Our dirt bikes bring all the boys to the yard. Damn right, they're better than yours.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Could I love a newspaper again?

I had a two-and-a-half hour interview in Windsor, NS yesterday for a copy editor position. It's a brand-new daily newspaper, and they're looking for someone who has some idea what the hell a newspaper is supposed to read and look like.
I don't think I'd had that much newspaper-based fun in ages. We tore that paper apart (they've only been publishing since August or something) and I told them that columns and their widths had to have some consistency, photos had to have a focal point (or, at least, something interesting in them) and that hairlines separate news stories and ads quite well. I also talked about things that I only had a passing comprehension of, like selling ads in standardized sizes, so that you don't have to fuck up the layout when an ad goes halfway through a column.
The managing and news editor sort of gasped, then looked at each other, and said something to the effect that they were unable to slay the mighty dragon that is their advertising manager. There were 4 ads in the whole paper, and the most expensive one, on the back page, looked like it printed at about 12 dpi. When they went to the ad manager about this, he said "So?"
This scares me. Editorially, the paper was fairly clean and well written, despite the fact that there's no news in the area ever. But with a garbage-truck of an ad department, how long can a daily newspaper last?
But I'm still excited about working there. The paper's in a cute little town, and the people who interviewed me were funny and competent, if not a little lost and frustrated. I think I'd be a fun place to work, even if it didn't last forever. Hopefully, they call me back.


Anonymous collin said...

You should head west and straighten some shit out.
Good on you.

3:15 PM

Blogger Superdude said...

How far west?

3:53 PM

Anonymous collin said...

I was eluding to the lack of standardized columns in a certain Newspaper that I work for. I actually measured a front page column that streched 4.5 inches. It was horrifying.

8:06 PM

Blogger Superdude said...

Do they need copy editors? Small towns seem to breed bad layout.

11:07 PM

Anonymous collin said...

Depends on your meaning of copy editor. Layout people yes, through two half reporters/half paginators are doing in now and neither want to put stuff on pages. It's also round 53 of newsroom squeeze in order to cut costs and get managers big-assed bonuses. A quick head count the other day showed 5 managers 12 employees.

5:49 PM

Blogger Chris! said...

So, what's the deal? You hear from these guys are what?

12:32 AM

Blogger Superdude said...

I'm waiting SO desperately for their call. I don't think I've wanted anything so badly since news editor at the Gateway. That's the position I worked for and pined for the most. This position is the one that I think would get me back on track. It'd be really nice to get back into the industry. They use indesign, swhich would be a nice learing experience, too. Thanks for reading, everyone. It really means a lot to me right now to have some kind of support, even though I know full well that the selection process for newspapers is arbitrary.
ALso, I called them today. They said they'd tell me what's what on monday.

1:50 AM

Blogger Alana said...

Good luck, Neal!

9:04 AM

Blogger The Jacobs Family said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:59 PM

Anonymous jamber said...

Didn't two bodies turn up in the Valley this month?
Irregardless, you sound like you could teach them a thing or two about working at a newspaper. I hope you get the job. Let us know.
BTW, r u single?


10:06 PM

Blogger Ladysir said...

Yay, Neal! Glad to hear you're getting back in the news biz. Good luck.

1:22 AM

Blogger Superdude said...

BTW, who is Jamber?

10:36 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

And? . . .

6:05 PM

Blogger Dave said...

Any word yet, Neal?

On the job, I mean, not the Jamber.

3:42 AM

Blogger Superdude said...

No word yet. And Anonymous, "And?..." what?
Also, Jamber has not manifested.

12:56 PM


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