#FabulousFridayGuestBlogger Ned Hickson @NedHickson

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NOTE FROM MARCIA: Today’s guest blogger is humor columnist, Ned Hickson. I’m so happy to have Ned join us today, sharing a new venture of his: a series of videos based on his new book, due to be released in August. I’ll let Ned tell  you about this in his own words. But brace yourself. Ned’s one of the funniest writers out there. You could laugh hard enough to hurt something. I’m just sayin’…

Being a Writer Takes Mad Survivor Skills
By Ned Hickson

 Writing is hard. Continuing to write is even harder. Understanding why Kanye West needs money is harder still. But let’s stick with the writing thing. Without the proper tools it’s hard to be a “writing survivor.” And make no mistake, committing yourself to putting words into the world on a regular basis — whether it be poetry, short stories, a novel or blog — takes an act of survival. Each Friday over the last two years, I’ve shared some of the things I’ve learned in a weekly post called “Ned’s Nickel’s Worth on Writing.”

This August, I’ll be releasing those two year’s of writing tips, insights and inspiration in a book called Pearls of Writing Wisdom from 16 Shucking Years as a Columnist. In the meantime, I’ve been commissioned to make a series of 12 videos taken from chapters in the book.

I must warn you that it is extremely graphic in nature, with flagrant nudity and foul language. Fortunately, that all takes place off-camera so that I can project an image of wholesomeness and wisdom. But since I’m only seen from the waist up, I’ll tell you I filmed the entire series without pants on. As I discovered, this technique led to a much faster shooting schedule for everyone involved. Particularly the sound person, who spent most of their time at floor level.

In fact, the only delay we had in production was when an overzealous clacker person got a little too close for comfort. Literally.

What follows is the first video in the series: “How to Be a Writing Survivor.”

All joking aside, I consider myself extremely fortunate to write for a living. Having an opportunity to help other writers by sharing what I’ve learned is not only a joy — but a real privilege. Being a writer takes equal parts determination, validation and inspiration. I’ve written this book, and made each video, with those three things constantly in mind.

So in a way, I had each of you in mind as well.

I hope you’ll feel the same.

Keep tapping those keyboards…

— Ned


See Video Here: How To Be A Writing Survivor

Follow Ned’s Blog Here: Ned’s Blog: Humor at the Speed of Life


An excerpt from ‘Humor at the Speed of Life’ by Ned Hickson


I believe some introductions are in order. And by that, I mean the introduction in my book, which seems like a good place to start. Given that Humor at the Speed of Life is a collection of my newspaper columns, I felt the need to give readers a little background as a jumping off point. Hoping, of course, that they weren’t reading it while perched on the ledge of a building…



After 15 years as a humor columnist, it finally hit me. And by that I mean my editor’s stapler. She had been threatening to throw it since 2004, when I first discovered the secret candy drawer she had cleverly labeled: Extra Work for Reporters. For the past nine years she had been warning me, “If you don’t stay out of my candy drawer, I am going to set this thing for ‘stun’ and hurl it at you!”

As I sat there, blurry-eyed and rubbing the back of my head, I came to an important and potentially life-changing realization:

I really need to publish this book now, before she gets a new stapler.

Once my editor replenished her candy stash, there was a good chance another direct hit would result in serious brain damage, ending my career as a journalist and leaving me to write for daytime television. The truth is, readers have been asking me for years to compile a book of columns. As one reader from Gwynette, GA., wrote in, “If you ever come here for a book signing, you better have pastries or something.” Continue reading

Introducing Ned Hickson

I’m so happy to have my cyber-friend, Ned Hickson, joining us here on The Write Stuff. Ned is a funny, funny man, and an all-around nice guy. If you don’t follow Ned Hickson.com, you really should. He makes me, and a whole lot of other people, laugh every day! I decided to use Ned’s About Me page, entitled Let Me Explain Myself,  as his intro, because it’s far funnier than anything I would come up with.

Ned Hickson is an editor and humor columnist for the Siuslaw News,
a small Oregon newspaper where the motto is:
Your dependable source for local news. Twice weekly. Unless we lose count.

After graduating from high school in Florence, Ore. in 1984, Ned moved to Dallas,Texas, where he found groundbreaking work as a bus boy. He eventually made his way into the kitchen and was promoted to corporate chef for L&N Seafood Restaurant in 1987, traveling throughout the South, coordinating restaurant openings. In 1989 he was promoted to regional chef and moved to Atlanta, Ga., where he was in charge of overseeing kitchen operations for 15 L&N Seafood locations throughout the Southern region.

But what does any of this have to do with his WRITING credentials?!?

Nothing really, but aren’t you getting hungry?

During his years in the restaurant business, Ned continued to write, getting short stories published in dozens of small press magazines, and completing a mystery novel. In 1999, he was hired as sports editor and columnist for the Siuslaw News in Florence.


“Focused.” “Dedicated.” “Marginally Excitable.” — Just some of the words used
describe his journalistic style.

During his time at the News, he has been awarded “Best Local Column” from both the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. He took his self-syndicated column online to newspapers in 2002 and, by 2003, received his first measure of national success: A threatening letter from Velcro© for not using the “©” symbol when making fun of its product. That same year, he became a member of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. In 2013, his column became a syndicated feature with News Media Corporation.

He and his wife, Alicia, are the parents of four children. They live in a 112-year-old home, where Ned utilizes his home repair skills to make improvements, such as being able to flush the toilet by turning on the garbage disposal. He is also a volunteer firefighter, which could come in handy, depending on how well he wired his home.


“This should get that fuse box open…”

Ned Hickson is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. His first book, Humor at the Speed of Life, is available from Port Hole Publications, Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.


Buy Ned’s book here:

Humor at the Speed of Life: Amazon
Humor at the Speed of Life: Barnes & Noble
Humor at the Speed of Life: Port Hole Publications

Find Ned on Social Media here:

Ned’s Blog