A Retirement to Celebrate

A friend of mine is retiring. This friend is a big reason I pursued writing. A few years ago, he and I chatted about my blog. I had only recently re-branded into The Faithful Geek and starting to define who I was as a blogger. There are several writers in our area and he told me that I was one of the few who could truly write. He added how any time he sees me post something, he pays attention. I recently divulged my evolution as a writer, but that story was incomplete. These words from my friend were the first that made me believe I could be a real writer, that I could have a career doing this thing I love.

Why was the encouragement he delivered so much more powerful than the others who told me I was a good writer? Because it was Dave.

Dave spent his life working in journalism. Writing has been his job for longer than I’ve been alive. He came to the Coeur d’Alene area twenty years ahead of me, and blogging is what brought the two of us together. Over a decade ago, the Spokesman-Review gave him the opportunity to translate his editorial duties from a print only column into an online platform. Through moderating a newspaper blog, Dave promoted other local bloggers, often using their stories to create new content for the SR. I was one of those bloggers.

He was paid to write. On his writing income, he was able to buy a house, raise his kids, put those kids through college, and enjoy a fulfilling life. So, when he told me I was one of the few, it was more than a compliment. He spoke with the authority of someone who knew what he was talking about. There was a legitimacy to what he said that helped me feel like something more than a random dad who blogs as a hobby. After my conversation with Dave, I felt like a writer. It was one of those defining moments in life.

Last summer, Dave and I had another conversation, one about something incredibly specific. He told me that my post about divorce was the best article he had ever read about the topic from an evangelical perspective. Once again, I was humbled by his perspective. Such a powerful compliment from an industry insider. That blog post was one of the most difficult things to write. I was scared to hit the publish button. And here was a man I respected, a trained and professional writer telling me how much he was impressed by my writing.

Which brings me to now. I am writing a book. Something I always wanted to do but lacked the confidence to actually do it. Without Dave’s encouraging words, I’m doubt I would be doing it. I might still be blogging, but I would probably still think of it as nothing more than a hobby. But writing a book? I don’t think I would be writing a book if Dave had never told me I was one of the few writers who could really write. His remarks about my piece on divorce is what convinced me I had more in me than a blog.

It's now time for him to retire. The footprint he has left on Coeur d’Alene and surrounding communities is immense. As he moves into his new adventure of retirement, there will be a vacuum left behind, an absence of his voice. But the impact he’s had on my life is a story only I can tell. This week, I want to congratulate him on a job well done. More than that, I want to thank him for his role in helping form who I’ve become.

Dave, your retirement has been earned and well deserved, may you enjoy it to its fullest.


  1. Beautiful, Nic. I look forward to your book! We will all miss Huckleberries, but if he inspired you to write and publish, then he has a legacy that will live on.

    1. I have a feeling his legacy is going to be a lot bigger than my story alone.