Monday, October 18, 2010
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
I learned this week how public officials avoid reporters. I called Boonville's mayor and city administrator every hour, for six hours and every time they were "busy" or "out of the office." I even tried the mayor's home phone! I sat at City Hall for 30 minutes waiting for the city administrator to return from lunch to confirm information (I wrote my story while I waited) and he managed to still slip around me. I ended up finding a councilman's address in the phone book, calling him (no answer), and going to his house - that's how I got my comment! The city administrator ended up calling me back when I back at KOMU, so I got my information confirmed before it went on-air.
Reporting this story was bittersweet yet exciting at the same time. Bittersweet because it was my last reporting shift and exciting because it was my last reporting shift! Next week, I start learning to produce!
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
This week I learned the true definition of being a persistent journalist. I was working on this story about bridges being replaced and was trying to find a way to humanize it. B&B Auto Body Inc. was located about one mile from the bridge so I headed over there after I talked with the engineer and construction crew working on the bridge. The owner, Paul Beeler, was not at the office but left his phone number. He answered when I called and said he'd be back in about 45 minutes. I maximized my time to go shoot a stand-up and headed back to the shop. He called saying he'd be later than he thought. I was bummed I couldn't interview him because his view would be the strongest about how the bridge closing is going to affect the people around it. I went to New Franklin, the nearest town, but everyone I talked to said they did not use the bridge. I called Paul back and told him I could meet him wherever he was and I only needed 10 minutes of his time. He agreed and said he'd be back at the shop in a half hour. I got there 15 minutes early and he was there so we did the interview. He had never been on camera before but he was a natural! He wasn't nervous, spoke in short, concise sentences that were easily used as soundbites and even provided me with a few nat pops. I couldn't have been happier that I was persistent with getting an interview with him.