Footy Almanac rejection – a writing career in crisis

The beauty of the Footy Almanac is to encourage amateur writers.

Secretly, all writers hope to be recognised for their “heretofore” undiscovered literary genius, be plucked from obscurity and offered the managing editor role at the New York Times. Would happily settle for Sports Illustrated.

It’s much like being selected to play for Australia whilst playing grade cricket a la Peter Taylor. We all know they meant to pick Mark Taylor and mucked it up, but it serves to prove a point. It can happen.

So for an article to be published on the Footy Almanac website and then deleted within days without explanation, has effectively ruined that dream. Shattered. People are offered counselling for much less than that sort of humiliation. (PA: Must make a mental note to start a crowd funding campaign to finance such sessions).

The article under consideration being “Modern Sport is a Fantasy”, which was pulled after three days. Removed from the ether as though it never existed. It more properly never deserved to exist even on an amateur writers website.

Thought perhaps the article was considered inaccurate or in poor taste, so did a thorough review.

Suggesting sport exists for betting, internet games and fantasy sports is self evident, so couldn’t see how that would be disputed or cause controversy.

Sports science, concussion-related injuries and sporting fathers are fertile topics in sports conversations, so perhaps the content was just considered a bit bland or too obvious for the reader.

Then wondered whether the bevy of Queens Counsel on staff at the Footy Almanac were of the view it was potentially defamatory. But as had only made two references to Jack Watts and Dennis Armfield being “not being hard at the ball”, it couldn’t be that. Surely, truth is still a defence.

Had however commented on Terry Wallace. Now he is litigious. Rodney Grinter knows all about that. The citation being “Wallace v Grinter & Melbourne Football Club Inc (1990) VSC 8348”. Makes you reflect on how hard it must have been for Terry to have been forced to play along side Leigh Matthews, Dipper and Dermott Brereton throughout his career.

That thought however was fleeting. The penny dropped. .da mcdonell had been critical of the “cross-stitch” association. The recreation with no redeeming features. Like bocci, croquet and cheerleading, a pastime which ought to be banned as being unhealthy and subversive. The cross-stitch army are a powerful lobby group. Like the tobacco industry, pharmaceutical companies and property developers, they wield power and influence.

There is little doubt the editors of Footy Almanac have caved into the demands of the cross-stitchers and pulled the article. Whereas had thought the funding for the Almanac was memberships, book sales and alcohol fuelled events, now suspect this may not be so. Formally call on the Footy Almanac Board to disclose all donations from the “cross-stitch society” (or related entities).

.da mcdonell is onto something. Now on the lookout for a website for amateur “investigative reporters”. Forget sport. New York Times still in the frame, but would now happily settle for an editorial role with “”

It is perhaps fortunate that like others, da mcdonell had started writing first and subsequently motivated to study journalism. Currently self educating under the guidance of Tim Harrower. Not Kristi’s father, coach of the Bendigo Spirit in the WNBL. Tim Harrower is the author of “Inside Reporting”. Thoroughly recommend the book, if that does not breach any editorial protocol.

In today’s study session, Harrower comments that a budding journalist should never be dissuaded by negative comment and rejection. That must accept editors have different views, and it is possible that on occasions they may even be correct (arguably).

Whilst in years to come, fully expect a managing editor of the Almanac to publish a formal apology for the callous action, for now in the spirit of reconciliation, am prepared (through my people) to advise the Almanac – it is forgiven.

In proof that am undeterred by the snub, am working the potential Pulitzer Prize winning article – “Melbourne versus GWS – It may be first round but it’s season defining”.

Yours in indignation – da mcdonell.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Footy Almanac would like to confirm that it is not in the pocket of ‘big cross-stitch’ which is, nonetheless, a fine, upstanding hobby. Following a small website issue last week da mcdonnell’s missing Almanac piece has been restored to its former glory with the author’s assistance.

About da mcdonell

Established "dam Sports Crisis Managment" to salvage & reinvigorate flagging careers of elite athletes. In practice mentoring rather than coaching or managing in the traditional sense. In the Almanac, we focus on the AFL players of the "dam AFL sports team"

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