The View From Here

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And that’s it. Semester’s over. This is the last issue that’s hitting the stands until fall. That’s given us a lot of things to think about over here, and not just in terms of news.

We have done our best in picking out a healthy choice of stories to end on – stories that will, hopefully, have enough of a shelf life that you’ll still be interested in reading them by the end of summer.

Interestingly, instead of not having enough, we ended up with way too many stories. Way too many for twelve pages, in fact. And, as I discovered at the end of last semester, trying to crunch too much content into too small a space causes more problems than it solves.

The plan was to end the semester with a sixteen-pager and go out with a bang. Of course, no plan survives contact with the enemy – in this case, the enemy being the plan itself – and we’re going out on twelve pages. I’m still happy with that, but the sixteen-pager would have been nice.

Speaking of going out with a bang, a lot of our staff members are most likely moving on to bigger and better things after this. Yours truly will probably be back next semester, and there must be some masochistic side of me I don’t fully understand yet, because it’s looking like I’m going to be running for EIC again.

Other than that, though, we’re going to be sorely missing a lot of our senior staff. It’s a shame, because I’ve had great fun this semester, even through the stress, migraines, and layout.

I started the semester with only a handful of people who’d had experience working in the newsroom. That gave me the dual challenge of helping them learn how to produce a newspaper, but also teaching myself to be in charge.

It seemed insurmountable at the time, but somehow we pulled it off, and at the end of the semester we’ve turned ourselves into a solid newsroom team.

I tend to have trouble letting go of responsibility. Call me a control freak, but I have a firm belief in the saying “if you want something done right, do it yourself.” Part of me is always worried that the instant I let someone else do something, they’re going to screw it up unless I hover over them and micromanage – which is no better than just doing it myself.

I’m glad, however, that I learned to let go of that over the course of the semester. It’s a great thing to have people I can rely on to get things done, and right now there’s a newsroom full of those kind of people.

It’s going to be tough to let a lot of those people go and start all over next semester, but I guess that’s how it goes.

There’s an upside, though. I mentioned earlier in the semester that having less people used to “the old way” makes it easier to make changes, and that holds doubly true for this coming semester.

I played around with workflow a lot this semester, trying to fine-tune when articles should be completed, how they should be submitted, and other things like that. I’m still not happy with the way some of it works, but up until now, it had been pretty deep-rooted.

It will be nice to be able to step back, overhaul things, and see what happens. With a new staff, I get the chance to do that, and I think it’s going to result in a lot of positive changes.

With that in mind, I’ll simply say enjoy the hell out of your summer, and I’ll see you all next semester.