Enlightening Journalism Students With Words of Wisdom: Bobby Hawthorne’s Advice


Author Bobby Hawthorne knows what it takes to be a radical writer and how to make stories memorable. In The High Post Staff’s Google Meet, he joined to give advice to staff members on how they can become better writers and tell impactful stories. Bobby is the author of Radical Write, a book that the staff reads throughout the school year to learn tips and tricks in order to enhance their stories. 

Bobby grew up in Longview, Texas and he really took an interest in writing when he was in high school and joined his school’s newspaper staff because he thought it would be an easy elective. Turns out that he was more talented than he thought because he was noticed by a sports editor for one of the pieces that he wrote and started to work for a newspaper company. 

When it comes to writing, Hawthorne explained that he doesn’t like to stick to the rules and likes to think outside the box. “Whenever I ask questions, I don’t like to ask the usual who, what, where, when. I like to ask why, how, and what if,” Hawthorne said. He feels that these questions get people to open up about themselves more and tell more of their story.

Another thing that Bobby wants the staff to know is that it isn’t complicated to tell a good story and that it isn’t rocket science to make them memorable. “It’s just a process of getting up and contacting somebody and asking the questions, as long as you ask the right questions then you’ll be in good shape,” Hawthorne said. 

One of the most important aspects of being a writer to Bobby as he has also mentioned in “Radical Write” is to be a reporter when it comes time to interview someone. “If you don’t report, then you have nothing to write about,” Hawthorne said. He also explained how interviewing comes easy if you look for stories where they’re at. “Interviewing is mostly about courage and curiosity,” Hawthorne added.

Some more motivation that he had for The High Post staff included why they should even write in the first place. He interpreted that writing satisfies our souls and that when people write stories, they just need to trust their own voice. He also added then when people write, they need to write how they talk in person and it will all just flow and it’s how they will get good content. 

One of the final things that Bobby Hawthorne had to advise to the staff is have faith that a story is going to work out whenever you feel that it isn’t and just to look at what you have and make it work somehow. “You need to flesh out your notes, I like to transcribe my notes and put it in front of me so I can move it all around,” Hawthorne said. He also added how important it is to find a good reader to criticize your work and tell you the truth.

Bobby Hawthorne gave The High Post Staff some great tips to help them understand the impact that journalists have on the world. It also gave them insight on how their jobs as writers can enhance people’s lives by telling their story and making them feel heard by somebody. His ideas are something that the staff will continue to follow in the future  because of how effective they are on their own writing.