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Avoid the obvious

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by joe_schmoe, Oct 30, 2014.

  1. joe_schmoe

    joe_schmoe Active Member

    To my fellow sports journalists who have to cover a high school game (or any other event) this Friday:
    As you know Friday is Halloween. Please avoid working in any type of Halloween lead into your story.
    They are tempting, they can even be cutesy But they are overdone, and often way too forced. So unless you are extremely talented, don't let your readers cringe at your work.

  2. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    'Tis the season!
  3. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    throw out the record books in this rivalry

    A tale of two halves

    it was the best of times/worst of times

    sweet revenge

    we got no respect

    weather cliches -- unless it was a REAL factor, nobody really cares

    "The experts were wrong" -- Las Vegas doesn't pick HS games
  4. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    Halloween reference is one of those "you get to do this once in a career, so make it count" things for me.

    It does remind me that I need to caution our younger guys about that before Friday night.
  5. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    The Bumfuck Giants tricked the Bumblefuck Royals on Friday night and it was a treat for the fans ....
  6. Steak Snabler

    Steak Snabler Well-Known Member

    I once told a room full of stringers that if I got any Friday 13th ledes that night, they were all fired.
  7. Mystery Meat II

    Mystery Meat II Well-Known Member

    This is one of those things that only we'd care about. Your average reader doesn't know or care how often you made a holiday reference in a lede unless you did it every day or they were keeping meticulous stats, in which case there's another problem.

    I get not wanting to encourage lazy writing, but I don't think anyone who picks up the paper is going to be upset if they see a Halloween-themed lede on the story about the football game that took place on Halloween.
  8. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    I kind of tend to agree with MM here, and that's a 180 degree change from how I felt about it when I was covering preps as a full-time gig.

    Here's the thing: You may think it's trite. And you may think it appears in every story in the paper. But, meanwhile, the kids playing in the game think it's a big deal that the game's on Halloween. The fans think it's a big deal that the game's on Halloween. The school will think it's a big deal - "Monster Mash" and "Thriller" will be playing on stadium speakers everywhere tomorrow during warm-ups. And, finally, 90 percent of readers are going to read one game story from Friday night - theirs.

    Who are we to ignore what, to the people involved and who care, feels like a big deal?

    Same thing with Senior Night.
  9. doctorquant

    doctorquant Well-Known Member

    Were I still a sports writer, here's how I'd answer your question ...

    "We are the ones who are hoping to use this clip (and others) to get a job at which we don't have to cover high schools."
  10. 29

    29 New Member

    It's like 'the good, the bad and the ugly' — you get to use it once
  11. RecoveringJournalist

    RecoveringJournalist Well-Known Member

    That's also the rule for the question lede.
  12. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    Then that's up to you, isn't it?
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