We Have to Cut

via freepik.com

via freepik.com

My boss has started to tell Michelle, Louisa and I that we need to cut our stories down. He said we are “spoiled” in how much we get to write each day.

He then admitted that he needs the extra copy that we are writing because the pages are “wide open.”

He has told us that at the last two or three news staff meetings. It took me by surprise each time. I wasn’t offended, but I was sort of concerned. And I still am.

I think if I had to average how long my stories have been for the last six months, they’d be about 14 to 16 inches. I know that’s kind of long, but I’ve been covering some crazy things and we’ve been doing weather stories on a weekly basis it seems. Those stories cannot be 10 to 12 inches. I’m sorry that just cannot happen.

I understand where he is coming from, though.

I’ve noticed that other papers rarely have long stories. I don’t think our stories are too long, but they are longer than others. Then again, we have a different layout then most papers and our pages haven’t shrunk over the last few years.

So, this week I made an effort to cut my stories down shorter than what I’m used to. Trust me, it wasn’t fun. I regretted the “exercise” all week. It sucked.

It’s something that I’m going to keep working on. It’s not too hard. I have to write the story and then cut it each morning. It’s not an ideal exercise for working on deadline, but it’ll prepare me for when Mike asks the reporters to do it for every story.

I’m almost waiting for it to happen at this point. That may sound a bit down, but if that’s what we have to do, I’ll do it.

I don’t want to piss off the editors for writing stories longer than they should be. I know Michelle and Louisa feel the same way. It’ll be a long process, but I know we will be able to manage it.

I’ll keep you posted on how all of that goes.

Jonathan

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