Michael Bodine

Writer/Journalist

Location icon United States

Hybrid problem solver/storyteller with unique eye and poetic diction

Veteran newspaper reporter and investigative journalist/dinosaur, published poet and photographer. My passion for creativity, nature and words is second only to sharing what I love with the world.
Officially a "small town" reporter, I have rarely been assigned a beat and have covered everything from photographing the Mule Days Parade, to jailhouse interviews and fact-checking the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.
Publishers repeatedly assign me to write obituaries, profiles, human interest pieces or set me loose on "bulldog" assignments i.e., investigations, impersonations, covert interviews and records collection. Both kinds of assignments are an invasion of personal space that require patience and maturity to investigate and detail with respect and objectivity. The details are going to be as different as people are, but everyone has a space within them that cannot be entered without coercion and so, can relate; to the intrusion and the story.
I have a track record for finding and covering news and stories that the competition does not and am a magnet for odd characters... birds of a feather and all. The quirkiness of people and witnessing what their creativity can accomplish gets me out of bed in the morning. We are regularly pulling things out of thin air that go on to revolutionize an industry, an office or mankind. Luckily, imagination is not limited to artsy types, and criminals and liars create masterpieces as well.
I am patient, sensitive and empathetic - rules hard forged from being the newsman in small towns where credibility can hang on how you treated someone 20 years ago.
I believe in showing face, whether it's attending a meeting after publishing a damning story on those in attendance or the face-to-face interview, as body language and detail are the key to a successful profile; like the butcher who wielded a 12-inch stick of pepperoni like a conductor's wand during an interview or the eerie quiet made by hundreds of wildland firefighters getting chow at a camp beneath smoke filled skies. I can “call it like I see it,” go gonzo, tastefully sensationalize, highlight the absurd, make jokes, transcribe or write it straight. I have earned the trust of publishers to be autonomous with content and angles.
I am also a published poet and instructor for the California Poets in the Schools, teaching the craft to students.
My career as a journalist has paralleled the rise of the Internet, and I have learned to operate analog and digital tools; from cold-calling and chasing ambulances, to teasing stories on social media, computer hacking and fake news.
As a researcher for Project Censored at Sonoma State University, I learned how to follow a paper trail and witnessed the direct influence of advertisers on editorial content. Project Censored is an annual publication that details and ranks major news stories that have been buried and attempts to expose the subjects further. Churning out books and curious minds since 1976, Project Censored was once considered the Pulitzer Prize of alternative media.
I landed my first newspaper gig because I could write, finally being hired at the local rag, the only writing gig in town, after two communication majors hired ahead of me couldn't produce. Being a poet makes the writing colorful and being curious has made the reporting part easy.
As a freelance writer for the past five years, primarily for The Sheet News in Mammoth Lakes, I was given reign and direction to conduct deeper, long-range investigations. I was never scooped at The Sheet, and the other three local outlets were usually unaware of my stories until we published.
I have taught poetry, wrote for a semi-independent college paper post-Hazelwood decision, was “staffulty” or half-faculty, half-staff member at the ultra-exclusive Deep Springs College and produced news and a jazz show for Sonoma State radio, KSUN.
Nature called to me as a child and I developed a strong relationship with, and appreciation for, the outside world. I have contacts on the ecological and environmental activism and conservation front lines and backcountry.
Music is my special friend and have extensive knowledge of early hard rock/heavy metal, jazz, (bop, post, Downtown), world and electronic music.
I'm genuine and sincere, and incredibly creative.

Portfolio
Thesheetnews
11/27/2015
Get the led out

Former Mono County Administrator (CAO) Jim Leddy allegedly looked down a county employee's blouse, tried to guess her bra size, asked her if she wanted to take a bath with him, invited her to a threesome, and wanted to make a check out to her "for sex."

Thesheetnews
02/09/2018
Stipendintendent

MCOE officials receiving stipends okay, says DA The Sheet was recently approached by several local citizens concerned that Mono County Office of Education Superintendent Stacey Adler was turning their tax dollars into bonuses for administrators. Administrators have received $93,530 in stipends since 2012. A group came

Thesheetnews
06/10/2016
The pie that ate the Sky

Pie in the Sky calls it quits after nearly four decades, but the resort, cabins, store, boats, grill and scenery remain. There is no more Pie in the Sky. The Rock Creek Lakes Resort is still open, it has the grill, cabins, store, and boats for rent like always, there's just no more pie.

The Sheet News
May 21, 2016 Vol. 14, No. 21
Pants on Fire

The Sheet, May 21, 2016 Vol. 14, No. 21 Pants on Fire Did Fesko drink the RCRC Cola? By Bodine It appears Mono County Supervisor Tim Fesko did not tell the truth about his knowledge of a piece of draft legislation that would have committed the county to an expensive project. At the February 16 Mono County Board of Supervisors meeting, he said if he had known about the Adventure Trails legislation earlier than the beginning of February, he would have brought it to the attention of the...

Thesheetnews
03/04/2016
"Who named it the arsenic pond?"

No one knows why Crystal Geyser Roxanne didn't get a permit to dispose of arsenic into an un-lined pond, or why no one caught the arsenic seeping out of the pond and into the soil and groundwater, or what exactly is going to be done about it.

Ridgecrest Daily Independent
Lone gunman terrorizes east Ridgecrest

After a four-hour standoff, David Park is apprehended by the Kern County SWAT team from his trailer at the Desert Empire Fairgrounds RV park. A male had barricaded himself inside a trailer at the Desert Empire Fairgrounds RV Park on Thursday morning. The suspect was identified by the Ridgecrest Police Department as David Park, owner of ProShop Nutrition.

Eastern Sierra
Eastern Sierra

Eastern Sierra adventures, food & drink, tips from locals, hotels, camping, things to do, sightseeing, plan your trip to California's Eastern Sierra