When I was accepted to the University of Illinois in 1980, I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to do. I had wanted to gain my fame and fortune as an actor, as I had discovered in high school that I loved the performing arts. I was unable, however, to gain entrance into the university under that major, so I agreed to a Physical Education major just so I could attend that year.
During the course of the year, I let my family talk me out of pursuing an acting career. I let them convince me that eating was important and that it would be difficult for me to find work and hence afford food if I remained on the course to acting. Instead, I was talked into becoming a Geology/Math major as the oil companies were hiring many geologists at the time. I’d be looking for oil deposits for the big oil companies. Well, I did like rocks and it was interesting, but the heavy science load, my proclivity for procrastination and partying, and the fact that I had a tough time translating the knowledge I learned to a test format led to disaster that second year. I nearly dropped out of school after having to drop a couple of classes rather than fail them, but a school adviser pointed out that I did well in humanities and convinced me to change my major to Rhetoric with Geology and Math minors and complete my education. I did so and earned my BA in 1984.
I had a couple of options back in 1984. I had been accepted to the University of Wyoming to pursue a teaching degree. I had also been accepted to a law school. But I had a problem. I didn’t have the money and I had a new wife and baby to provide for. I decided instead to stay in Champaign and work menial jobs. After a year, we moved back north to the Chicago area where I found work in pizza delivery and went to night school at the DeVry Institute of Technology to obtain a Digital Electronics Technician Diploma. I completed the courses in 1987 and got a job in vending repairing PC boards and small electromechanical devices.
I stayed in this field for the next 22 years and happily lived my life and raised my family. I continued, however, to pursue a love of writing in the evenings. I also had many conversations with the people around me as to what was happening politically in this country.
In 2006, I stumbled across an online publication named American Chronicle. There was an advertisement on their site stating they were looking for writers. I decided to write down and submit my thoughts in the form of op/ed articles and submit them to their site. To my surprise, they were accepted, published and people were actually reading and responding to them. After a few months, people from other sites contacted me to ask if I would submit my writings to their sites. I began to get requests for interviews on radio programs and podcasts. People were actually taking my point of view seriously. I happily accepted all offers and tried to gain as much exposure as I could.
I did this for nearly three years for free. I was working a day job and so I wasn’t desperate for money. I also felt my work was important enough where I didn’t want to limit it to those who were willing to pay for it. I felt it would be nice to gain employment as a journalist, yet I didn’t want to be limited by my employment as to what I could and couldn’t write about. It never mattered as no mainstream media outlet would ever hire me because my opinion, which likely more closely reflects the opinion of the common man than the corporate media would like to admit, is a far cry from that of the power brokers who own the mainstream media. My education, history, editing and writing skills are of no matter to those people, they don’t want reality exposed. They want good propagandists who are willing to spin the news toward their viewpoint, sometimes to the point of absurdity.
In January, 2009, I was laid off work. I found myself with more time on my hands and tried to increase my writing output, but at the same time I needed money. I can’t live off of unemployment forever and frankly it won’t last forever. I find myself in need of income, and writing is my best skill. I decided to start szandorblestman.com so that people can support my work. I need the help of those who appreciate what I do. I will continue to submit my work to all those who have published it in the past. Indeed, I will continue to encourage anyone who wants to publish my work to do so. I simply hope that those who enjoy my work will support me on a voluntary basis. In addition to this site, I have a book that is supposed to come out soon and I will supply information when it becomes available, but I have learned that one can’t count on anything but one’s self in this life. Until the books come out and become the best sellers I know they will be, I have to eat and provide myself with the basic necessities of life. I hope this site will help me do that.