For starters, I am not the newsroom #Candybandit. To label me as such is libel and slander.
The end of week four finds me exhausted from the effort. It is the good kind of exhaustion that comes with the knowledge that you’ve put your best foot forward and done all that you can do to make things be as good as they can be.
Yet, there is the knowledge that you can always do more.
Our first issue of the Union came out in week three on Feb. 28.
We did such a phenomenal job; we even met our deadline with no mishaps. It caused my friend and fellow editor Rigo to say, “What’s AP style for #swag?”
This week, things didn’t go so well. Writers, including myself, abused deadline extensions if they met the deadline at all. There were huge problems with page 1 that our EIC had to fix at the last minute. Because the original writer was completely overwhelmed with putting out other fires, I had to write an editorial in ten minutes.
I wasn’t at all happy with the way my stories were edited. This is not a knock against the editors; as an editor myself, I know the difficulty faced when trying to meet a word count and having to cut out part of what a writer has said; it’s painful, and when I do it to someone else, I feel punched in the gut, so I can imagine what my counterparts on the other pages struggle with.
Still, it made me aware of something about myself. I am a perfectionist and sensitive about my words. These will be my portfolio clips after all, and it is important to me that they be representative of my actual writing and not another person’s interpretation of my writing.
I want to be sitting there when the editor edits my work. I want to have a say in how my writing is portrayed on the page. Fortunately for me, the editors I work with are OK with this, so it shouldn’t be a problem going forward.
That in itself is representative of the camaraderie we have in the newsroom this semester. Everyone is loving each other, and everyone is having a good time doing the job at hand. We have our silly moments and sometimes have to be reined in by our adviser, but overall everyone is here to work, and the teamwork that we have going is what is going to push our paper and all the related publications to the next level.
In the middle of things, it’s always good to pause and take a moment to assess what has been happening. Figure out what went wrong, what it took to fix it, and how it can be done better in the future.
For me, this means beginning work on articles as soon as they are assigned to me. I should be fleshing out my column ideas well ahead of schedule each week. In order to better service those writing for my page, I need to have a clear understanding of how many words go into each element on my page so that I can properly convey that.
Onward and upward.
And still, we rise.