What do you do? Part 2

If you’re a regular on Auto123.com, you’ve likely read my name a few times and know what I do for this site. If not, read this blog and consider it an introduction. Pleased to meet you.

I’m not the sole in-house auto critic for Auto123.com. You may have read or already follow Miranda Lightstone. Although we both essentially do the same job, we both took very different paths to get here.

If you’re a budding auto journalist or would like to try your hand at what we do, here’s a brief breakdown of said path (according to me).

In my case, I was born with 20W50 in my veins (so typical of a car guy to say…). From day one, I was all about cars. I read and bought books (internet was but an idea when I purchased my first Guide de l’Auto in 1983), and to my mother’s great chagrin, there was no deviating from this obsession of mine.

As schooling progressed, I became more interested in the written word and by CEGEP (yes, I live in Quebec) and University shortly thereafter, I was collecting credits in any and all types of writing classes. Although I never made it to the end of my B.A. (stay in school kids!), I acquired a taste for scripting and knew only that I wanted to speak cars — write cars — nothing but cars.

In order to put my hand where my mouth was, I plunged headfirst into auto mechanics. I’d decided to talk the talk by walking the greasy yet challenging walk. After a 16-month intensive course, I was an apprentice Auto Tech, with some ASE training — and proud of it.

Through a series of acquaintances and friends, I worked my way up the ladder as a volunteer, a data entry guy, a news writer, and then as auto journalist. Passion, knowledge, patience.

Creative writing, working on my own cars (some show winners — no word of a lie) and fully immersing myself into the crafts of writing and getting grime under my fingernails all played a role in giving me what I believe to be a well-rounded, purpose-built background in order to do this job.

In the process, I worked for a television station for a number of years, participated in numerous radio interviews, and was also published in some newspapers.

As for Miranda, rumour has it that she was wrapped in the finest Connelly leather the second after she was born. This explains her propensity for expensive automobiles, me thinks…

Her interest in automobiles also stemmed from her past. Make sure you read her story, too.

Mathieu St-Pierre

Photo: S├ębastien D’Amour

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