Learning Blog: Objective writing and covering sports

I wrote for my high school newspaper, the Pony Express for my last two years of high school and gained a foundational knowledge of news writing through writing for that paper that I was able to utilize throughout high school and college.  My sophomore year of college I took an intro to creative writing class and was able to explore a more fictional type of writing where the rules are more lax.  Although I believe I benefitted from the class and really enjoy fiction and creative writing, I also believe that my news writing suffered because of it.

This semester I am writing for the Spectator as a staff writer as well as taking this beginning journalism class.  The very first thing I noticed after writing my first article for the Spectator was how much had to be edited in my story.  The most common thing that was edited?  Attributions.  In my intro to creative writing class, most of my stories were fictional and were more often than not, written from the perspective of a certain character or characters rather than being written objectively as in news writing.  It’s been a bit of a struggle from me to go from writing very freely and experimentally back to following ap style and keeping myself out of the story.

Something else that has been difficult for me this year has been sports writing.  It’s something I’ve never done before and it’s something that I’ve sort of accidentally stumbled into.  I was assigned the article about the varsity women’s soccer team and ended up being assigned to that article for the next three or four weeks after that.  It’s very interesting and I enjoy going to the games and learning about the game as I go but the concept of covering a soccer game was completely foreign.  I didn’t really know what information I should or shouldn’t be including and the first article was a complete disaster because I was told the wrong date and time for the game so I had to write the entire article based off of interviews with the players and the coaches instead of experiencing and writing about it firsthand.  The hardest thing for me are the game stories, which is what all of these articles on the varsity women’s soccer team are.  I want to make them so much more interesting than just the game information and I’m really struggling with that.  I’m hoping that rereading the “covering sports” section of chapter 5 in the textbook will help me work through this as the semester progresses.

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One Response to Learning Blog: Objective writing and covering sports

  1. Maxwell Inskeep says:

    I took the same creative writing class last spring, and you’re right, it is completely different than news writing and does not really benefit you terms of writing news. Before taking this beginning journalism course, I had little to no experience with news writing or any of the news elements, but after a couple weeks and reading through the textbook, there is a big difference between news writing and writing for an english class. I can easily understand how frustrating it is from writing freely and now having to write structurally and precise.

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