Newspaper Writing

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I’m doing a series of articles on Star Wars for the Dayton Daily News; the first one is here (there’s registration required; I suggest bugmenot), and there will be a couple more leading up to the release of Revenge of the Sith next Thursday. This one talks about the various Star Wars controversies, from Ewoks to Jar-Jar, and I’m pleased with the results, although I’m sad my reference to the Endor Holocaust didn’t make it through the editing for space. That’s life in the newspaper biz. The art for the story takes up the top two thirds of the front page of the Life section. Groovy.

As much as I’m now pretty much barnacled into the online writing lifestyle, I have to say that I still really enjoy seeing my writing in the local newspaper. I’m not one of those people who thinks local newspapers are going the way of the dodo; I think online news will kill off a lot of bad newspapers — the pointless ones that just run wire copy and don’t serve as anything more than a carrier for the local supermarket ads — and since bad newspapering offends me, I’m not exactly going to shed a tear about that. But I think smart, locally-engaged newspapers will always remain in one form or another because they quite simply fill a need for their community, and speaking as a writer I like to keep a hand in that.

And I’d still love to have another newspaper column, too; much of that urge has been subsumed or obviated my the Whatever, but I still love the idea of raising a ruckus on a local, concentrated level. If the Daily News ever asked me to write one, I wouldn’t think twice about it before saying yes; some part of my brain still sees that as the symbol of arriving as a writer. I think I’ll drop a hint to them the next time I’m down there.

Whether or not that ever happens, it’s still a kick to open the paper and see my byline. Once a newspaperman, always a newspaperman.

18 thoughts on “Newspaper Writing

  1. Good article on Star Wars; I was 4 when “Jedi” came out, so I never hated the Ewoks, but I can see why some would. The rest I agree on.

    Darke County? Heheheheh.

    Does Dayton have a games columnist? It seems like papers are picking up that sort of thing more and more.

  2. Does Dayton have a games columnist?

    More importantly, do they have a proofreader? Maybe if they had taken out the double words they might not have needed to edit out the Endor Holocaust…

  3. I hail from Fairborn, and it’s always been a running thing in my family to point out any and all egregious grammatical or editorial malfeasance in either DDN or the Fairborn Daily Herald. Downright awful at times. :-/

  4. The plotlines that your pointing out happen to be, like, the major pieces to a movie. It’s like saying: “The movies good but, you know the love scene takes up half of it and it sucks so when are you going to check out the major franchise.”

    I haven’t seen a decent Space Opera since Dune and wish they would extend some of Asimov’s work beyond IRobot to rekindle the genere.

    ‘The Lord of the Rings’ is really the best series I have ever had the pleasure of, after the first movie. I will be seeing the other two this week. I just couldn’t believe it. I love those guys!

    Also, I am a massive fan of the first 3 SWs movies back in the 70′s and think that’s where Lucas should have stopped to avoid all of this nonsense.

    More people should have been online in the 90′s to avoid all of this Media and Newspaper treachery The compueter cleans up all of that. That’s WHAT tech does.

  5. Yikes, what is with all this seriousness?

    Even when I saw the trailer for the original in December and waited impatiently until it finally came out I knew it was just a feel-good movie.

    I mean, c’mon, that’s what we needed then and that’s why it was so popular.

    It is not a religion.

  6. Lucas on Iraq war, ‘Star Wars’

    http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/Movies/05/16/cannes.starwars/index.html

    ::: Headline :::

    The Star Wars faithful save ‘The World’ from the evil American Dictatorship to prevent a scary war. Captain George Lucas boldly proclaims “Any war is a Scary War, and any who pursue it, on our side of the fence of course, are scary and therefore condemned”

    The everyday American is NOW the mortal enemy of the followers of the ‘Light’ side of the force. One ‘follower’(not leader) was quoted as raising a stirring squeel: “Go get em, some gibberish, “Down with America, Star Wars forever-Amen”; that with a loud fart and Mom calling him/her, hard to tell, up to din din for the next parental inquisition and reprogramming about the days events!

    What’s next???

    No-one knows, of course!
    Captain George Lucas will discuss all the heavy thought stuff, as the faithful call it, with each follower’s ‘Parental Overseeing Unit’ to know what next to DO next(otherwise it’s too scary). Until then they will eat candies and obtain more of Captain George Lucas’ goodies from the P’s as well as watch allot of television to get more brainwashed by Hollywood.

    What else is new?

    Oh, Microsoft just announced the X-Box 2! And also there are allot of soldiers fighting and dying for us in some strange place over yonder.

    The faithful say: “Sounds scary to me. I don’t like scary stuff so automatically it’s bad. Captain George Lucas orders are: “Kill scary loud stuff that’s not contained within a safe ergonomic entertainment appliance with Lucasarts membership, of course.” Father Cpt. Lucas roars again with a red sweaty face: ”I and my fans are scary, but it’s a ‘Lucasarts verified’ scary, so, I’m confused now”

    Sounds like allot of twisted movies about people wanting to make things less ‘scary’ for themselves or their minions to me. Check out “The Twilight Zone the movie” and the kid episode.

    Comments:

    We all want to go out in the World and stop scary things in the most safest way. But we actually have to go into the world to do this.

  7. Lucas on Iraq war, ‘Star Wars’

    http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/Movies/05/16/cannes.starwars/index.html

    ::: Headline :::

    The Star Wars faithful save ‘The World’ from the evil American Dictatorship to prevent a scary war. Captain George Lucas boldly proclaims “Any war is a Scary War, and any who pursue it, on our side of the fence of course, are scary and therefore condemned”

    The everyday American is NOW the mortal enemy of the followers of the ‘Light’ side of the force. One ‘follower’(not leader) was quoted as raising a stirring comment: “Go get em, some gibberish, “Down with America, Star Wars forever-Amen”; that with a loud fart and Mom calling him/her, hard to tell, up to din din for the next parental inquisition and reprogramming about the days events!

    What’s next???

    No-one knows, of course(not the leaders)!

    Father Captain George Lucas will discuss all the heavy thought stuff, as the faithful call it, with each follower’s ‘Parental Overseeing Unit’ to know what next to do (otherwise it’s too scary, whoosh). Until then they will eat candies and obtain more of Captain George Lucas’ goodies from the P’s as well as watch allot of television to get more brainwashed by Hollywood.

    What else is new?

    Oh, Microsoft just announced the X-Box 2! And also there are allot of soldiers fighting and dying for us in some strange place over yonder.

    The faithful say: “Sounds scary to me. I don’t like scary stuff so automatically it’s bad. Captain George Lucas orders are: “Kill scary loud stuff that’s not contained within a safe ergonomic entertainment appliance with Lucasarts membership, of course.” Father Captain Lucas roars with a red face: ”I and my fans are scary, but it’s a ‘Lucasarts verified’ scary, so, I’m confused now”

    Sounds like allot of twisted movies about people wanting to make things less ‘scary’ for themselves or their minions to me. Check out “The Twilight Zone the movie” and the kid episode.

    Comments:

    We all want to go out in the World and stop scary things in the most safest way. But we actually have to go into the world to do this.

    I think I can safley say Lucas has ‘at least the first 3 movies’ wrong.

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