One of the best things about having a beat, or an area in which you’re allowed to focus your reporting and writing energy, is that it enables you to understand that certain topic better than you would if you were scattered around, covering all sorts of things.
Hopefully, you get to provide readers with a level of analysis and understanding in your stories that they can’t get many other places about your topic.
CDT: Winning schools candidates face committee duty
As a journalist, you get to cover and go to a lot of things you would never go to if you didn’t get paid to go to them. Prime example for me has been the Columbia Farmers Market. Last year, when I covered the opening day of Columbia Farmers Market, I knew little about it. I didn’t understand why these people wanted to pay more for food in the middle of a parking lot when they could drive a block and purchase food at a grocery store for half the price.
But then I talked with farmers, I spoke with buyers and I now understand the value of a farmers market, all because I had to go. I did the same thing this year, attending opening day last weekend for the Columbia Daily Tribune.
CDT: Opening day a cold one
There is something about a well-done documentary that moves us like few other forms of communication. About a month ago, I covered the seventh annual True/False Film Festival in Columbia. I always left the venues shaking my head at how little I knew about some things.
For example, check out this story about Laura Poitras, the director of “The Oath.”
CDT: Picturing a better vision
On Saturday, I had the privilege of listening to Manuel Scott, a man who has endured far more than anyone I know.
Scott spoke to a group of Columbia teenagers about determining your own fate, not letting yourself become a victim of what you have been given or of how your parents have raised you. He was a dynamic speaker, somehow finding laughter in between talking about how his friend was strangled with guitar wire or how his stepdad was an alcoholic and beat Manuel’s mom.
It’s a story worth sharing and reading. Enjoy.
CDT: Author shares story of determination