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Thursday, August 31, 2006


I'm Back, But Still Unpacking

Eight days. Gone. But here I am again.

If you're a regular reader you know I was in Chicago last week for the Society of Professional Journalists convention. What you may not know is that I was there to serve as an advisor to university students in The Working Press program, which produced three newspapers full of stories and photos about the annual event.

The students did an excellent job reporting on the workshops and speeches for which they had prepared in advance. But they also met the challenge of covering a couple unexpected political battles that erupted prior to the annual election of officers. Needless to say, there was no shortage of news at this year's convention.

The students, and the SPJ staff, did a magnificent job. Joe Skeel, editor of Quill, coordinated the program (no small feat when you consider he coordinated the application process and arrange for Apple to provide the enviable collection of desktop and laptop computers that equipped the newsroom). Skeel also served as the publication's editor-in-chief while performing various other duties as an SPJ staffer.

By the convention's end, many attendees remarked on the quality of the publication and praised the student's work. It was well-deserved.

I knew going into it that the bulk of my time would be consumed by the program, editing copy and helping guide the students. Nonetheless, I was hoping to find more time to blog more than I did. At the end of each day (11 p.m. or later) the last thing I wanted to do was turn on another computer, so I didn't.

The convention ended Sunday, but I did not come straight home. I had to make an unrelated trip to another midwestern city, but arrived home in LA last night, determined to avoid leaving my wonderful LA neighborhood for weeks, determined to finish editing the novel I just completed.

I'm still trying to catch up with the work on which I fell behind while I was away. I'm also trying hard to lose this east-coast jet lag, and get things in order for the start of another semester (I'm teaching a college-level journalism course this fall).

My goal is to post a half-dozen new blog entries by the end of the day Friday. I took plenty of notes at the convention, including some helpful website links, some audio from SPJ workshops, and some photographs. I'm eager to put them to the use I intended. So please, check back.

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Blogger Wendy Hoke said...

Welcome home, TJ! Your contributions to the success of the convention were immeasurable.

Friday, September 1, 2006 11:39:00 AM PDT  

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