Week 15: The struggle for news

Week 15: The struggle for news

Jill Applegate and Sarah Darby, editors-in-chief

Preparing for the fourth issue, what some staff members call the “Christmas Issue,” is always difficult because story ideas are few and far between, but the staff must still produce a 20-page issue.

Sarah speaking:

Although some staff members like to call this next issue the Christmas one, it is difficult for me to be enthusiastic about a themed issue. Granted, that “theme” will really only be on one page, but it is also difficult to come up with topics to write about this time of year, making it tempting to indeed make a Christmas issue. Fall sports are finished and winter ones have yet to start in December. Breaking news also seems to follow the trend and is difficult at the school level to find. Sure, local and world news are not off-limits to write about, but to maintain student interest, the JagWire always tries to find relevant topics even in the awkward few weeks leading up to break. In all areas of school, topics run a bit dry. No one really wants to be at school and it seems a zombie-like daze falls over the student body. In times like these, I wait anxiously for news, any news at all. Nevertheless, 20 pages of topics have been picked and I know the issue will not be an afterthought, at least I hope.

Jill speaking:

Story ideas for issue four are always somewhat like pulling teeth.  There’s not a whole lot going on in the school that we feel people will want to read and, like Sarah said, it’s easy to revert back to theming the issue around the upcoming holiday.  But as a staff, we have to scrounge up enough good content to pull the issue together. This at times can be challenging because after hearing so many dud story ideas, it’s easy to fall into the trance that nothing sounds like a solid page topic. This is also the time of year where you hear story ideas that sound like something that every other school newspaper in America will be doing a story on. We have to really challenge ourselves to make sure that we’re putting a twist on things that will set the story apart. Nevertheless, we were able to come up with another solid issue that I am excited to work on and see what everyone else comes up with as well.

Lesson of the week:

1. Don’t get discouraged by a seeming lack of story options. Just dig a little deeper.

Lesson 15 of being an editor-in-chief: Check.

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