How does this coaching stuff work?

Chapter 3 in “Coaching Writers” and Tom Huang’s “Three Key  Moments” article deal with specific strategies for working with writers. What struck you as novel, revelatory or worthwhile in the readings?

For me, it’s a sentence in the “Editing Side by Side” sidebar on page 31 in “Coaching Writers”: “Failure is normal and instructive.” That sure isn’t the way this perfectionist was raised. But I like Murray’s notion that “writing is experimental. We don’t know what works until we try it.” I need to embrace this more in my writing. And in life.

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43 responses to “How does this coaching stuff work?

  1. idreamofdreaming

    Claudia Williams —
    What stuck out to me in “How to Consult with Writers” was on page 25, when the writer was struggling to find a lead and Don Fry helped him. All he had to do was ask a few simple questions, to pull as much as he could out of the writer. “Do you have any good quotes?” and “Did he say anything funny?” Its the little things like that, that make a good editor. Writers need encouragement from their editors, in order to keep going confidently. In my experience with editors, it was the kind and constructive ones who helped me produce the best stories. Criticism is still VERY necessary when it comes to editing a story (obviously), but as opposed to aggressive and harsh criticism, construction is more likely to help you produce a better story. Coaching a writer towards the end result will produce a better end result.
    On page 24 it reads, “conversation between reporter and editor leads to a shared vision of the key problems in the story.” If you both recognize and acknowledge the same issues in the story, than you are on the same page. Sometimes the editor sees a story’s flaws first, but sometimes a writer can come to the editor with the flaws. They both work as a team to produce a story the readers will be happy to read. For me, the KEY moment in the production of a story is moment #3. “you can give the reporter feedback and talk about premise, simplicity, clarity and story flow.” After this stage, the writer knows what the editor/readers needs. He can now successfully finish a story, that he can be proud of.

    • I agree with your first paragraph talking about Don Fry. Sometimes it’s the small things, like the questions you mentioned, that help get to the big parts of the story. As writers, we sometimes blank or forget that it could be the small details that can turn into the big story. Being an editor does not mean that you need to correct all their work for them, you can help them out by making them think of things they may have forgotten.

  2. The concept of “coaching” is still new to me. I have always thought of it as editing and I do not feel like I have truly been “coached” through my mistakes. I found “Coaching Writers” to have some valid points. One that stood out to me was right in the beginning on the first page. It stated, “They want editors to serve as test readers, to respond to work as readers rather than as bosses.” This sentence caught my eye because I could not agree more. Having an editor act as a reader rather than just strictly editing could potentially catch more mistakes. Reading a paper from an editors point of view and from a readers point of view are two very different things. Something else that stood out to me was at the bottom of page 23. It said, “Just because a writer hands in a story does not mean that the writer is satisfied with it. Often the writer hands in flawed work.” These two sentences are very important for not only writers but for editors as well. Sometimes deadlines can not be met and writers have to turn in what they have, knowing their work is not finished. The work they turn in usually comes back marked up or they get yelled at for what they turn in. Just because you turn in work with flaws doesn’t mean that it is finished. One may be looking for suggestions or advice on how to improve. The section on page 26 stated something that I thought was interesting: “Never trust an editor.” The concept of never trusting an editor had not crossed my mind until I read this section. It talked about editors needing to get to know their writer before they edit their work. I agree with what they were saying. Personally, I would rather have someone that I know and trust edit my work rather than someone that I do not know. Having someone you know edit for you could potentially be better because they know your writing style and what you are about. Maybe you are putting in a sense of humor or you have a certain writing style that you use that another editor might not pick up on.

    • I definitely agree with your first point. As a person who struggles to edit, I think taking on the perspective of a “test reader” is a valuable step I can take to become a better editor–after all, readers are ultimately the ones we’re trying to please. I’ve never thought about editing in this sense before, and I think it’s a great way to look at our role.

      • Plus, donning the “test reader” perspective depersonalizes that the criticism is coming from the editor. Couching revisions and suggestions as what’s best “for the reader” often makes it easier to constructively criticize – and to receive that criticism.

  3. The line that really stuck out to me was on page 24 of Coaching Writers: “The editor’s best questions are those that help the writer to discover what needs to be done next.” As the chapter says, sometimes you are working on a piece and just get stuck. It may be right away when the ideas you had laid out for your lead just don’t work, or maybe you’re not sure how to close your article. Sometimes you just need some guidance as to where to go next. I’ve noticed that even some of my favorite ideas can lead to some sticky situations in which I’m not sure where to go, or if I’m even on the right track. Having an editor who would be willing to help you figure out what you have and where to go next is great. It lets me think on my own with their questions leading the way, not only sparking some ideas for this current article, but I could ask myself these questions when I’m stuck during future articles. It lets me do the thinking for myself, and that is a nice way to do it. This method allows me to continue to tackle the project and create something I’m proud to turn in.

    In Huang’s article, it’s hard for me to pick the most important point in my mind, because all of the tips would help me in different ways. However, I would probably have to say the first point is most important. I’ve noticed having a solid start to an article helps make the rest of the story go smoothly. If you pick a topic that is way too broad, it’ll be hard to find a focus on part two. Having guidance and questions right away is the best way I believe an article can grow.

    • I totally agree with you about getting stuck. One of my challenges as a writer, is trying to keep in mind that the reader may have no knowledge of the subject matter. A lot of times the writer finds what they write makes sense, but an outside reader may be confused by the ordering of the content. An outsider editor/coach is super helpful in this situation. I think that editor’s are great at helping move along the questions, and help writer’s figure out what might be unclear to the reader.

  4. I think what stuck with me most about this chapter was this passage from pg. 26 “During the reporting: be available to the writer so the writer can solve the writer’s own problems by talking them through. Use your own experience as a resource. Let the writer use you as a test reader.” As a writer, I can definitely be insecure, and I like someone to guide me through the process. Someone that knows what I’m aiming for, and can help me identify if I am falling off track is always something I find helpful. A lot of times I find myself getting blocked into my own writing. Once something is put into words, it can be difficult for me to think outside of what has been written, but talking through these issues can usually help. A good example that applies to this, is checking over section editors budgets. Having been in their boat, I could identify what story ideas would work, which articles might be taken and where there might be challenges. Talking to the section editors and identifying these problems proactively, helped their sections in the long run.

    • I completely agree with you and the passage you picked. As a writer sometimes I feel like what I’m writing is just crap but then a teacher or peer editor comes in and helps me through the process and the problems that I am having. They serve as a great resource for a mid-article pick-me-up when you get stuck or just need some encouraging words.

      • This happens to all writers, even the good ones. We sometimes get too close to our own work and are unable to step back. Even the best writers need editors to offer fresh eyes.

    • I really like the passage that you identified as well. It’s easy as a writer to get caught up in a certain mindset and not be able to step out of it. I’ve noticed myself get trapped into a certain cycle and often it takes stepping away and getting somebody else’s fresh perspective on it for me to break that. Having somebody to bounce ideas off of and talk through issues with can often be the best way to solve problems as it forces you to vocalize your thoughts.

    • Since we are so new and fresh into the Journalism world, I 100% agree that we are insecure and need alot of help with our writing. Having a coach/editor is so helpful, because we need the validation that we are doing OK, and we don’t totally suck. An editor has the eyes that we need to have look over our shoulder, say what is OK and what is not, and then help us be happy with our end result. I always feel so happy and lucky, when my editor gives me good feedback and knows what Im trying to get at.

    • The last thing you said is key: talking “helped their sections in the long run.” An editor might not feel like conversations are worth the time, or that progress on a piece is moving along as fast as they’d like. But investing time and energy into a writer and their work (especially if you’ll be working with them often) can pay off in the long run. A student doesn’t become a pro after one lesson. Rather, coaching is a process that’s built on!

  5. Before I read Tom Huang’s article, Three Key Moments, I thought I knew most of the important criteria to fulfill as both a writer and an editor. However, I found myself taking away several important lessons that I had never really considered when I was writing or when I have edited the work of my peers. The level of involvement an editor should have throughout the writing process stuck out to me because I have always thought that editing was a process that was done at the end once a story was finished, not as a tool for writers to use to improve their reporting skills before writing their article as well as during. One of the points that made me think about how I can improve in editing the work of others was Huang’s suggestion to try to sum up the story in 2-3 sentences in order to ensure that the story remains focused and has a clear message. I tend to ramble in my writing so this point will be helpful to me in organizing my work. I also appreciated the point recommending that writers think about why they are writing an article and what they want readers to take from their article so they can be reminded of these expectations as they begin to write the story.
    In The Unnatural Act of Listening section by Paul Pohlman in Coaching Writers, I thought that his observations on page 28 on the meaning behind certain locations and positions when in a meeting with a writer was interesting because I had not previously thought of the symbolic relationship an editor can convey to a writer simply through body language and proximity. The suggestion to let the writer speak more than the editor when discussing an article was also surprising to me because I used to think that the editor simply corrected the writer’s work and then returned it to the writer with suggestions instead of letting the writer work through her mistakes by herself. While this is part of the coaching process, it still surprised me that the editor would relinquish power over the writer in order collaborate with her on an article and to help her improve future work as well as the present article. In the Editing Side by Side section, Donald Murray’s suggestion to fool around with language is something I have previously had trouble with because I tend to approach my writing in a really formal tone. Acquired through years of writing research papers and formal essays and very little assignments that allowed me to take linguistic liberties with my writing, this is a point that I will need to work on in the future in order to make my writing more entertaining to readers.

    • One part of your response that I noticed in my own writing is the fact that I tend to use a formal tone in most settings. Some of the campus work I’ve done outside of class has helped me step beyond that tone a bit, but that’s something I would really like to work on. I also agree with the portion you included about rambling from Huang’s suggestion. Sometimes my ideas get out of hand and end up all over the place, so taking the idea back to its center lets me keep on track with where the story was supposed to go in the first place.

  6. As I read through the two pieces, I kept coming back to one of the things my debate coach told me on one of the first days of class: “Why should I care?” I didn’t think about that question very much in my early days of debate because I thought, “I’m great at arguing with people, and that’s what matters!” How wrong I was. By the time I was a senior, though, I was shaping my cases around that question- “Why should I care?”- and bringing my arguments down to a personal level with the judge. Needless to say, I was much more successful after I began to make the judges care about my case.

    I bring this up because I feel like every question suggested in both “Coaching Writers” and Huang’s piece can be seen, at some level, as a reflection of “Why should I care?”: “What’s important to this story? How does this relate to the readers?” Even the more technical questions about structure and syntax help decide whether or not the reader will *continue* to care after being pulled in.

    One quote that really stood out to me was in Chapter 3, page 23: “The writer may not know what he knows.” How weird does that sound? One would think that the reporter has a firm grasp on a story, given that he just went to investigate it. Surely he knows what he knows! But sometimes, the writer isn’t aware of what it is that he knows that the reader cares about. It’s the coaching process that helps the writer understand what he knows that the reader cares about.

    • At first I was kind of confused on the quote on page 23 too, but then I thought back to when I’ve been discussing a story I’m writing with someone and I remember a detail I hadn’t thought was relevant before. Sometimes just having another person to go through the details of a story with me can help me realize what will be interesting to readers and what’s just background information.

  7. As a former high school newspaper editor-in-chief, one of my biggest journalism pet peeves is when writers hand me a story and tell me, “It sucks,” or “It’s stupid.” Normally, I would get upset. I don’t understand why a reporter would turn in a story to me that they didn’t believe was their best quality work.

    On page 24 of Coaching Writers, the author notes that he has gone through the same thing. However, instead of getting angry, he uses these negative comments to help the reporters improve their stories and their writing overall. The quote that stuck out most to me was, “The editor’s best questions are those that help the writer to discover what needs to be done next.” Instead of taking my red pen to the “stupid” or “sucky” story, I’ve learned that I should instead ask writers what they’re struggling with. My favorite examples of questions from the book were, “How are you feeling about this?” and “What should I be looking for?” I believe forcing the writer to pinpoint—and then voice—specific concerns about their draft saves the editor valuable time and helps the writer learn about weaknesses they need to improve.

    • I am sorry to say but sometimes I have been that writer who comes in and says this is stupid and it sucks but then my editor would step in and help me through it just like you bring up from the text. I think it truly does help us writers when an editor comes at our work with that mindset rather than the ‘red pen’ mindset. In the end, it does make me take another look and say you know what this is a good article and I did do a good job!

    • I agree with a lot of the great points that you made in your discussion. I am also sorry to say that in high school I too was sometimes the writer that would hand in a story thinking it sucked/was stupid. Unfortunately, I didn’t really have an editor that was into “coaching.” Instead, it was more of let me fix this story as soon, and as fast as I can. Which I think is apart of why I would think that my story sucked, or was stupid. I wasn’t very confident in my writing, and I think having an editor be more of a “coacher,” and asking me questions about my story would have been a lot more helpful.

    • I like the portion you chose in the Coaching Writers book as well. Similar to what I said in my own post, sometimes we just need that little push in the right direction to make the article start to develop into something more when we’re stuck. I agree with the last sentence you posted. Sometimes we feel so overwhelmed in our heads when we think about what we have to do, so putting our struggles out in words to an editor may make us realize that we have more than we think. This makes it easier on the editor, and it makes it easier for us as writers to start doing some of the problem solving on our own.

    • I know from my experience, that when I turn a story into an editor and say it sucks is because I want them to know I think that. So they dont read it and think the same thing, then tell me everything I did wrong. Because then I feel stupid. Instead of doing that, I should have turned in a story and said “I NEED HELP.” Simple as that. Editors are there to help, so we as new writers need to allow that. From there, we can work as a team and pull and push until we find an awesome story to send out. One that we are both proud of!

  8. In Coaching Writers, I was really intrigued by the section on “The Unnatural Act of Listening.” To be specific, the section on body language was really helpful. I sometimes struggle reading body language, so it’s good to see a reminder of how I should approach a person. In general, people are not reading body language as much as a result of technology.

    Before I read “3 Key Moments,” I didn’t really realize that editors help the writer prepare for the story. It makes sense, especially when I think about deadlines that both the writer and editor face.

    • I found the section on body language interesting, too–especially the part about where editors sit. Looking back, I’ve definitely felt more comfortable around editors who sit next to me during the editing process, as opposed to those who look down on me from behind their big, scary desks. I think a writer’s unique voice and creativity can be compromised when he or she she feels intimidated by an editor. When I’m working with a writer, I don’t often pay attention to little things like body language, but now it’s clear they do make a difference.

    • The 3 key moments really stuck out to me as well. All three are such important steps in the process, especially 3. The first edit. I think that once a writer has formed a rough draft, and takes it to the editor, the two of them can then begin to pick apart and edit it, and make it awesome.

  9. The passage that intrigued me the most was in “Coaching Writers” on page 26 where it says, “As a good editor, you must prove to the writer that no evil consequences will flow from sharing work with you. By the time you get to work with a writer, that writer already has a personal history of success and failure in writing and in working with teachers and editors.” I think this is so true, especially for myself. When I would go have a teacher or peer edit my work I would feel that all they were going to say was bad stuff and that I needed to redo everything. But that is totally not the case, editors are there to help writers improve their talent and to be that ‘guiding light’ through the dark tunnel of writing. I feel that writers come in with that attitude also because of their past experiences just like “Coaching Writers” talks about. People will always pre-judge a situation based upon their past experiences and who their past teachers were. If a student had a horrible experience with one teacher they may never want to use an editor again, it can turn them off of editors in general. But if students have a good experience with editors it encourages with and the decision they made to go see that editor. I feel as editors we need to try and help writers with these hesitations and anxiety about editing. If we can show them that editors can be helpful and a great experience more writers will come to us and will eventually produce amazing work.

    • I think part of the reason we get worried about going to editors is that the very nature of the process is, well, intimidating. You’re presenting your work for someone to judge and critique. At times, if you know it’s not your best work, you *want* them to tear it to shreds. It’s a weird process, and I don’t know if it’s something I’ll ever get used to. But I guess you need to just keep thinking, in the back of your mind, that the editor is there to help and coach and guide you through the writing process.

    • No matter how long you write for and how many stories you’ve had published or praised, sharing your writing with someone is a particularly vulnerable process. If you are expecting it to get ripped to shreds but an editor you don’t have a good relationship with, you’ll second-guess yourself the entire process and it won’t be your 100% best. Every story will have it’s hiccups and if you expect each hiccup to be devastating on the editor’s desk, you won’t be able to commit to the story.

  10. Asking questions is the key to understanding because it opens up communication between the writer and the editor and that’s what I got from the chapter and the article. But one particular question stood out to me that overshadowed everything else I took away from the reading: “Why are we doing this story, and why will the reader care?” I think it is so critical to ask this question. Though it’s large and vague, without asking this how will the writer or the editor knows that they’ve got a focused story. It’s a question that should be asked at every point of the writing/editing process, because if the answer is muddled then so is the value of the story to the reader.

    • I agree with everything that you said. The question, “why are we doing this story, and why will the reader care?” Is most definitely one of the most important questions writers, and editors should be asking through out the whole process of writing. Because that’ll show what the focus is in the story, and if the question cannot be answered then the story will need to be reevaluated to figure out what that focus is.

  11. I love the idea of coaching rather than fixing, but it will definitely take some practice for me to get used to that method. I think an interesting concept that was pointed out was on page 30 when the author says to “try coaching without looking at the text.” It’s something I would have never thought to do, but it would help to avoid the initial urge to fix. Obviously, an editor will need to read through the story eventually and there may be times when it’s easier to help coach by looking at the text. However, I think that by not looking at the text it’s easier to strike up a real and honest conversation about the story and its strengths and weaknesses. In my experience sitting down to discuss a story is often more helpful because it can give you a chance to put your writing into words and sometimes makes you think about different perspectives.

    As the chapter states, it also stops the editor from wanting to take over the story which is something I often find myself doing. The other interesting thing about this idea of not reading the text, is it gives the editor the chance to ask many of the questions that are included in the “3 Key Moments” article. Before sitting down to read the story editors could have the chance to ask questions such as “What is the question driving the story?” and “What are the quotes, anecdotes, details, scenes that stand out to you?” Learning to be a good coach will take some work, but I think this is one method that could be very useful to me when editing.

    • I completely agree with you about wanting to kind of take over a story when you’re editing it. It’s hard not to take a story in your hands and mark it up immediately, but I think that talking through a story before you look at it and getting an idea of what the writer thinks of the story first would be helpful in deciding how to approach the story while you’re editing it.

    • I agree that asking questions before you even read the story can be a better way to understand it. It also gives the writer a fair chance to talk about their work, which can be nice if they’re not sure about something. These conversations at the “3 Key Moments” are so vital, but so easy to skip over as an editor. I still have to remind myself as a writer and editor to take the time to ask questions before I dive in.

  12. What stuck out to me the most in both readings were, how the editor and writer need to work together, and how having a good relationship is key in making things work smoothly. Even just asking a few simple questions can make such a major difference. For an example in chapter 3, on page 25, Don Fry helps the writer out. All he did was ask a few questions, and the writer ended up figuring it out, and everything turned out just fine. If the editor wouldn’t have taken the time to ask a few questions like that, then the story may not have gotten the best lead, and the editing process would have taken longer.
    Asking questions is key, and it helps open up communication between the editor and the writer. Which is a necessity, in my opinion. If the editor and the writer have a good relationship, then the writer will feel more comfortable coming to the editor. The writer won’t get nervous, or have negative feelings towards the editor, and will have a better feeling when receiving criticism. Also, by having the writer feel comfortable with going to the editor with questions, questions will get answered earlier on while the story is still being developed, and that will then shorten the editing process. Having the writer feel more confident in their writing is good.

    • I agree with this. In high school, I had an English teacher that scared me. I only had her for one year, but she would rip papers apart for the most random reasons, but no one in my class cared to ask why she would do this because we knew that she would get upset. In an editor/writer relationship, this is what we want to avoid. There really should be an open relationship between writer and editor, as both are needed to help make a story a success. The examples in “Coaching Writers” of the good editors made me realize how important a good editor can be in the entire writing process and how to tell if your editor wants you to succeed as much as you want to.

  13. I especially liked that Tom Huang’s article talked about the value of conversations before and after reporting. It can save a lot of energy and frustration if an editor takes the time to discuss objectives and ideas before a writer delves into an assignment. Before I worked as an editor on a student publication, this step in the process never crossed my mind. As a writer, I’d grown accustomed to getting an assignment letter and being turned loose to work. The research process goes a lot smoother when you’ve fleshed out ideas with an editor first. I’ve really found that these conversations are one of the most important parts of the entire writing process and can’t be overlooked by the editor.

    In “Coaching Writers” the quote, “The editor’s best questions are those that help the writer to discover what needs to be done next” jumped out at me. When I’m editing it’s sometimes tough to overlook the little problems after the first draft. This serves as a good reminder to be looking for the big questions. A lot of times when an editor asks the right questions, writers can sort out the smaller holes themselves.

    • I definitely agree with you. I think a lot of people underestimate how a little communication between the editor and writer can go a long way. As a writer, it’s crazy how someone asking,”So tell me what happened” can completely change my approach to the story.

    • I agree with what you said about the editor working with the writer before they begin an assignment. I’ve had experiences where I’ve been given an idea and after I’ve written and shown it to the editor we find that we had different angles for the story. Coaching the writer before they even begin writing is a great way to make sure both the writer and editor are on the same page and is likely to save both time in the end.

  14. I found the motivational interviewing that editors must possess towards writers worthwhile in the readings. I was struck by the quote, “Editors may need the same kind of telephone training received by suicide hotline counselors!” I have undergone similar training to be a hotline advocate, and the training is pretty rigorous. I thought it was interesting that “Coaching Writers” makes that point because in reality many editors are unfamiliar with the type of dialogue, body language, and skill that is needed in order to communicate with people in that way. After practicing motivational interviewing techniques in my personal experiences, I think more can be done to “train” future editors how to communicate more effectively with writers.
    As a writer, I understand how someone asking a few questions before an article can help to better a story. I also understand how the fear of asking for help or needing help can easily make you feel inadequate or stupid. Previously, I didn’t really give much thought on how important an editor can be in shaping a writer’s skill or their future work ethic.
    I still feel unexperienced on other jobs in the news room, but these readings really did get me thinking on the role of the editor and how the roles and practices of the news room are changing.

  15. I thought a big takeaway from both articles is that the editor needs to work more alongside the writer than above them. They are there to offer rough critique and edits, but even more so they are there to make sure the writer knows what their goals are, and how to achieve them. Having a good, working relationship between the two is more vital than I think many people realize.

    I like the point that Huang makes when he says, “For the editor, coaching means engaging the writer in an ongoing conversation about the story, from the conception of the idea to the final edit. The more the editor can invest time and thought in this conversation, the less work she’ll likely face in “fixing” the story when it comes in.” I think that sums up every point he tries to make in saying that that relationship is what makes a good writing piece work.

    From the “Coaching Writers” chapter, the biggest thing I got out of that was “As a good editor, you must prove to the writer that no evil consequences will flow from sharing work with you.” This just further backs up the statement that editors and writers need to be, on a certain level, friends. You won’t get quality work from a writer who is too afraid of your scrutiny, or doesn’t know how to respond to or fix what you ask them to.

    • I absolutely agree that if the writer and editor have a good working relationship it’s more likely that the final product will be something both are happy with. I think when both are working together the writer is more likely to feel willing to collaborate with the writer and the editor is less likely to want to simply take over the story.

  16. Honestly, I’ve never had an editor get mad a me or over-edit my writing, but also I’ve never turned in a piece that I wasn’t happy with and had an editor just take it for what it was. I think I’ve been really lucky for that. Both of these types of editing were discussed in “Coaching Writers”.

    Many times I’ve had a story that I was just stuck on, but was too afraid to bring up dialogue about it with my editor. Instead of running with it or berating me for writing a terrible piece, they said something along the lines of “Are you completely happy with this? If not, what do you think is lacking?” or “Maybe this ending could be beefed up. Do you have any good quotes? Did anything about the story really stick out to you?” I appreciate an editor opening up dialogue like that. It draws me in, makes me feel comfortable talking about it and helps me see elements of the story that I was blind to before.

    I’ve been lucky enough to have the “coach” editor described in these readings and I’ve very thankful for that. However, I think that these readings will help me deal with the bad situations when I find myself on the writing side or editing side of things. I hope that as an editor, I can be a “coach” and not just an editor.

  17. So, I’ve had a ton of technical difficulties with this website today for some reason and it wouldn’t let me log in so here’s take 2:

    I can definately understand the frustation of miscommunication. A lot of times, we hear it from the writers. “Oh, they didn’t turn this in the right way/ at the right time” or “This isn’t a good enough quote” but after reading this article, it’s makes me think of all the times as a writer that I was frustrated with an editor.

    Communication is a two-way street. Simple errors, misdirection of a story, an examination of the sources, and other generally harsh criticisms that needed to be edited out later could be avoided early on. The line that struck out to me the most of “Consulting with Reporters” was on pg 30 when it says “A simple ‘How’s it going?’ may envoke useful information from writers.” This could do a lot of prevent missed deadlines, aggrivation and stress all but just talking.

    Especially in an age where a lot of the writing/editing process is done virtually through email, editors can’t just disappear after the inital brainstorming news budget goes out. Just like a coach can’t leave after the tip-off and come back at the final buzzer, expecting a victory.

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