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The Journey Begins

by Emily Williams

July 8,2009

“Call me Ishmael…”

“It is a truth universally acknowledged…”

“There was no possibility of taking a walk that day…”

“This is a story about something that happened long ago when your Grandfather was a child…”

These are the familiar beginnings of great literature. They are the opening sentences, that resound in our ears like fanfares, to the journey we know we are about to embark on through the worlds that are created for us by its authors. Most importantly, they set the trap of our interest for what happens next, what will bear fruit from these first few lines. It’s the clever tool every good writer knows: how to conjure the attention of your audience from the start.

I use this example by default, because as you will get to know me from here on out, my book-drenched background will be pretty obvious. For me, as the new Editor of Charlotte ViewPoint, there is certainly an element of anticipation and excitement as I take over this role and take the first step. While CV has been going strong for nearly 6 years, the journey is taking a new turn, as we grow in new ways we never thought possible.

I feel wonderfully fortunate to be writing this first column. In a way, these are my own opening lines to a great story that I hope continues well into the future. So for those of you who don’t know me too well yet, let me introduce myself.

Originally from the West Coast, I have lived in North Carolina for nearly 18 years, and I have seen how much Charlotte has grown since then. I grew up immersed in our local Arts scene, attending the Charlotte Symphony (still a loyal patron) and Opera Carolina, getting involved at the Mint Museums and even working there for a time. I graduated from Belmont Abbey College with a degree in English and a passion for journalism and history. I am, in short, an academic and cultural enthusiast, dedicated to writing, literature and the fine arts.

I first came onto the Charlotte ViewPoint scene in January, contributing reviews of dance and theater performances and interviewing musicians, directors and others for articles in our Arts section. While this is my forte, and is an area of CV that I would love to expand and polish, I believe there is great potential for growth in other areas as well. I would ultimately like to see CV become an ideal online companion to the city of Charlotte, through great writing, contributions to an ongoing conversation of ideas, and reviews of what’s going on in and around the region…and that’s just the beginning. There are many different avenues to reach that target and there are a few I would like to share with you.

Reaching out to universities and colleges within Charlotte is one of my personal goals for CV, as I believe tapping into the creative energies and intellects of students and faculty can produce a variety of exciting contributions. Our recent collaboration with Queen University’s MFA Program in Creative Writing is a prime example of this and I hope that we will continue to strengthen such ties into the future. As CV is principally an online media source, we will be enhancing our presence on social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter to further build community online. I hope that you will also see our sponsorship develop, advertising about us flourish and our presence on the Charlotte media scene become more apparent than ever. There are many ideas and projects underway and I’ll be excited to share those with our readers as the year progresses!

Most importantly, I think we can all agree on our common goal: to bring the vibe of Charlotte to our readers through multi-media and supporting our community where we can. Obviously, we have to acknowledge that there are a few challenges ahead. We can’t control the economy. I recognize that these are difficult times for Charlotte, the state and the country. In spite of this, it is my hope that we can keep the music, dance, art and theater of our city alive and kicking! I look forward to making that dream a reality.

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