Author Archive

Read, read, read. Did we say read?

Time to read. Wish I had more of it. If that were the case, I might have finished reading three special books by now. “Of Course You Can Have Ice Cream for Breakfast! A Journalist’s Uncommon Memoir” by Ron Cohen. Just published. Ron is an award-winning journalist for more than 40 years who led coverage […]

Instant recall is a tricky undertaking

In a visual exercise the other day to demonstrate how editors must be mindful of a variety of issues in a story, I donned two different earrings (usually, I wear none); a pin with three snowmen (it’s September); my jacket backward (on only one arm) and a sock (on my other arm). When students returned […]

Context can enhance even a solid story

BIG numbers. How can journalists convey how big? A good example is found in the work of Manny Fernandez of The New York Times, whose story about Houston after Hurricane Harvey carries the headline: “Over 21 Miles of Highway, Snapshots of a Resilient Houston.” How can we visualize the size of Houston? Fernandez shows us […]

Gatorade for inspiration? Give it a try

Gatorade. Two TV commercials have become favorites in the memorable way they urge us to “rehydrate, replenish and refuel.” “One and Only” has this kicker: “So if you want to be the one and only, and not just one of many, give that extra ounce. It might just be the one that all the others […]

Think twice about a thankless job

Thankless jobs. Have one? This question came to me today as I was leaving what I’ll generically describe as a lawn mower retail and service store. I was there on a mission to pick up newly sharpened lawn mower blades. They were not ready, so I chose to wait while they were sharpened — about […]

Hard worker? No thank you

Perfection. Attainable? Desirable? It depends. Consider the following perspectives. Then see what you think. No one’s perfect. True enough. When we use this standard to assess others, we can safely overlook reasonable shortcomings in favor of realistic expectations. But when we use this phrase to explain away our own inadequacies, we risk being perceived as […]