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Readership of the Durham Skywriter continues to grow and I’m starting to get more questions about submitting information and scoring interviews. This month’s cover story will answer these questions, and in fact, I will go through the Durham Skywriter page by page, explaining various ways you can play a part/get involved. I’ll let the article run for the next couple of months for our new readers.



The cover story can be about anything of interest to local folks. The goal is to share useful information, find solutions, and to promote the positive. Past stories have covered local police/community relations, some of the lesser-known Durham County Library services and programs, and “El-cheapo handy hints” (a seasonal favorite).


I welcome all story ideas and will always take them into consideration. I look forward to learning new things, hearing about upcoming developments, and getting caught up in local history. Forward your story ideas to call 919-809-9682, or send a tweet to @durhamskywriter.


  • There’s no advertising on this page. 


The “Word” page contains news from local nonprofits and city / county / state government, including descriptions of new programs and opportunities for individuals and organizations. Upcoming classes/seminars given by the American Red Cross (on University Dr) and Durham Tech’s Small Business Center are listed every month.


If you represent a Durham-area nonprofit or a governmental agency/department, contact me with info that you’d like to see listed on the Word page. There’s no cost for listing your program or services.


  • This is a great place for nonprofit organizations and governmental entities to set themselves apart and gaining more attention by advertising. Contact me for rates. 


Young people get a behind-the-scenes look at the world of work. All kinds of workers from the public and private sectors and entrepreneurs are featured. When given permission, I also shoot a short video showing the interviewee at work.


  • There’s no advertising on this page, but it’s a smart way to showcase someone on your staff and make readers aware of your company. 


Positive ministories, latest social- media goings-on, most recent episode(s) of the City of Durham’s “City Hall This Week,” and links to “Read All About It” (book of the month) and “Now Hear This” (CD of the month). Send in your announcements, and let me know if you have recently published a book or released a CD (or digital album).


  • There’s no advertising on this page.  


Fun for kids—crafts, science, optical illusions, jokes, riddles, and games. If I use a riddle or joke you send in, you can win a prize! I welcome story ideas from organizations that cater to young people, including the Boy and Girl Scouts.


  • There’s no advertising on this page. 


This page contains articles describing opportunities and offering tips and information for students and the people (parents and educators) trying to help them reach their potential in school. Sometimes, I also list online college courses that are offered to lifelong learners free of charge. If you can help our young people with education-based programming or services, get in contact with me.


  • This is a great place to run an ad that calls attention to your youth- or education-based program or service.


This page has information designed to help promote good health, including news from the Durham County Department of Public Health and local agencies such as the Community Health Coalition. A big blue “Health events” button links to a page that lists support group and other health-related meetings. 


  • This is a great place to run an ad that calls attention to your health-based program or service.


The SeniorScope page has information for the 50+ crowd, plus news from the Durham Center for Senior Life, Durham Parks and Recreation’s Mature Adult department, and the Levin JCC (Jewish Community Center). 


  • This is a great place to run ad ad that appeals specifically to men and women ages 50 and older. 


This page is for people who love to work outdoors in the garden and those who also want to increase their curb appeal. I also try to encourage individuals and families wanting to try their hand at growing their own food by writing about area community gardens. Sarah P Duke Gardens workshops are also listed; some are free and some are not. I would love to hear from people/nonprofit reps who can provide tips for beginners and folks who are new to the area.


  • This is a great place to run a gardening or lawncare­-related ad.


On the Praise page, I list faith-based programming, meetings, and workshops; and also run announcements from local churches, temples, and mosques/masjids. Much of the information given encourages collaboration with like-minded people and nonprofits that want to tackle some of the social problems that challenge some of our neighborhoods. 


  • This is a great place to run an ad that features your house of worship or faith-­based programming. 


This is where you can find law-related information, plus all kinds of information on voting and local politics, activism, and home/community safety. Legal aid programs that are offered by North Carolina Central University and Duke University are promoted during the academic school year.


  • This is a great place to run an ad for legal services or programming, local activism, and online and physical safety.


Here’s where you can find information on local sports programs for children, teens, and adults. Much, but not all, of the programming that’s listed is from Durham Parks and Recreation. When readers click on the big green “Great Outdoors” button, they are shown free events offered at four local state parks: Eno River, Falls Lake, Jordan Lake, William B Umstead. Skywatching sessions held by the Morehead Planetarium and also NC State University and North Carolina Central University (during the school year) are also listed.


  • This is a great place to run a sports, fitness,­ or games­-related ad.


Get step-by-step instructions on how to do all sorts of things such as creating a resumé, wrapping your trees to stop bug infestations, starting a community watch program, and more. If you would like to share instructions that readers can use to improve their lives, I’d love to hear from you.    


  • There’s no advertising on this page. 


Let’s Go! is the calendar of events page—from festivals to gallery openings  to area workshops, community campfires, food truck rodeos, and much, much more. This is by far the longest and most-viewed page in the Durham Skywriter. 


  • I respond to my analytics by placing most ads on the Let’s Go! page (unless instructed otherwise). The Durham Skywriter gets thousands of views every week, and through I have enjoyed the loyalty of both my readers and my advertisers. Call for rates.

  • I’d like to point out something that might rub some of you the wrong way, but it must be said! Many members of the media have been getting their information about upcoming events from the Durham Convention & Visitors Bureau website. What was great about that situation was that no event was too small—most notable events in Durham were listed there, with locations, dates, contacts, etc. Individuals and groups could (and still can) enter the events themselves (please note that they have a new url: Here’s the problem: Because of the growing popularity of Facebook, people are choosing to skip DiscoverDurham and create Facebook event pages for their special events. Relying solely on Facebook is not a good idea. Their algorithms aren’t the best—it’s hard to explain the technicalities, but the reach people are having on Facebook is diminishing instead of increasing. I’m amazed that sometimes I don’t see an event until the day before or even the same day! That means that I’m scrambling to list an event at the last minute and also missing opportunities for interviews (on my daily show, “Bull City Notes” on Facebook or my weekly YouTube show, “TV Skywriter”). My suggestion is to create a Facebook event page AND list your event on DiscoverDurham. That way, you’ll be assured that more people will learn about your event and allow for more chances of getting media coverage/promotion. The same goes for online sites like Eventbrite—try to get into the habit of using ALL of the tools that are available to you.

Do you have any handy hints for the winter season? Share them with us!

Thanks for submitting!

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