I already know I am going to fail the deadline for page 5, and I want to scream.
I purposely set everyone’s deadlines so I could get everything edited and onto the page on time. So what happened?
One of my reporters completed her assignment on time, and I was so happy about that because she is new and just learning the ropes, but she went right out and handled her beat like a star.
The problem? We are missing half the attribution information for each of the six quotes she got. It is highly unlikely that she would be able to track down those six people again to get that information, so we are likely going to have to go back to the drawing board and get six new quotes along with six new photos.
I don’t blame the reporter; I blame myself.
As an editor, part of my job is to make sure that I explain everything about the assignment in detail so that the writer knows what they are looking for when they go out and start work on a story. This really means every detail, because some things that may seem obvious to a person that has been on the paper for three semesters is not so obvious for someone who is just starting out in both J1 and J11 simultaneously.
In short, I messed up, and now I will pay for it in my grade, because not having that info means I fail the page deadline.
This will never happen again.
I am actually trolling Camayak right now, like it’s a social networking site or something. From the comment feed, I can see that Jessica is active in it as well, and so we’ve basically turned the comments into a chat room as we go through and turn pitches made by Union staff into real assignments.
Listen. You wish your Friday night was this live.
On a sunny, hot Friday in September, the newsroom is virtually empty. Jessica and Marquis are my only companions as I sit at my desk getting work done. Kimberly, our ad manager, must left with her twin sister, and the newsroom has that calm feeling of an office that is emptying out as everyone exits into Friday, prepared to enjoy their weekend. I like it like this.
This semester, the newsroom feels different. We come to work and there is a lighter feeling in the air. That sense of rush and panic has not hit us yet, and if things continue to move along the way they have been, we may never hit that feeling throughout the entire semester.
Imagine getting an email from our adviser letting us know that there were no more stories available for writers to grab in our workflow management tool. That has never happened before; in prior semesters we’ve had to beg people to take stories. Now, the stories are getting snatched up as fast as we can add them into the system.
I love this feeling. I love coming in this newsroom to work. I love the group of peers I have on my team this semester. I love my job. I love this life.
Student journalism: it’s not just a job, it’s an adventure.
There’s something to be said about finding my rhythm quickly and sticking to it.
Kate is always stressing the deadline.
The fact is there are deadlines everywhere; they don’t exist solely in journalism.
So I head into the weekend with a plate full of delicious tasks to tackle, and tackle them I will, but as I do so I want to be ever mindful of part of my new personal mantra: always be ahead of the deadline.