Another very exciting announcement from our side today: we have a new team member here at the 'Mine!! Mike Hoskins, who many of you know already as a beacon of the diabetes online community, and a recent freelancer here, has just signed on as our new Managing Editor!
Like me, Mike has a background in journalism and is passionate about patient advocacy. He's spent the last 6 years as a lead reporter at Indiana Lawyer/IBJ Media Corp., all the while writing about diabetes on the side. Now he gets a chance — like Allison and I — to turn this passion into his day job. Woohoo! We're so glad to have him, and I'm so proud to oversee the growth of this site!
Our goal here is to keep bringing you, on a daily basis, enlightening and entertaining content that you all care about in your lives with diabetes. We like to call the 'Mine "a diabetes newspaper with a personal twist." Got any suggestions for us? We've now got a TEAM to respond ... three and a half of us! (Wil, our beloved Q&A Columnist and Correspondent being the half ;) )
And now a word from Mike himself:
Yes, my name is Mike, and I'm an insulin addict. Have been since age 5, back in March 1984, just a handful of months before starting kindergarten. With my mom being a type 1 herself since the same young age, my parents quickly caught on to all my classic symptoms — and the rest is history. While my mom saw the diabetes evolution from the "dark ages," I came on the D-scene in what was the dawning of a new age with the advent of home blood meters and just before everyone began relying on the Hemoglobin A1c test. Took two (or more) shots for the first 17 years before turning to an insulin pump during my final year of college in 2001.
While I never thought diabetes would impact my career direction, it's been amazing in the past several years what changes have come my way as a result of my diabetes. Just as long as I've been living with type 1, I've been writing. First, it was short, kid-styled stories modeled after superhero comics, then longer short stories, poetry and prose. Eventually, that evolved into journalism after my mom convinced me I probably needed to do something to "pay the bills" while I penned my novel. So I turned to newspapering.
And I've been a newspaper guy ever since, working at a variety of small and larger newspapers that have taken me from the Detroit area to Indianapolis. Local news, government and schools, environmental and human interest, to legal news where I've covered the courts and legal world.
Then, the diabetes online community came onto my radar and life took a new direction. And NOW, the diabetes beat is where my attention turns full-time. (Dude, I get chills just thinking about that — because it's so darn exciting for me!!)
As Amy mentioned, this isn't new to me — aside from managing my own pancreatically-challenged life and riding the glu-coaster each day, I've been sharing my own D-stories for a number of years in my off-hours, and have loved every second of it. Since then, I've loved getting back into the advocacy swing that I'd fallen away from during my teen and college years. From creating a local network of Adult D-Meetups in the Indianapolis area to becoming a part of a fascinating local diabetes camp organization, I've enjoyed being able to help connect dots and just meet new people and share our stories.
I've been reading the 'Mine since almost the beginning, in those "early" days of the DOC — and with our mutual passion for journalism I've held a respect for the straight talk and news writing that's turned this blog into what it is today. I couldn't be more excited and honored to become a part of this team, and do what I can to reach out to the broader community on such a platform.
*waves to our parent company Alliance Health, too!
This community of people has been an incredible, life-changing network of support that I never even knew I needed until finding it, and it's allowed me to merge my journalism and diabetes writing worlds to do more good. Not only for the broader community in the name of advocacy and awareness, but for me personally. Being engaged online helps keep me stay accountable in my own health, and over time that activity — those friendships and relationships — has helped me become a better, healthier person.
I would love to hear your thoughts on the 'Mine: what you'd like to see and how we can help you better, so please don't hesitate to contact us. My new email is firstname.lastname@example.org, so please drop me a line there, or at my other new homes on the DiabetesMine Twitter and Facebook feeds, or whatever platform works best!
So glad we're on this ride together, and I can't wait to work with every single one of you to see what we can accomplish together for the betterment of the broader diabetes and health communities!