Disclaimer: Stuff posted on CodyCutter.net do not reflect the views of Sauk Valley Media, Shaw Media or its publications.
Welcome to CodyCutter.net!
My name is Cody Cutter of Sterling/Rock Falls – a part of “downstate” Illinois north and west of the southern limits of the Chicago metro area. I am a news and sports journalist, retired gas station cashier, local historian, 2005 Sterling High School graduate, 2010 Sauk Valley Community College graduate, Asperger’s Syndrome (Autism) warrior, big brother, little brother, single guy, human GPS system, and novice tourist.
Since my sophomore year of high school, I wanted to be a journalist. I’m still doing that. That’s been almost 20 years. I had been clerking at gas stations for 11. So I don’t like switching and switching. I’ve got a roof over my head, a car that runs, a family close to me, some money in the bank, and a sense of reality. About the only thing missing is that woman of my dreams, but that’s a long story.
However, such is the reason why I have a blog such as this. I’ve had blogs off and on for about 15 years, starting with the old “#35’s Waste of Space” (2005-2013), and a couple of small, failed, sports ones. Professionally, I am a news and sports journalist. Sports was my main forte for most of these years, but I have branched into doing more news stories and personality features.
In past occasions when I’ve been prompted to write about “About Me” essay, they’ve always been easy because I haven’t had much accomplished. However, this go-around is tough because of all of the things I’ve experienced.
I’m hopeful that the stories I post on CodyCutter.net will give you a little info about myself, my past, my present, and my future.
Fall 2002: Began as a content provider for the Sterling H.S. football and volleyball teams at Prep Sports Online, the parent company of the former SterlingGoldenWarriors.com. Later expanded to work with websites for Dixon, Newman and Rock Falls high schools. Duties includes photography, video taking, and writing small write-ups on sports events.
April 2004: Began first stint at Sauk Valley Media, publisher of the Daily Gazette and Dixon Telegraph. Covered a 20-inning state semifinal softball game with Rock Falls in June. Left SVM in August.
September 2004: Started Northern Illinois Sports Beat (NISB, for short), a website I would run for about 10 years. Tuned as a successor website to the former NCI Preps, NISB had game stories, features, message boards, and some photo-video. Many different website and message board platforms came and went. Had a coverage area of basically about 75-90 miles with Sterling as the center. If it was a state final team in that area, I likely covered it in the state finals.
2010: I had help in running NISB. Had a staff of three writers until 2013.
December 31, 2013: After an aborted attempt to start a Sterling-Rock Falls based prep sports website, I ceased the content portion of NISB and began an 8-month “sabbatical” from routine journalism. On Week 1 of the 2014 football season, I was at a bar listening to local bands play country music – to give you an idea of the life I was living throughout much of 2014. The message boards continued to operate.
Spring, summer 2014: Wrote occasional articles for the monthly shopper Sauk Valley Sun.
August 25, 2014: Left the Sun and started my second and current stint at Sauk Valley Media as a part-time sports writer.
October 2017: Promoted to full-time status – Divided time between sports and newsroom desk duties (writing news briefs, obituaries, photo pages). Started running the Carroll County Prairie Advocate sports section, and did so for slightly less than a year. Wrote business profiles for the company’s various “Living” magazines.
January 2019: Became SVM’s education and small business reporter; also write feature stories and local history items. Also wrote my “Cutter’s Corner” sports column to remain active in prep sports journalism.
July 2020: Left the full-time newsroom gig and began new full-time role working in SVM’s magazine (“niche”) division. Currently, I am the lead writer for the local “Living” feature-based magazines, “Lake Lifestyle” magazine for the Lake Carroll community, and other special feature publications. I still write the occasional sports and news articles for the newspaper and online products.