What I learned from high school journalism…

By Anna Starkey

After spending four semesters in Newspaper, here are nine things that I learned from my interesting experience:

  1. Procrastination is a slippery slope…
    • Once you start, there is no stopping.  Missing one deadline becomes missing three articles and having an F in newspaper.  Instead of waiting until the night before a deadline, I plan to start all of my papers MUCH earlier in college.
  2. I am my own worst enemy…
    • No matter how much I tell myself I “absolutely cannot” write an article about a particular topic, the truth is that I absolutely can write an article about anything.  When it comes to journalism, confidence is key.
  3. Stay updated…
    • Don’t be that person who comes into a Newspaper meeting without having any idea what is going on in the outside world.  Staying updated on current events both locally and globally not only helped me become more aware of the outside world, but it also helped me understand the importance of acknowledging what is going on around me on a day-to-day basis.  Also, it made debates much more interesting.
  4. There are many categories of journalism…
    • When I first entered into the journalism class, I was under the impression that I would solely be covering current events.  To my surprise, the world of journalism can cover pretty much any topic brought to mind.  Newspaper allowed me to cover anything from school community to arts and entertainment.  Really, there is something for everyone.
  5. Nobody wants to be a sports journalist…
    • It is difficult to write about sports without sounding redundant and forgetting to add style.  I’m sure somebody out there would love to be a sports anchor someday, but it is not the career for me.
  6. Titles are both fun and crucial…
    • Creating titles for articles can function as both the most entertaining and most difficult part of journalistic writing.  When in doubt, make a pun.  Puns never fail to please the audience; even if they are incredibly lame.
  7. Interviewing anyone is awkward…
    • Whether I was interviewing my best friend or a random peer, the interview process never became more comfortable.  Since interviews are crucial for most articles, I quickly adapted to this problem by always acknowledging how awkward the situation was, and then sticking my phone in their face in order to capture a proper recording.
  8. Pictures make everything better…
    • When readers look at the EagleView website, they are automatically drawn to articles that include pictures alongside words.  After writing an article that I felt to be lacking in information or style, I always added pictures to make myself–and my article–feel better.  (Yes, I recognize the irony of this article lacking a photograph…it was part of the plan).
  9. How to follow along to instructional dance videos…
    • Newspaper could not be newspaper without the occasional instructional dance video on YouTube.  There is no way to relieve the stress of writing like performing Double-Dream Hands with your classmates.  Always remember to have fun, and not to take anything too seriously!

Thanks again to Ms. Bills and the Newspaper staff for making journalism one of my favorite high school classes!

For extra-stress relief:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dm7yAWpX1Mc

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