I always enjoyed writing, but never considered myself a writer. This was a trend that followed me throughout both elementary and middle school, coincidentally overlapping with a newfound passion for music. I have always followed my brother’s footsteps, from the Christmas he burned me his entire Weezer collection, to the day I bought my first real CD (Yellowcard’s Ocean Avenue).
Now, I don’t know if everything happens for a reason. I like to think it does. But, it’s a notion that can be difficult to always believe in. However trivial, these two interests merged the night I wrote my first album review.
The website’s name is Absolutepunk.net, and to this day I still visit it as both a Contributor and as a place to gather all my music-related news. I had no idea what I was doing, but I knew I loved reading reviews enough to want to start writing them, and I picked up on enough key phrases (the term “slow-burner” comes to mind) to try it.
I chose a record I felt passionate about: The Season, from youthful indie-rockers All Get Out. From there, it was as if I had toppled the first domino. A woman from the site e-mailed me wondering if I would be interested in contributing to Absolutepunk, and I have now been doing so for the past year and a half in hopes that I may soon become part of the staff.
That goal has recently switched to second priority though, as late this past summer I decided that I wanted to start my own blog to review larger new releases, and post original content such as lists, retrospectives and specialty features.
My Tumblr became known as “Fastest Kid in School,” and after several nights of non-stop coverage (I specifically remember being proud of my write-up on Jimmy Eat World’s Damage), my knowledge of the internet began to grow. I spoke with friends and fellow writers to put together an experienced, tasteful and trustworthy staff.
What was our motto? “Tag everything.” We were new; it’s what we did best, and while some may call it trial and error, it certainly got us somewhere.
Fast forward to the past couple of months, and I premiered a song from emo up-and-comers Late Night Beers, conducted an interview with Reggie and the Full Effect and The Get Up Kids’ James Dewees, and began receiving advances on material from both Topshelf and Rise Records.
The next step was to transition from a blog into an official website, so I spent roughly a week and a half securing the domain name (fastestkidinschool.com) and finding the right hosting site for us (Dreamhost). After a fairly simple template via WordPress, and several growing pains while attempting to make the website look more credible, we finally settled on the interface we now have, and began to focus less on improving our web design skills and more on supplying our readers with daily content.
We now link streams and album announcements to our site, as well as continue covering new releases, interviewing some of our favorite musicians and writing original pieces to keep our users interested and involved in the discussion. (I’m currently ranking the Top 15 Essential Modest Mouse songs in lieu of a new record.)
Obviously, I don’t have to explain that I now find myself amongst the wonderful staff at Gannon’s Edge magazine, but I guess what I’m saying (aside from shamelessly self-promoting myself) is how the dust always seems to find a way of settling.
Whether or not everything happens for a reason may still be a mystery, but I know that I would be unhappy had I stayed a Psychology major (simply wasn’t for me), or continued listening to bands like Linkin Park and 3 Doors Down after the seventh grade. It all goes somewhere; that I never had a doubt about. I’m feeling more and more confident every day I spend writing here at Gannon, and I will continue to make progress with Fastest Kid in School for as long as I possibly can. Until then, feel free to stop by the site and join in on the discussion. “Your favorite artists- we do all the rest.”