Shannon's Soapbox

Most of you already know who I am. My name is Shannon Taylor and, as of this week, I have taken a new position as Associate Editor of the Dresden Enterprise.

I have been in the news industry for almost three years now, but I have been writing in one capacity or another for as long as I can remember. I wrote a story in first grade called “The Tallahassee Kidnapping,” which won first place in a fiction-story contest, and I haven’t stopped writing since.

I was previously with another news outlet as an Investigative Reporter where I won two Tennessee Press Association awards--one for Best News Reporting and one for Investigative Reporting -- before taking a position with Magic Valley Publishing as their Regional Investigative Reporter. When Sabrina Bates, Regional Editor of the company, asked if I wanted the Associate Editor position with the Enterprise, I agreed right away. Dresden is my home and means a lot to me, as does the rest of Weakley County, and I am looking forward to the opportunity of serving the county better in this new position. Don’t worry folks — I’ll still be doing investigative reporting as it’s my passion — this new role just keeps me closer to home and better able to serve the citizens of this county.

I moved here from South Elgin, Ill., when I was in high school and after graduating from Dresden High School, I joined the United States Marine Corps. I have three children — a son who lives in Ohio and two daughters that live with my boyfriend and I in Dresden.

I graduated from the University of Tennessee in Martin with a BA in English, and, during that time, I was able to attend many conferences and publish a lot of my writing. I graduated Magna Cum Laude and was a part of numerous clubs and organizations during my time there, including Sigma Tau Delta-an English Honor Society, Psi Chi-a Psychology Honor Society, Gamma Beta Phi-a National Honor Society and Phi Kappa Phi-a National Honor Society.

Upon graduation, I was accepted into the accelerated Masters/Doctorates program in English Literature and Pedagogy at Murray State, where I completed my master’s, and I am currently working on finishing my Doctorates as well as obtaining a master’s in journalism. While there, I was accepted into Omicron Delta Kappa, a National Leadership Society for obtaining a 4.0 GPA in a master’s program and leadership in the community. I love learning and that has been my number one reason for continuing my education.

When I’m not working or in school, I am an avid reader and I typically read more than 25 books a year at a minimum. My favorite author is Stephen King who writes my favorite series of all time—The Dark Tower. I love all things horror and fantasy, to write fiction and poetry, play video games, knit and travel as well.

During my time as an investigative reporter for this county I have established a dialogue with many members of this community, and I plan on continuing that as Associate Editor. My door will always be open to those wanting something looked into, a feature article on someone in the community, an event happening or just questions that you need answers to. You, the community, have always been and will always be, my number-one priority.

To end with a quote that is my mantra by Stephen King, “If you expect to succeed as a writer, rudeness should be the second-to-least of your concerns. The least of all should be polite society and what it expects. If you intend to write as truthfully as you can, your days as a member of polite society are numbered, anyway.”

Rudeness in King’s context, I believe, is not sugarcoating things to please society, and I have never, nor will I ever, succumb to that style of writing. I write truthfully — whether that ruffles feathers or not — and I intend to keep on doing just that.