Author Archives: watsonb18

Filak 7 & 8

It’s hard to imagine that everything that happens has already happened before, every story has already been told , although, I suppose it is true for journalism.

Good stories are made through good practices: preparation, grammar, spelling and reviewing. While covering different types of events, it is important to keep in mind the other people doing so as well. If many people are getting the story – like in a press conference – then the journalist must ensure they have the correct quotes and verbiage.

Finding deep stories seems daunting, and certainly not as simple as “open your mind’s eye.” However, deep stories can be found anywhere when you ask “why?” This can be asked to any person, place, idea or thing, especially people. Everyone’s story is different.

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RR6: Knight 7 & Filak 2

Balance is a key ingredient to life, food portioning and cooking, yet it is also important in journalistic writing. No writer wants to be so honest that it enrages half the readers, or so dishonest that they are discredited. It takes a balance of being honest and appearing honest. Honestly, it never occurred to me that in being honest I may not appear honest. Being honest comes with being accurate, avoiding generalizations/overblown statements and avoiding assumptions. Good writing strays from ambiguity. Respecting the reader means not shouting at them with fonts, exclamations points and italics, not embellishing the story and not editorializing the story. The journalist provides the fact – not the truth – the reader creates the truth. Creating your own conclusion disrupts your fairness and balance.

I know it’s crazy, but journalism requires you to think. A journalist should show up prepared and ready to ask the tough questions that encourage the story and help the reader out. It is not about the writer, it’s about the reader. The bias and the credit don’t matter unless the reader says so. The skill it takes for writers to put themselves and their egos second comes with time – as does thinking critically.

RR5: Knight 2, Filak 1

Who would read the articles journalists write if no one found them interesting? According to Filak and Knight, this is the journalists responsibility – to make the story relevant to the readers.

“This is a goldfish and it has a longer attention span than your readers do,” said Filak. “That means we have to work a lot harder and a lot smarter to get their attention span and keep it.”

If not serious about their profession, Journalists could often succumb to fake new and bending the media to their biases, weakening their reputations amongst professionals and the people. These people, like Filak said, take advantage of the people that want their own biases confirmed and search the web for confirmation bias.

Knight points out the decisions of which stuff is newsworthy enough to go into the lead and the article. In my past two pieces, I have struggled with making decisions about the topic of the articles and what main points I use. I never thought about the information being in the lead as important as the information in the story.

I have a pet peeve when it comes to social biases, fake news and agenda setting. The news is a story, not a campaign for people to trash their enemies.

Profile: Dr. Kathy Blandin

Anna Watson  

Media Writing 1 

Dr. Joe Dennis  

23 February 2019 

Profile 1: Dr. Kathy Blandin 

Email: kblandin@piedmont.edu 

Phone: 678-575-3982 (cell) 

Many people search happiness and contentment in their careers, and Dr. Kathy Blandin found it at Piedmont College.  

 Blandin worked at Sautee Nacoochee, an arts center near Helen, Georgia, in 2007 when she was contacted by the former chair of the theater department at Piedmont College to teach children’s theater. She took the job as an adjunct teacher, commuting back and forth from Sautee Nacoochee to Piedmont College, daily. After four years, Blandin realized she enjoyed teaching at Piedmont more than working at Sautee Nacoochee. She transferred full-time to the college after someone stepped down.  

“Every day is a little bit different,” Blandin said, describing her job as something that’s “meant to be.”  

Directing, teaching and occasionally acting, Blandin enjoys letting her creative juices flow. In the first year of the Make Mom Proud fundraiser – a fundraiser started by a student who lost his mother to cancer and wanted to raise money for a local organization – Blandin performed the role of the mother in the student-written play. She also used the leftover show posters from her first summer season here to create her own wallpaper in her office. 

Since teaching theater for more than seven years at Piedmont, Blandin has had a direct impact on the students and coworkers she works with.  

“I am always inspired by her ability to not only teach the subject, but the students themselves,” said Dr. William Gabelhausen, chair of the theater department, “Dr. Blandin is detail oriented and focused on student success.”  

Blandin encourages students to define their own success. One of her goals is to help open up her students’ worlds. She does this by making her classes enjoyable and engaging for all.  

“I was never really interested in theater, but she definitely found a way to make it fun for every student,” said sophomore Macy Higgins, who was in her intro to theater class. “She has a great personality that flows well with her teaching techniques.” 

As Blandin wants her students to have their own measuring stick for success, she has her own as well, being the “happiest ever and really content.” 
 

Julie Dreier: A Woman Seeking Success

Prompt 1

At the age of 46, mother of three, Julie Dreier owns two business: one in marketing and advertising and Girl in Paris, based in Clarksville, GA. Girl in Paris has been set to receive its registered trademark on March 12th. The company has been open since 2006 and has recently been gaining traction with high profile clients like Zac Brown Band and a personal friend of Dreier’s who has retired from flying Barack Obama in Marine 1 to open a flight business of his own.

“I’m super excited I got my swag,” Julie Dreier said.

Ms. Julie Dreier was not a success overnight, she endured trials and tribulations to become the woman she is today. After working three jobs and trying to go to school, Dreier put her goal of graduating on hold in order to raise a family. She lost a child at 36 weeks old in 1997.

“People act different when they learn that the child I lost was a miscarriage, there is no comparison of the pain. I never got to bring him home either.”

She has been patient through her eight year engagement, awaiting the day she may walk down the aisle to the man she loves. Dreier has returned to school to pursue a degree. It is her dream to walk across the stage in a cap and gown with a diploma in hand.

“It would be like putting in missing puzzle pieces,” Julie Dreier said.

RR4: Chapter 3

Knight

My favorite part about writing for news or yearbook is writing ledes. They are clever, witty and punny, yet I only thought of them as short sentences. I never thought of them as being able to control half of a story or text. This is a skill I hope to develop in my writing, for I have always wondered how authors could see the bigger picture when they were only on page three. This is not a skill gained overnight, but one acquired with time and patience. It is a craft.

I like the “Nut-Graf” approach, it allows the writer room to inform the uncultured public about what is going on in the world. It is also a style I follow that I did not know had a title.

Filak

Well at least this guy spells leads right. The two chapters have more in common with each other than just the number, they also share the same topic. Reading one after the other is quite repetitive, however, Filak did offer more types of leads than Knight did. Some include the “Many people/ Some people/Everybody/Nobody” leads, “You” leads and Second-day leads. Filak also goes into more detail to help readers develop their leads by introducing the inverted pyramid and the encouraging the use of quotes.

RR3: Interviewing

Interviewing is a pain in the ass – to most people. I tend to enjoy it, as I enjoy the subject. Interviewing well is harder when the topic and subject are disliked. It is also easier when interviewing is viewed as having a conversation with a stranger. An interview with someone that previously knows you, such as an acquaintance is much more nerve-wracking, than an interview with a stranger. There are always expectations to meet.

Interviews are important so the article are not here-say. Direct quotes from sources keep the story strong and grounded to the topic. It never occurred to me that there were different types of interviews for different types of stories. I feel as though the hostile type gives journalists the bad representation of paparazzi.

The key to interviewing is being prepared. If Knight had been prepared he would not have blown his interview with President Nixon just because he was feeling jitters. Being prepared calms jitters, allows you to think through your questions and helps you navigate the interview with courage and respect.

Images are extremely important to people and companies – as they should be. For that is what gives everyone else a perspective. Such as interviews, not everyone can go up to the President Trump and ask him what materials he wants the wall made out of. The information collected by interview is what forms the stories – giving the story and the writer and the medium credibility.