Writing for a newspaper, you keep strict guidelines on what you right about. Even as a columnist, you’re not allowed to spread gossip or back up your argument with hearsay. Like, did you guys hear that Obama is an illegal alien? No, like an Extra Terrestrial alien, straight from Jupiter. He crash-landed here in 2006. After two years, he successfully took over AMERICA!!

The truth is, the truth is boring. What is exciting is sensation. Oh, you’re girlfriend broke up with you? Yaaaaaaaaawn! How about, your girlfriend cheated on you with your half-brother, so then you committed a brutal double homicide?

What is worse, now, is that what we think is sensational is not. At least fifty years ago, reporters squawked about murders and embezzlement scams, but now all that’s kept hush-hush. Now, the government’s part of the game, with all the Aces up its sleeve, so we shout new sensations like…






We cop out to sensationalism, but we can’t even do it right. I use this notion when creating names for poems. Names like…

Skinny Dipping with Strangers

Sexting While Driving

Anything to render a reader’s attention, or that of a listener. We use flashiness, though, to hide that there may not be real stories. We ignore the real to highlight the trivial. Like… the innovation of new ketchup packages…

Shopping habits of frugal buyers.

Listen, if you want to me to listen, give me a serial killer, give me a historical building being blown apart, give me a mob war… surely the most interesting news we have to offer isn’t that Ashton Kutcher is now part of Two and a Half Men.



About Derek Berry

Derek Berry is a novelist and spoken word poet. Derek is the author of Heathens and Liars of Lickskillet County (PRA Publishing, 2016). He co-founded and organizes The Unspoken Word, a literary non-profit based out of Charleston, SC, which provides an intendent home for the poetic arts through regular readings, workshops, and community fundraisers. He is on the Executive Board of the Charleston Poetry Festival, the inaugural production of which will be Fall 2017. His work has appeared in The Southern Tablet, Cattywampus, Charleston Currents, Illuminations, RiverSedge, and other journals.He has performed in venues across the United States and Germany. He has worked as a photographer’s assistant, busboy, and bookseller. He currently works at a curation facility for Cold War History.

Posted on September 20, 2011, in Blogging, Controversy, News, Politics, Stress, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. There much truth in your words // such being the case
    in spiritual development. In true spiritual development
    one need via meditation in turning the senses inwards
    thus one abled in having practical spiritual experience
    not of ideas / not beliefs / not of an fictional heaven or
    a fictional paradise that somewhere beyond the clouds
    but very practical spiritual experience that gives clarity
    to ones undrstanding / that answers all ones questions.

    Should any wish put such to test in its true experience
    on PC search put ( words of peace ) on site a an large
    selection of videos in which Prem Rawat talks explains
    of meditation / bringing a unfolding of the spiritual self.

    It should be added that nought is being given / rather it
    a unfolding of that which having / yet one long forgotten.

    Prem Rawat but a spiritual guide whom dedicated his life
    unto bringing peace unto the world via the enlightenment
    of the individual ( there’s be no money involved ) one can
    be assured its not a money making scam as with religions
    whom on the promise of a fictional heaven // many having
    yearly turnovers of $millions / in frauding many vunerable
    souls / the victims of centuries of / religious brainwashing.

    Unto many that in believing / the believeable must be alien
    they want the complicated . that there’s a HELL a HEAVEN
    that they are sinners whom’s only future is suffering / pain.

    Such not so / in one knowing creation / knowing true self
    then via meditation look within. It a spark of creation thats
    the true self / the human form is designed that one abled
    understanding / experiencing that of the ultimate of one’s
    true self / when in meditation turning ones senses inward.

  2. I happen to think that Secrets to Winning Scrabble is pretty important. But you’re right. Sensationalism sells. It always has. And I’m pretty sure it always will. I’m always pretty sure that some sociologist thinks s/he know why and has written a book on it.

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