The news that Patrick Effeney is stepping away from The Roar as editor at the end of this week was very sad news for me indeed, though obviously exciting for him as he looks to bigger and grander pastures.
Bloody Paddy, what is that hipster playing at?
I have been a Roar reader for some time now, probably first attracted to the site on a regular basis since 2010, particularly the rugby section, taking in the various opinions of not only the expert columnists but the regular fans opinions as well and enjoyed scrolling through the various threads of discussion.
I took a year or so to build up the courage to start commenting myself and then a bit longer to actually set up my own profile and start contributing my own thoughts.
You see, I am not a particularly smart fellow and frankly, my writing ability was poor (that’s how I felt anyhow) and it was becoming increasingly pertinent that this skillset of mine needed vast improvement considering where my line of work was taking me.
Not being much of a ‘school’ type, it was my better half who suggested that I start contributing to the website.
“You love talking about the game,” she had commented. “Why not just do that while writing it down? It would be good practice.”
That made sense, so finally I did and that was when I had my first contact with Paddy.
It wasn’t great, to be fair. He emailed me to tell me that two pieces I had submitted basically sucked and outlined what I needed to do better, though obviously he told me politely.
Since then, Paddy has been a constant help in my contributions, providing tips and various resources, along with encouragement which was greatly appreciated, even asking me to give live blogging a go, which I love doing.
The improvements in my writing that I have gained from his support (and patience I might add) have had a remarkable impact on my outlook, including my career and just the confidence it has provided has me viewing and considering new options which I did not previously believe possible, and it all came about from having a crack at something which, frankly, scared me, but at least it was about the sport I loved and I am eternally grateful to Paddy (and The Roar of course) for the opportunities and belief it has created for and in me.
Having had the privilege of meeting Paddy a few times, his energy and passion for sport and The Roar was palpable and drew me to the site even more. During the last few years, the available digital content on the site has risen drastically, the introduction of the Roar Live segment a recent example of that, and I have no doubt Paddy was a key influence behind these initiatives.
For me, The Roar is my favourite rugby website and I would recommend it to anyone who shared a passion for the game and I have no doubt the site will continue to go from strength to strength. But it is with a tinge of sadness that Paddy won’t be behind the scenes anymore – not to mention I won’t be able to kick his rear again in the tipping panel!
The point of this ramble was basically to say ‘thank you’ Paddy for the help and support you have provided me personally and the hard work you have put into a site that I have been able to enjoy more and more over the years. You will be missed, although your choice of beer, not so much.
And of course, congratulations on your new role, I have no doubt you will kill it!