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Inch counts -- good or bad?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Clever username, Mar 1, 2007.

  1. melock

    melock Well-Known Member

    That's what I always say when someone asks me how long I want them to write.
  2. Moondoggy

    Moondoggy Member

    I wish I had written that first. :)
  3. Clever username

    Clever username Active Member

    And it's fucking annoying.

    I keed. I keed.
  4. melock

    melock Well-Known Member

    What can I say? I try.
  5. ondeadline

    ondeadline Well-Known Member

    What pisses me off is when writers are given an inch count on the budget and write too long. Other writers, who I obviously appreciate a lot more, ask before they write over the length listed on the budget.
  6. butchie

    butchie New Member

    In the old days, before PC, when a reporter asked how long a story should be, the reply would be, "Make it like a woman's skirt, long enough to cover the subject, short enough to keep it interesting."
  7. rpmmutant

    rpmmutant Member

    NO story should be longer than 20 inches. Anything more is too long to read in the john.
    That said, I had an editor who believed a man's leg need be long enough to reach the ground. Newspaper stories are the same.
  8. spnited

    spnited Active Member

    Sorry, folks, but "write what it's worth" does not work. We deal with a finite amount of space every day and x-number of stories to fit into that space. You, as an editor, have to determine what each story is worth in relation to the space available.
    To say "write what it's worth" means you simply are not doing your job.
  9. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

    spnited - i agree and disagree. i believe many writers want too much flexibility, and i think too many editors don't want to hold anyone's balls to the fire as far as inch count is concerned. but, at the same time, sometimes "12 inches can't nearly do what i just witnessed justice" is dead on.
  10. Taylee

    Taylee Member

    Discretion is advised.
    I've read 10-inch stories that were too long and 30-inch stories that were too short.
    Inch counts should be determined by the stories. Routine game? 12 inches. Feature on a kid who qualified to the state cross country meet a month after bering hit by a car while training? I'd at least double that length, if necessary.
  11. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    Not to be a jerk about it, but many reporters at the smaller papers can't tell you what a story's worth because they assume that, because they're writing it, they need every since inch they produce. I read an 80-inch town council meeting paper at a small town I stopped in for lunch one day. It included, literally, every single word uttered in that meeting. If you were to ask that reporter if he wrote what it's worth, I'd be willing to bet he'd say yes.
  12. Barsuk

    Barsuk Active Member

    I'm sorry, did you say you READ an 80-inch town council meeting story? You, sir, need to have your head examined (perhaps moreso than the dolt who wrote an 80-inch town council meeting story).
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