, to me, is similar to picking the right person to trust with your secrets. One wrong choice, and it could screw everything up. If I were to choose a subject too “loud” in its opinions, it could sink me. If I chose a story that is bland and boring, then no one will want to read it. Hoping that this subject was somewhere in between, I went for it.
But anyway, back to my main point. I challenge any reader of this column to sit down and brainstorm random ideas for a solid, interesting and debatable story. Write them all down on a piece of paper, and keep them somewhere safe. I mean like lock-and-key safe. Maybe give them to the bank and have them kept in a lock box. Let NO ONE see or hear of these ideas. Because one of these days I’ll be needing another column idea, and now I know where to go.