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PM Question

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Gob Bluth, Sep 21, 2006.

  1. Gob Bluth

    Gob Bluth Member

    I just moved to a PM paper from a AM daily and I was trying to see how other papers handle the smaller sports. At the AM I was at we always were called by coaches after their games, then we would put them in a roundup. Now, I am trying to see what are methods that worked for some PM's. Do you have coaches call you each morning or do they email their stuff?

    Thanks for the suggestions.
  2. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Get it done the night before. Treat it as an AM cycle or you'll never get caught up in the morning. 7 am becomes 7:30, becomes 8 and then later and later.
  3. Madhavok

    Madhavok Well-Known Member

    I just have the coaches call me after a game. Usually around 9-9:30 is when the calls start coming to my place. I just sit at home and type it all up on my laptop and email the stuff over.
  4. joe

    joe Active Member

    When I worked at a PM, the coaches called (or we called them -- sometimes) in the morning. They were all pretty good about calling, even though they knew it was just for a roundup. Depending on how many schools you cover and how many people you have in the office, it can work. Helps to have small sections, too.
  5. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    Like most others have said, do it the night before.

    Last PM I was at, the four fulltimers would take turns coming in on heavy nights and getting the calls done.
  6. jfs1000

    jfs1000 Member

    Been at a PM for 4 years, after coming over from an AM. Here is my advice:

    With prep coverage, ABSOLUTELY treat it like an AM. You must set hard deadlines in the evening, and if you don't get the info, call them up on deadline. You have to treat it like you have an AM deadline, or else you will run into problems getting info.  No one likes to be called at 7:30 a.m., and many of these people work and can't be reached.

    At our paper we try to have the prep and local sports paginated before the night ios done. We are rarely in past 11 p.m. but on heavy nights to midnight.
    If you are doing any type of writing, I say set personal deadlines.

    The beauty of a PM is you can really write and think out your story. There isn't that robotic AM gamer play-by-play drone. That said, don't stay up to 3 a.m. writing a high school football gamer. If you need extra time, take it. If you want to write it after a beer at the bar, or watching the big game, fine.  But I would think all your copy should be in before 3 a.m (if it is that late it better be a great story too). Writing on deadline at 8 a.m. is unacceptable.

    And don't let your AM buddies give you crap. They have an excuse for their drivel (time). You on the other hand are held to a higher standard.

  7. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    I've worked at a PM for my entire eight years in the business and love it. We switch to an AM cycle on the weekend, then go back to PM on Monday and thus have Sundays off. For my own game stories (except Friday and Saturday) I always write it that night. Get it done while everything is fresh in your head. Plus, it takes me a while to wake up in the morning. I hate writing stories before lunch.

    As for call-ins, most of our high school coaches are teachers too. They have to be at school in the morning, so they call us in the morning. The ones who don't call are the ones who are assholes about it anyway ("Our team lost its softball game 18-1. Nobody wants to hear about that.")
    E-mail and voice mail are also wonderful tools. I try to give out all of our contact information and tell them to do what's easiest for them. It takes a while for some of the newer coaches to grasp how things are done, but once they're been around for a while they catch on.

    Of course, we're a smaller paper (about 15,000), too. Might be easier to use a different method at a bigger shop.
  8. zman82

    zman82 Member

    agree with the am cycle guys. our pm shift was rough because you'd always have to be back in the morning to finish up, so we always tried to get everything done and in by 1 a.m. whoever we missed at night we'd try to catch in the morning and didn't waste time writing stories or folling with roundups after that. another advantge to having everything done is if something breaks,you'll have time (maybe an hour or 90 minutes) to get something put together before the am papers the next day.
  9. patchs

    patchs Active Member

    When I was at a PM, we ran it like an AM but a late AM.
    We would come in at 7 p.m., deadline for calls was 11, and it would be edited by 11:30-11:45 p.m.
    Then pages (we usually had 4-5) would be caught up by 12:30 a.m., then it was just waiting for west coast games to end to fill in the blanks.
    God, I would hate it when a SD-LA game went extra innings, you could get out as late as 4 a.m.
    Not much happens between 2:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. (our presstime) and if it did (Olympics in Austrailia or Japan), we would leave a hole and one of us would come in about 8 a.m. and update.
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