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Sports editor: Your day

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Illinoissportseditor, Oct 10, 2008.

  1. I remember a post on here a couple weeks ago about a sports editor in Jacksonville, FL having some fun with a video basically talking about what he does. I do admit it was something different, but I got to thinking, what do I do in a typical day?

    I can't speak for everyone on the board, but I wanted to share how my day went yesterday (Thursday). I hit the road at 11 a.m. for an hour drive to a grade school baseball state semifinals...yes I said grade school. There I spend five hours covering three games (two at the same time). I make it back just before 7 p.m. where I get to spend less than an hour talking with my son and asking him how his day at kindergarten was. I had yesterday's leftover meatloaf while sitting at my home computer typing out the 600 word Game 1 story I had scribbled down on a pad of paper while waiting for Game 2 to begin.

    I make it into the office around 8 p.m. and still have high school soccer and a golf state tournament to round up on the phone. Luckily both coaches answered on the first try. I head to the fax machine where I find two cross country meets, a tennis match, and some volleyball stats.

    All this I have to type in. I get set to lay out the pages with the stories and the photos I had taken from the grade school game and it turned out that I did not have room on my pages for the volleyball or cross country. I had two pages for Friday with a nice sized ad on 1B and half of 2B (I normally get 3 pages).

    Finally, when it's all said and done I'm out of the office about 2 a.m.

    I have been fighting with my paper for some time now about getting a second sports writer. We had one when I first got here, but when they left they never hired anyone...that was back in February.

    Please tell me I'm not on an island when it comes to overworked, lonely sports editor out there.
  2. Jeremy Goodwin

    Jeremy Goodwin Active Member

    Is grade school baseball really that big in your area? Was it worth spending seven hours covering it?

    Edit: I'm not trying to be a jerk, but if you are complaining about spending just one hour with your kid, maybe you could scale back on that event and cover something happening in town.
  3. Jeremy Goodwin

    Jeremy Goodwin Active Member

  4. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    That's amazing that there are grade school kids playing baseball season. When I was younger baseball season was April-June.
  5. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    You had leftover meatloaf? Lucky!
  6. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Grade school baseball: If you're running anything more than a standalone photo or a box score, you're doing WAY too much.
  7. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member


    Let me be serious here for a minute.

    Why are you driving an hour to cover an event and typing in the story at home? You need to have a laptop to take with you so that you can work ahead on your stories and stats.

    That's just crazy.

    Also, discourage your coaches from sending in crap via fax. Can't you have them email it so you don't have to type in everything from scratch? Can't be any harder on their parts.

    You've got to use the technology to make your job a little easier, dude.
  8. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Throw your fax machine in the dumpster. Tell the coaches if they want anything to make the paper they need to email it to you.

    A 600-word gamer on grade school baseball? If your dateline isn't Williamsport or if a one-legged kid isn't playing, that's beyond absurd.
  9. TrooperBari

    TrooperBari Active Member

    You're not. What you described is not out of the ordinary for any number of SEs at itty-bitty weeklies or small-town dailies. All you can do is stay calm, prioritize and get as much help as you can from your coaches. How many schools are in your coverage area, if I may ask?

    Mizzou is absolutely correct. Covering grade school baseball is bad enough in the summer, but doing it at this time of year is madness. An action shot, extended cutline and results in agate should be more than enough. Was there nothing else to cover, or did certain members of your paper's management team have relatives playing in the tournament?

    Best of luck getting the help you need. If your company won't help you, you need to help yourself.
  10. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I was thinking that grade-school baseball had to be a publisher's mandate. If not, you gotta re-prioritize, pronto.

    Good calls on the fax machine.
  11. JackReacher

    JackReacher Well-Known Member

    What if half your coaches don't have e-mail? It'd be nice to be able to tell coaches what you just said, but then reality hits and, alas, you might have to take a fax or 20, at least here in....where am I again?
  12. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    My 85-year-old grandmother, who lives in assisted living, has email.

    What do you think a coach is more likely to have, email or a fax machine?

    If, God forbid, he doesn't have email, tell him to pass the box score off to an overzealous parent who desperately wants to see mention of little Timmy's two doubles in the box score, and have them email it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2015
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