Turn on and stay on — all the time

not teaching,still THINKING … Spaghetti supper one night recently turned into a lesson relearned in how we need to be “on” all the time. The spaghetti saga starts with two cooks in the kitchen. Cook 1 boiled the water. Cook 2 added the pasta. Easy enough. But a simple meal took a nasty turn in […]

3 things to do when you make a mistake

not teaching,still THINKING … Mistakes happen. But then what? To err might be human. But to err and then not take responsibility is unacceptable. Here are some tips for handling the delicate process of correcting a mistake. Be disciplined. Know the process at your news organization for handling an error — whether you made the […]

Wash, rinse, don’t repeat

not teaching, still THINKING … An embarrassingly number of times, the following has happened to me: Go to washing machine, set all of the dials, start water, open lid — only to find not an empty washer, but instead a washer full of clean clothes, already washed, rinsed and spun. And now those clothes are […]

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 […]

This list of errors is a wake-up call

In our introduction to Strategy 28 in “Think Like an Editor” — Edit for Accuracy — we share examples of the kinds of errors that can get published when accuracy is not top of mind. Even when you’re conscientious and focused, errors could just as easily occur when your correct information gets sabotaged by auto correct. […]

May you keep proper perspective

MAY you … For the month of May, we are devoting this blog to our wishes for journalists present and future: “MAY you … “ Every day, you will find a tip, a tidbit or a top-of-mind piece of advice we hope will help you now and later On the third day of training for interns […]