Image by Wendy Stephens

My name is Mark Smeltzer and I’m thrilled to be part of the AccessLocal.Tv team. I’m pretty new to the city, but I look forward to experiencing it with my team and audience alike. I call Placerville, California my hometown, but I was actually born right here in  Sacramento, and have since lived in New York, Washington, and most recently Utah. Now I’m back and truly excited to be a Neighborhood Correspondent. In the short time I’ve lived here I can already tell that there are plenty of stories to keep me busy. I’m proud to call the City of Trees my home.


I enjoy fishing, mountain biking, tennis, following current events, and of course, writing. I’ve completed one year of college and would like to return soon to pursue a degree in either Journalism or Political Science. I’ve never liked soap operas or reality TV; it seems to me there’s already plenty going on in the real world that demands our attention. In fact, cable news gets me riled up in the same way as a NFL fan watching the playoffs.

Two subjects that are especially interesting to me are religion and politics, the two most headache-inducing topics for many people. However, they are so important when it comes to understanding current events that I try to approach them bluntly and objectively.

I take great pride in my writing, often recreating the same paragraph five different ways just to come up with the most reader-friendly passage. I also try to be original in my writing and enjoy coming up with memorable phrases, avoiding stock expressions “like the plague” as author William Safire would say. As an aspiring writer, I want to go to great lengths to find a personality in my writing and protect it. To keep things simple I remember what Christopher Hitchens, a personal hero of mine, once told his students: “If you can talk, you can write.”  If I can make at least one reader feel as if I’m speaking directly to him or her I would be forever grateful.

I write simply because I can’t see myself doing anything else. That’s why being a part of the AccessLocal.Tv team is such a great outlet for me. I hope to cut through the media hype and find stories that matter to Sacramentans. I look forward to learning and growing with my team and anyone who just wants to know what’s going on in this great city.