You guys. Whew. Work lately has been busy. I like it that way - the days go by faster, and it's rewarding to accomplish goals and get articles written - but it's tiring. Like, really tiring.
And one of the biggest headaches lately was my main October story: the automotive feature (read it here), which also happened to be the cover story.
Maybe the best way to explain it is to teach you what I learned while writing this article:
1 // Never, ever, ever let a source look at the article before it's printed. If, for some reason, you find yourself interviewed for a magazine, newspaper, etc., you do not get to review the writer's story before it's published. You really don't get to make changes. Especially if your interviewer can, like me, type 120 words a minute and capture every. single. damn. thing. you say. Verbatim. If you don't like a quote, it's because you said it wrong, not because I wrote it down wrong. The next time someone tries to pull the "I need to see the article before it's printed" stunt, I'm going to immediately axe them from my piece and find a new source. The end.
2 // Try to determine the nationality of the person you're interviewing before you do a telephone interview. I apparently have a horrible ear for languages (you'd think living in another country for six months would have taught me this, but apparently not). One of the guys I interviewed was German, and holy mother of incomprehensibility. He spoke English, but I barely understood anything. It was awful. I wound up having to go out to his office in Duncan one day to interview him in person, which did go better, although I still had to ask him to repeat himself a couple of times. Basically, unless you're speaking American English with a southern accent, I can't understand you. Literally.
3 // Give photographers a lot of damn direction. Apparently, "We need a cover photo of this automotive supplier. It needs to be vertical, and a very arresting image," isn't direction enough. I can take my own photos pretty well, but trying to tell someone else how to take a newsworthy photo for a publication? Yeah, no.
Writing-wise, it was a rough month, but it all gets on paper in the end. So enjoy!