Sometimes I end up kicking ass when I least expect it. NOW IS THAT TIME.
I am having a seriously wonderful week journalism-wise (otherwise too, but who am I to claim I have stuff that isn’t journalism-related?) These wonderful things are as follows:
1. I did some event coverage on Thursday that did not suck. I woke up, made some coffee, went to the event, wrote it up, took a break to take a test in my History of Journalism class, edited with Liz (which I haven’t really gotten to do until this week! And was great!) and then drove into the depths of Iowa with my adorable Ames-bred boyfriend to hang out with his parents and his cats (which also went really well! One of his cats actually liked me, which cats never do).
2. The new UM Press Director was, of course, announced the one and only weekday I was out of town. Which was actually a huge bummer for me, since I’ve been prepping for the announcement for a month, but still ended up as a wonderful thing. A fellow ed-beater went to the announcement and was able to use my notes in his story, so we didn’t miss anything, plus Liz was gracious enough to give me a co-byline even though I wasn’t able to help out on the day of the announcement.
3. That byline was actually a huge thing for me — I was originally listed as “contributing to” the story when it first went up online. I’d been working on the story for a long time, and had a ton of notes and background written up (which is used in the final story) — it was a lot of behind-the-scenes work, and I could see why Liz decided to list me as a contributor — but I was just bummed when I didn’t have a byline on the story. (And I really hope that doesn’t come off as conceited or greedy or anything like that. The Press story had been assigned to me in August and I was ready to go with it, but of course the decision was finally made at the worst possible time for me. That timing was unfortunate and definitely my fault, if anyone’s.)
So I did something that made me super uncomfortable: I asked my editor why I didn’t get as much credit as I thought I deserved. And my boyfriend (and probably even his mom) can attest to how nervous I was to write that email to Liz. I was terrified that I was out of place or rude or over-reaching and a slew of other things, but I wrote the email as humbly and politely as I could.
And then Liz emailed me back and said she was glad I brought it up and “of course” I deserve the byline credit. She was just busy and made the decision quickly. And then on Tuesday she commended me for sticking up for myself. It was AWESOME. I know that the way it worked out was very dependent on who Liz is and who I am and how we work together, and I don’t endorse doing what I did in a universal sense, but, ahhh. I’ve definitely had previous editors and fellow writers roll over me in the past, and I’d never stuck up for myself in that way before. It was seriously encouraging to have it work out the way it did.
4. THEN, I had a GA shift on Tuesday, and I got to work on government shutdown stuff! Which ultimately meant doing a bit of reporting with several other people, and then I was the one to aggregate it all together and do organizey stuff and write the intro. Twelve hours in the office well spent, I’d say.
5. And now, finally, I’m off to cover the general faculty meeting. And tomorrow, I have two more things to cover. So, that will be six stories published in seven days! I’M FINALLY HITTING MY STRIDE, EVERYONE.
P.S. Extra props to T.J. on the press story. What a life saver.
P.P.S. Lol nope only five stories; knew I’d jinx it
MU School of Law receives $1.57 million gift
David Rosenbaum named director of University of Missouri Press
Mid-Missouri programs, services feel impact of government shutdown