Saturday, January 9, 2010

Ten reasons I don't miss the newsroom, and one big one why I do

Ten reasons why I don’t miss working in newspapers anymore:

1. No more cell phone or pager going off when I’m on vacation with my family with a question about my story.

2. No more idiot readers calling me to tell me how much better they know my job than I do.

3. No more idiot editors calling me to tell me how much better they know my beat than I do.

4. No more 8 hours pay for 12 hours of work.

5. No more endless memos about how the most important thing in the editor’s day was that my desk should be clean.

6. No more airhead bosses telling me how we all need to “write with authority.”

7. No more reading my stories in print with stupid errors edited INTO them.

8. No more being awake half the night wondering what stupid assignment awaits me in the morning.

9. No more putting together a great investigative piece only to have a big city lawyer and spineless editor remove the facts the public really needed to know.

10. No more blankety-blank Sunday story meetings. Or any meeting heading by an editor, for that matter.

One reason I do miss working in newspapers:

1. The rush you get from chasing a crooked politician or following up leads to a great story and seeing it in print. We endured all the above for that one high. It was like crack.

I'm finally cured. (Feel free to add your own - remember anonymous here, is really anonymous, but all blog rules apply, so keep it clean. I know it will be hard).


Anonymous said...

One big reason why I miss the newsroom: I miss what it was. The kids who work there now (and the only person over 40 is the temp. editor who actually knows how a newsroom is supposed to operate) are doing their best, they just don't know any different. Heck most of them just came from weeklies or a classroom. It has taken months to get used to the pain that followed being told my job was over. A job I loved and dedicated my life to. I think about what it cost my family and the time I didn't spend with my kids because I was dedicated to my job. And to what end? Retirement cut off, the chance to work ended because they said I made too much money. Now they want to hire more reporters and contrary to what I've read here, I do know that a couple people were called about coming back, but said no. As hard as it was to get used to the idea of not being there, of not being appreciated for what you gave, it is impossible to imagine going back. Not because of the money, but because there's nothing left. No energy, no spark. The offer is from $12 to $19 an hour, depending on the job. Not a bad wage, more than McDonald's, but it's a job wage, not a career wage. It's too bad the powers in charge never consulted the employees about what they would be willing to give up to keep a job. Most loved what they did so much they would have done it for half the price, days off without pay, or even cuts to benefits. They cut off the appendages, you can live without appendages, it's just a different kind of life.

Jan Scholl said...

A clean desk???? Not in my lifetime!

Anonymous said...

Jim: was "write with authority" one of those phrases you and other reporters would write on a grid while playing "bingo" during a meeting?

You really should blog about that sometime. Dan S told me that story and had me in stitches.