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People You Should Know- Friends of the ISA


Mike Clifford
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Not very long ago I created a Q&A session and asked some of our local writers and outdoors personalities to provide some answers.

 

These folks are all friends of the ISA and have supported us in our endeavors many times.

Thought you might enjoy reading them........

 

 

HeartlandOutdoorsman.Com Q&A Interview with the Outdoor Writer for Chicago Sun-Times.

www.dalebowman.com

 

HO: How long have you been writing and/or reporting on the Great Outdoors? (How did you get started?)

 

DB: I have been the outdoors columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times for 10 years. I had done some magazine work before that.

 

 

HO: What is your favorite Outdoors Activity?

 

DB: Deer hunting, followed closely by river smallmouth fishing

 

HO: Your most treasured memory in your outdoors adventures?

 

DB: Probably shooting my first buck or my first grouse, which led to the sale of my first magazine story.

 

HO: The most spectacular scenery you have witnessed in America?

 

DB: On the Appalachian Trail in the Great Smokies or the Shenandoah National Park, or maybe the Cascades in Oregon.

 

HO: Any rituals before you head out to fish or hunt?

 

DB: No. I have just learned to pack lighter, and as much as possible the night before. The closest to a ritual for some activities is traveling there or back without the radio or CD on to let words rattle around my head.

 

HO: The best way to introduce our youth to the Great Outdoors?

 

DB: Don't know the full answer and am working on it.

The one component I am certain of is the best efforts start with taking care of your own, by that I mean taking your own kids and their friends or the neighbor kids hunting/fishing/hiking.

Second, we need to understand the world is much different than when we were growing up. Just like kids don't play pick-up baseball until dark any more, few do the strictly traditional hunting/fishing the old ways either.

 

HO: Best thing/person to happen to our environment and/or outdoors recreation in your lifetime?

 

DB: Chicago River rebirth or Northerly Island becoming a park

 

HO: Best book on the outdoors you have read?

 

DB: A River Runs Through It (nothing soft about this brutal look at the outdoors and family relations) or Faulkner's novella The Bear (again nothing soft about the outdoors and family relations)

 

HO: The most interesting person you've interviewed/researched for a story?

 

DB: Jerry Krause

 

HO: Advice you would give a would-be outdoors writer?

 

DB: Focus on writing, not on fishing. Focus on hearing, not on hunting. My single biggest complaint about the field is the writing. Guys do all kinds of things to learn the newest fishing spot or technique, but zero to improve how they present it.

And most of all, enjoy it fully and write the personal part of it as straight forward as possible. The best outdoor writing is always ultra-personal.

___________________________________________________

 

The Heartland Outdoorsman Q&A Interview With Steve Sarley.

 

"The Outdoors Experience" radio show airs live every Saturday morning on 560-AM WIND from 8 to 9 a.m. It has been called "Chicago's premier radio show." Recent guests have included Babe Winkelman, Jimmy Houston, Joe Bucher, Ron Lindner and Jay Yelas.

http://www.oexperience.com/

 

HO: How long have you been writing and/or reporting on the Great Outdoors? (How did you get started?)

 

SS: I started out writing for MidWest Outdoors mamgazine in 1997. I have written for the Press-Republican and Pioneer Press newspapers. I currently write an outdoors page for the Northwest Herald. I have hosted "The Great Outdoors on CLTV for 3 years. I have hosted "The Outdoors Experience" on Saturday mornings from 7 to 8 on WYLL AM-1160 for two years.

 

HO: What is your favorite Outdoors Activity?

 

SS: Without a doubt, it is fishing, preferably on open water on inland lakes.

 

HO: Your most treasured memory in your outdoors adventures?

 

SS: I lost a tremendous muskie on Eagle Lake while fishing with Spence Petros and Mike Zielonka. Steve Herbeck causht the fish a week later and said it was 56-1/2" and over 50#. I lost it right at the side of the boat after a long fight. What I remeber most is the cameraderie and the sense of loss that all of us in the boat felt, not just myself. It really proved to me how much fishing is more a shared experience than a solitary one.

 

HO: The most spectacular scenery you have witnesed in America?

 

SS: I could stand and watch Niagara Falls for hours on end. It is magnificent.

 

HO: Any rituals before you head out to fish or hunt?

 

SS: No, but I always wet the net when I get out in the boat. It's a superstition that I picked up from my dad.

 

HO: The best way to introduce our youth to the Great Outdoors?

 

SS: Take them fishing at a local pond with light line, small hooks, European style floats and let them catch a bunch of fish. They don't have to be large, it is the action that counts. I wholeheartedly endorse Scouting as a great way to get children to become involved in all aspects of the outdoors.

 

HO: Best thing/person to happen to our environment and/or outdoors recreation in your lifetime?

 

SS: The incredible comeback of the Great Lakes.

 

HO: Best book on the outdoors you have read?

 

SS: I loved "A Voice in Our Wilderness," the recent collection of columns of the late John Husar. He was the best of the outdoor writers and the book just made me realize how great he really was.

 

HO: The most interesting person you've interviewed/researched for a story?

 

SS: Ted Nugent - once I got him to slow down, he proved exceptionally genial and thought-provoking.

 

 

HO: Advice you would give a would-be outdoors writer?

 

SS: Eliminate any thoughts that you'll ever be able to quit your day job. This is a labor of love for nearly everyone that I know who gets involved in outdoor writing.

_______________________________________________________

 

The Heartland Outdoorsman interview with Radio and Newspaper legend Mike Norris.

 

Mike’s numerous magazine articles, photo credits and television appearances combined with his extensive tournament, radio and seminar experience make it easy to see that Mike Norris Outdoors is truly a multi-media operation.

http://www.mikenorrisoutdoors.com

 

 

1) How long have you been writing and/or reporting on the Great Outdoors? (How did you get started?)

 

I started my writing career in 1986 when I was a touring pro on the Professional Walleye Tour and was contacted by Copley Newspapers (Aurora Beacon and Elgin Courier Newspapers) to write an weekly outdoors column. My radio career started a year later following a guest appearance on a sports show on WFXW, Geneva, IL. which generally covered the professional sports scene as well as local sports. After the interview, the show's host commented on how the show went. I suggested the station should have an outdoors radio program, the sports director marched me into the general manager's office and two week's later I was on the air.

 

2) What is your favorite Outdoors Activity?

 

Catching huge smallmouth bass from clear water lakes like Geneva Lake.

 

3) Your most treasured memory in your outdoors adventures?

 

A fishing trip I took in 2003 to the Canadian province of Nunavent, near the Arctic Circle, were I fished a lake (DuBawnt) which had just been opened to fishing. The lake trout there were berserk. they had never seen a lure before and I could catch them on anything I had in my tackle box.

 

4) The most spectacular scenery you have witnessed in America?

 

The two-week trip I took through Alaska in 2004 was a good one. I spent hours viewing the spectacular scenery the state offers while traveling along the Alaskan Highway. But, the best may be when I visited the Grand Canyon. The colors just before sunset are beyond imagination.

 

5) Any rituals before you head out to fish or hunt?

 

I just try to make sure I eat protein based food before heading out. It helps me maintain energy through the day.

 

6) The best way to introduce our youth to the Great Outdoors?

 

Take a kid to a place where he/she can catch a lot of fish effortlessly. The May/June white bass run on the Illinois River is a good example. And don't keep the kid out too long.

 

7) Best thing/person to happen to our environment and/or outdoors recreation in your lifetime?

 

The Clean Water Act and Buck Perry. The Clean Water Act revitalized a number of lakes and rivers and Perry led the way for structure fishing.

 

8) Best book on the outdoors you have read?

 

Double-Whammy by Carl Hiaasen. It's a story about an private investigator who while investigating a death of a person stumbles onto the most scandalous bass fishing tournament ever.

 

9) The most interesting person you've interviewed/researched for a story?

 

Brigid O'Donoghue with the United Special Sportsmen's Alliance. Brigid has a burning passion for providing hunts and fishing trips to terminally-ill children.

 

10) Advice you would give a would-be outdoors writer?

 

Study the writing styles of the editors of various magazines and learn how to query the magazine on an idea you have.

 

_______________________________________________________________

 

The Heartland Outdoorsman Q&A Interview with George Little.

 

George Little is an outdoors writer for the Springfield (IL) Journal-Register.

 

HO: How long have you been writing and/or reporting on the Great Outdoors? (How did you get started?)

 

GL: I've been submitting articles for publication for about 15 years. I started writing for myself because there were events and people in my outdoor experience that I didn't want to forget, or to be forgotten. I have written for television and video production all my professional career, that was a great help in writing the way people speak.

 

HO: What is your favorite Outdoors Activity?

 

GL: I am currently down to four bird dogs. By far, my favorite outdoors activity is upland bird hunting. I am particularly fond of quail hunting and would choose that over any other outdoor pursuit. If I could do only one thing, it would be quail hunting.

 

HO: Your most treasured memory in your outdoors adventures?

 

GL: Narrowing that down to one is impossible for me. All my most treasured memories center around the people I've been lucky enough to take to the outdoors with. There is always one more adventure to be had. The people to share them with are irreplaceable.

 

HO: The most spectacular scenery you have witnessed in America?

 

GL: I have traveled coast to coast and border to border. Every part of the country has fantastic scenery. Wherever I am at the time, the most scenic part of every day is when the sun breaks the horizon in the morning.

 

HO: Any rituals before you head out to fish or hunt?

 

GL: I load up the night before. I check and recheck all equipment. That way I leave less hanging in the shed.

 

HO: The best way to introduce our youth to the Great Outdoors?

 

GL: There is no best way. The best way is the way that works out for the mentor and the young person. The worst way is to force it when the young person isn't ready, or has already had enough for the day. All we can do as mentors is present opportunities and encourage developing interests.

 

HO: Best thing/person to happen to our environment and/or outdoors recreation in your lifetime?

 

GL: Electronic dog collars ...

 

HO: Best book on the outdoors you have read?

 

GL: Outside Chance ... Thomas McGuane

 

HO: The most interesting person you've interviewed/researched for a story?

 

GL: Ray Eye

 

HO: Advice you would give a would-be outdoors writer?

 

GL: Find a style that suits your abilities. When you have run out of things to say, end your article. Keep in mind that something that's new to you isn't necessarily new. Be respectful of your readers, and grateful that they spending their time reading what you have written. Even if you eventually become one, don't write like an expert. Don't 'write down' to your readers. Find out who your readers are. Learn about their likes and dislikes. Write for the reader. Remember, for most outdoorsmen, reading is a leisure pursuit. You have to get their attention, and give them something worth reading, before they turn the page. You may be the greatest writer on the planet, but it won't matter if no one enjoys reading your work.

_________________________________________________________

 

John Kruse is not a local guy, but if you are familiar with his work, you'll enjoy this one as well.

 

The Heartland Outdoorsman Q&A Interview with John Kruse

 

John Kruse

Freelance Outdoors Writer

Wenatchee, WA

 

Published Credits Include:

 

 

Salmon-Trout Steelheader

Fur-Fish-Game Magazine

Washington-Oregon Game & Fish

Sportsman's Atlas Magazine

Fishing & Hunting News

Waterfowler.com Journal

Sportsmen's Series Magazine

Local Fisherman News

Fishing Facts Magazine

North American Sportsman

 

HO: How long have you been writing and/or reporting on the Great Outdoors? (How did you get started?)

 

JK: I've spent time outdoors since I was a young boy. However, I'm a relative newcomer to the professional world of outdoor writing. I've been writing articles for magazines and web sites since 2001. I've been contributing feature pieces to a weekly outdoors radio show for over two years now. I've also been the editor of Pacific Northwest Outdoors http://pacificnorthwestoutdoors.com for over two years.

 

HO: What is your favorite Outdoors Activity?

 

JK: It's not fair to pin me down to one! I love upland bird hunting, waterfowl hunting and trout fishing (esp. steelhead) in streams. But I also love fishing for everything from bass and walleye to bluegill too. Hiking and camping round out the outdoors activities.

 

HO: Your most treasured memory in your outdoors adventures?

 

JK: Time with my dad. Opening Days hunting ducks in Central Washington's Pothole Reservoir - Fishing for trout in the Chilcotin Wilderness of British Columbia - Pike and Walleye fishing in the Northwest Territories. All shared with my father - all great trips.

 

HO: The most spectacular scenery you have witnesed in America?

 

JK: The best scenery I've witnessed in America? Hard to say - but I love so many parts of the American West! The Rockies of Colorado are magificent -as are the Cascades of Central Oregon and Washington. The basalt and sage of Eastern Washington also has a special beauty to it I don't grow tired of.

 

HO: Any rituals before you head out to fish or hunt?

 

JK: Just a little prayer for safe travel - praise for the beauty of the place I'll be at - and thanks for being able to be outdoors.

 

HO: The best way to introduce our youth to the Great Outdoors?

 

JK: Take them out on a youth hunt or take them fishing for something easy and plentiful (panfish and opening day trout destinations are good bets). Leave your gun or rod at home and concentrate on showing that kid a great time!

 

HO: Best thing/person to happen to our environment and/or outdoors recreation in your lifetime?

 

JK: Good question. We spend so much time pining over what we are losing in the environment and the outdoors that we spend very little time thinking about what is good. I'll have to give this one some more thought.

 

HO: Best book on the outdoors you have read?

 

JK: The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway - Lots' of good stories that touch on trout fishing and bird hunting.

 

HO: The most interesting person you've interviewed/researched for a story?

 

JK: David Baxter - a man who has lived an incredible life on and around the sea. He now owns the Lieberhave Resort in Washington's San Juan Islands. His life makes one of the best stories I've ever heard - and unfortunately, I've been unable to find the market to sell his story to!

 

HO: Advice you would give a would-be outdoors writer?

 

JK: Research your markets before you query - ask questions of others who have been doing this for a bit. Be reliable, professional and persistent.

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John Kruse fires something off the top of his head that is really more profound than it seems at first glance, in my opinion.

We spend so much time pining over what we are losing in the environment and the outdoors that we spend very little time thinking about what is good.

Mirrors my view of conservation in general, as you can never say enough good things about the environment around us- but if it is always "gloom and doom", your audience will tire of it quickly and move on to greener pastures.

Some of us learned this the hard way- but there is much truth to it.

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