Coming into the SJI bootcamp, one of the things that I wanted to get out of this week was to get better as a journalist, and I knew that in order to do so I’d have to be ready to get pushed out of my comfort zone. By the end of day one, I had already walked through uncharted territory.
I’ve been a sports writer for a little over a year and a half now, working mostly for my school’s newspaper. Over that time, I’ve done plenty of game stories, but none of them had to be done on a tight deadline. Sometimes editors aren’t able to get to my piece until an hour after the game finishes.
Day one immediately hit me with an unprecedented challenge, a game story due five minutes after the final out of Monday's Cardinals vs. White Sox game. From the moment it was announced, the anxiety was eating at me throughout the day, slowly but surely growing stronger as we neared the opening pitch.
Despite the anxiety, however, I did feel confident, not only in myself but the entire class, that we’d be able to get it done. You see, throughout the day, from every speaker we’ve had, we kept hearing about the importance of preparation and information as a journalist, and in our incredible session about deadline writing with Malcom Moran, we got preparation and information on how to handle one of the most stressful aspects of the profession, which in turn led to us getting the job done.
Although deadline writing is a bit of a chaotic artform and felt uncomfortable at times, by doing it I feel like I’m already getting better and growing, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the week holds in store for us.