By Christopher “Flood the Drummer®” Norris
10.20.15: Global – (Lifestyle): Those who know me best as a professional drummer remain surprised that I’ve sought a career in media and journalism, as they would have expected me to leverage my talent into an endorsement deal and a tour.
But those who know my personhood in totality, which is very few, aren’t surprised at all by my literary aspirations and achievements, because I penned my first short novel, ‘The Wrong Turn,’ while in middle school – though it was never published – and I have, since forever, been a fan of writing scripts, songs, and jokes.
At one point in my life, my love for cursive writing caused me to author my signature over and over again, practicing what it would be like to sign hundreds of thousands of autographs, which I thought would be part of the job description as a famous actor and musician, the career goals printed in my class of 2004 high school yearbook.
For me, writing is equally as therapeutic as drumming, and they both present opportunities to tell a story. But unlike stroking drumsticks to produce a beat, the art of writing allows me to expose injustice, while exploring and challenging ideas, opinions and social constructs in order to initiate conversations, convenings or social change.
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The majority of my writing as a child was for entertainment purposes: a story about a star basketball player turned drug dealer; a play about a poor family forced to eat beans and raisins everyday and songs, both of the religious and satirical nature.
But as a young adult, the majority of my writing is meant to inform and engage active citizens, though I reserve some time to still pen satire, for lovers of humor and irony, under the brand name TABOO!™
My writing has led me onto stages and platforms that my drumming couldn’t have, and it’s put me in the room with some of the biggest names in the world of entertainment, politics and business.
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For example, in 2012, I was the only journalist to cover a closed door meeting with Philadelphia Mayor, Mr. Michael A. Nutter, and the Ambassadors of several African countries during the Uganda North American Association Convention, where the former CEO of 3M gave the keynote speech.
In 2013, at the request of the Philadelphia program director at the James S. and John L. Knight Foundation, the nation’s largest journalism funder, I appeared on a media access panel with several award-winning news professionals, including Mr. Neil Budde, a founding editor of Wall Street Journal Online and Ms. Loraine Ballard Morril, the news and community affairs director at IHeartMedia, which, at the time, was known as Clear Channel Communications.
In 2014, as a result of what judges suggested was fearless journalism that tells the truth in the face of opposition and controversy, I was awarded the Lucien E. Blackwell Guiding Light in the Community Award at City Hall by Mr. Blackwell’s widow, Ms. Jannie Blackwell, a Philadelphia City Councilwoman.
I also that year interviewed numerous blockbuster names, including Mr. Marlon Wayans and Ms. Ava Duvernay, the award-winning director of ‘Selma.’
In 2015, my work with Techbook Online, my news and event company, was the reason given for me being named by Generocity.org as a #PhillyChanger; why I was a part of The Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists’ ‘Media Access Day’ at NBC10 studios; and how I obtained thirty minutes of live air every Friday night on 900am WURD for #TheWeekThatWas, a review of all my stories published in a 5-7 day period.
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In 2016, I expect my writing to continue to create a space in the world for me, and that, among many reasons, is why I write.
The written word, in addition to be more powerful than the sword, for me as been the great equalizer in society, allowing me to advance in the world despite rejecting most traditions of higher education that society so warmly embraces.
Writing is the key that unlocks worlds, opens thoughts and uncovers maladies.
Writing, in many cases, can help mitigate issues, and it’s that fact which is why my company’s mantra is ‘Together we can write an end to the world’s toughest problems.’
I write because I can and because it is who I am: a storyteller.
This post was submitted as a part of America’s 2015 National Day on Writing.
* Tune into 900amWURD or 900amWURD.com every Friday evening at 6:30pm to hear me relive #TheWeekThatWas*
Thanks for reading. Until next time, I’m Flood the Drummer® & I’m Drumming for JUSTICE!™
About Christopher “Flood the Drummer®” Norris
About Techbook Online Corporation®:
Source: TBO Inc®
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