Finalists for best story of the semester

Dylan’s story about a new home for the Mirror Lake ducks.

Leisa’s story about a hat tradition that’s 100 years old.

Bree’s column about her dad’s deployment.


Getting a job!

Network!! Look and listen!! Don’t be intimidated by “requirements.” Can I live with this? Stay humble but hungry.

Here is a great post on tools you can use to make yourself stand out when applying for a job. And note what he says: RESUMES SHOULD BE ONE PAGE! JUST ONE! ONLY ONE!

A very prominent alumna passed this along for me to share with you all.

Interview tips:

Be early.

Dress nice.

Do your homework on the company, the people….and the competition.

Take notes.

Have questions, even basic ones. Examples: typical work day? Why do they work there? Highlight this year? Goals?

If you’re stumped, stall effectively.Examples: Restate the question. Tell you what it won’t be.

Eye contact.


Bring examples.

Always bring ideas.

Please and thank you.

Follow up.

Ask for feedback either way.


Variety of journalism topics to discuss

What do you think of ESPN’s interview/terms with Janay Rice?  Or the Today Show’s “exclusive?”

Interesting feature here from the Dispatch, but you all should have known it was coming!

Another example of social media getting “communication professionals” in trouble.

Feature Writing

Good story. Compelling characters. Full use of senses. Strong scene setting. Narrative arc. Good quotes. Deep reporting. Memorable. Not hard news, but has a news hook of some kind.

Some good ones from Lantern:

Best feature of the year 2011 according to Associated Collegiate Press.

Friends and rivals on the men’s basketball team.

Proof that OSU has secret societies…at least one!

I wrote this for Poynter. It uses 1st person, which normally you would not do, but features do let you bend/break some rules.

PROFILES!! Get to know a person, department, business, etc. on a different level than you and your audience normally would. More time you spend on these, the better they will be. Most are “positive,” but never forget the “to be sure” section, even if only a paragraph. Nothing is perfect. Life is not all sunshine and rainbows.

Here’s one from this semester that one of you wrote.

Here is a powerful one from ESPN and it is about far more than sports.

Election Night primer…and then a shift to First Person writing!

Here’s how the AP makes calls on Election winners.

Random question — what’s wrong with this lede:

A recent study found that 85 percent of journalism majors are having trouble writing ledes about surveys and research.


Just read this piece and it stuck with me.  This is somber, but important.

This piece ran in The Lantern last year. Short and powerful.

One of my favorite stories. Only time I wrote in first person for the AP as a full-time reporter.

This is one of the better personal experience/memoir pieces I’ve read in a while. The author ran the AP’s political team in DC when I was on the business staff.

Here is a first-person commentary that was broadcast, not written in a paper, etc.  Daily Show (Jon Stewart) weighs in on Ferguson/race.

Today’s presentation

In light of our talk on Monday, and mentioning this as a headline example in the past, what do you think of the story now?

Lantern coverage has evolved. Do you see it? EIC at the time had to address it.


1. Numerals are fine. Proper AP style in a story requires you to write: “The man robbed three women at gunpoint, police said.” But the hed for that story could say: Police: armed man robs 3 women.

2. Periods are not needed! Very rare that you will need to use a period in a headline unless you are trying to write complete sentences, which is also rare. A semi-colon or even a comma can be used to introduce a new thought. For example: Jobless rate hits 10 percent; 2 million people lost jobs in Oct.

3. Almost always OK to replace the word “and” with a comma. For example: Obama, Biden to visit Iraq….or Obama visits Iraq, Iran, Japan, China

4. Heds do NOT need to be complete sentences. See examples above.

5. Avoid question heds, quote heds, etc. They can be effective….RARELY!

6. Make sure the headline accurately portrays the story that follows. Think of them as sneak previews, OR PROMISES THAT MUST  BE KEPT.

7. Here are some to avoid! And a few more because they are too obvious!

8. It can leave lasting impression if headlines are misleading or wrong.