JOURNALISM WITH LISA BAUMANN...
BY: TYLER KORBY
Duluth Media Project
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
CLOQUET, Minn. – For Lisa Baumann, editing the Cloquet Pine Journal weekly newspaper is more than just a process – it’s her life.
And she absolutely loves it.
Baumann, who has been the editor at the Pine Journal since January of 2007, has had other journalism experiences in the past, but as of right now, she couldn’t be any happier with where she is at.
I took a trip to the Pine Journal, gathered some photos and simply caught up with Baumann to get a glimpse at her career, the Pine Journal and her thoughts on the world of journalism.
Q & A INTERVIEW WITH LISA...
Tyler: "What skills are required to do this job?"
Lisa: "Clear knowledge of journalism and what makes news for the Pine Journal. Writing, editing, photography, proofing, eye for design and layout, headline writing, cut line writing, Web site editing are also great skills. Engaging the public through letters to the editor, online comments and other submitted materials, maintaining relationships with host of freelance writers and photographers are other skills that are also useful to have."
Tyler: "How did you get the job you are doing?"
Lisa: "I applied for my current position in January 2007 after freelancing for three years as a writer and photographer working mainly for a Twin-Cities based hospital. I had previous reporting and photography experience at a newspaper in Montana prior to that."
Tyler: "What is a typical day like for the Pine Journal?"
Lisa: "A typical day involves checking two e-mail accounts, in-basket of mail and faxes and phone messages. Everything coming in has to be dealt with questions and determining which items warrant printing in the newspaper and/or online. I’m responsible for keeping the Web site up to date and adding material daily while working on stories for the weekly print version of the paper. I do phone and in-person interviews, shoot photographs, gather cut line information, write stories, cut lines and editorials. I assign stories to sports reporters and other freelancers including photographers. I edit their work and determine what will ultimately end up in the print version and where it will end up. I also work in tandem with our publisher/reporter, production manager and copy editor/business manager."
Tyler: "What multimedia tools do you use, such as Facebook, Twitter, video, etc?"
Lisa: "I use Facebook and have also started a newspaper blog and Twitter account that I haven’t found time to update yet. Work in progress."
Tyler: "What role does the reader/audience play in your work?"
Lisa: "Our readers are our reason for existence and every one of them is important to us. We constantly work to develop positive relationships with readers and contributors and encourage feedback of any kind. Even when it’s negative feedback, it’s a chance to learn something and do a better job."
Tyler: "How important are editing/grammar skills in what you do?"
Lisa: "Editing and grammar are extremely important as credibility is the name of our game. We make every effort to be as accurate as possible. That said, mistakes occur and we cringe at every last one."
Tyler: "What news skills do you need to learn?"
Lisa: "Important news skills include solid news judgment, accuracy, willingness to ask tough questions, time management, ability to juggle several projects at once and shift gears for breaking news or the reader who drops by to vent on a topic."
Tyler: "What advice do you have for people interested in doing what you have done?"
Lisa: "Be willing to constantly learn and adapt. This business is at an exciting point where being willing to learn as it evolves will assure success. It’s not just about writing and photography anymore, it also includes everything from video to blogs to social networking to whatever comes next."
Tyler: "What plans do you have for the future?"
Lisa: "I plan to adapt and continue to learn so I can continue to provide news and information in whatever platform works best."
Tyler: "What work have you done that you are proud of?"
Lisa: "Some of the recent work I’ve done and am proud of includes our coverage of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed gas station in Cloquet. We instigated a 50-year anniversary celebration, which culminated with a community event, architect symposium and grant money secured for renovation. I also worked on several teen suicide articles that were tough but important in creating awareness of the problem in Carlton County."
Tyler: "How do you think new media has changed journalism and your work?"
Lisa: "New media has changed the weekly papers tremendously. Instead of merely printing once per week, we have the capability of daily papers and more with instant access to a web audience. As our Web audience is still mostly separate from print, we’ve more than doubled our readership with things such as Facebook, etc. I can find sources in a far more efficient manner as well as find out news tips posted there."
SLIDESHOW OF LISA'S TYPICAL DAY AT THE PINE JOURNAL...