Ryker Jackson



My story idea came after mulling over quite a few of them. I knew that the opioid crisis was a heavily discussed one, but I wanted to take a more in-depth look at recovery options and what works.

I did quite a bit of research online, but I also had the benefit of knowing personally multiple sources who were involved in the recovery of those suffering from addiction. These people had first-hand experience and were very beneficial to the story.

While finishing the article, I came across a dilemma in which one of my sources contacted me and explained that he would rather not be named in the story. This was easily solved by using an abbreviation, but it was a strong reminder to me of the seriousness of the issue at hand.

I had quite a bit of information for a while, because I knew that I wanted to get the article right. I did not want to rush through anything and leave out an important detail, or portray opioid addiction and recovery as anything other than what it is. Ultimately, it fell upon the importance of helping people understand recovery, and that became the focal point from where my article grew.

I was surprised at how personal this article became to me. I began looking at it from an outsider’s perspective. I had never dealt with this issue before, but I could sense and understand the pains and joys experienced by those I interviewed. I can say in all honesty that this was the most difficult article I have written, but also by far the most rewarding.


I’ve been writing for a long time — as long as I can remember, actually. I’ve been writing stories and books, or at least attempting to do so, my entire life. I was born in Salt Lake City and I have spent my life here. I served as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for two years in Los Angeles County, and am now studying communication at the University of Utah. News writing is incredibly important — it brings stories to light and informs people of what they need to know. This is my responsibility, and I take it very seriously.