Miller Charmaine

Charmaine's adventures in news writing and editing

Diary Week 7

with 2 comments

I began my day by making the suggested edits to the controlled burn story I had fixed the headline on last week. I had just looked at the headline and didn’t think to edit the already-published piece, but it did need a few corrections.

I then completed a second edit on the little-known facts on Presidents Day piece. I remember rewording a sentence that sounded strange to me. I don’t know if it was necessary, but it read better, I thought. The original was something like, “A community in Florida, Eustis, has a tradition of…” but I changed it to “The small Florida town of Eustis, for example, has a tradition of…”

Also, using the wording of a piece from the History Channel, the original copy said some Canadian provinces have “inacted” official holidays on the same weekend as Presidents Day. I changed this to enacted. There were also some spelled out versions of United States, and I always like to just use U.S.  In what I expect was an attempt to get away from the exact wording of a source, the U.S. Census Bureau, the article said there were some places, divisions and towns named after Washington. I looked it up from the Census Bureau, which said minor civil divisions instead of just divisions. After Googling the term, I thought they might not be the same thing, and I opted to play it safe and go with the longer word.

I also changed “George Fest” to “GeorgeFest” because it was listed as such on the GeorgeFest website. Although I struggled with whether the event should be in quotation marks.

At the story idea meeting, I pitched two ideas: mine and online reporter Samantha Shavell’s. Samantha was going to look into a Florida senator that was proposing legislation for legalizing medical marijuana use. For my pitch, I thought it might be interesting to see the effects of the previous cold night, which reached a low of 28 degrees, on citrus crops in the area.

TV liked both ideas. I was happy. They were going to chase down the citrus story and find out if any fruits were damaged or changed. The legislation piece, we decided, was going to take a few more days because of the trouble Samantha was having in contacting sources for that story.

I then edited In the News. I nixed the word “star” in the introduction of Mindy McCready as a country star singer. I changed a use of the word since for because. I also switched a say to said.

Next, I focused on editing Web producer Dana’s piece on Equal Access clinics in the area. It’s interesting now that I look back on it, because I did the first edit and there are now changes from later edits that I would consider errors. I listened to the raw audio to get a clear view of exactly what sources were saying, and sentences were reworded that changed the meaning slightly.

This sentence, for example: “UF College of Medicine, county programs, research and national grants and CHOICES, a health services program offered by Alachua County, help fund the clinic and provide medical help to working, uninsured residents of Alachua County.” It was earlier worded to say that CHOICES was the organization providing medical help to working, uninsured residents. That is specifically the organization’s mission. But the sentence makes it seem like all of these organizations provide those specific services.

Also, I’m noticing an add-on to the end involving a source named Sharon McCray. I thought Dana, Christina DeVarona and I had all discussed not using that source in the online write-up because the exact spelling of her last name was not given in the audio that we had, and we could not confirm it. And this quote is funky: “I like the way they was wirking with me patiently. It seems like they care. I mean it’s free.” I’m not sure if “wirking” is meant to reveal something of McCray, but that isn’t a common intentional transcription “error” like “Ya’ll” or even “Wanna”. I believe we discussed this in one of our classes. I would change wirking to working.

Those are just things I noticed now looking back at the piece. When it was first passed to me, I added a comma and a “was” in a sentence where the word was missing. I thought I made the funding sentence more concise, but that was revamped as mentioned two grafs above this. I also was unsure about the title of the CHOICES organization. That is how it appeared everywhere on its website. I just think the all-caps are strange if they aren’t an acronym for something, and the website did not allude to any acronyms.

After completing those edits, I talked to the 4201 editing students who came in around 1 p.m. I pitched my citrus story to Jenna Lyons because it had been put on the back burner by TV. She was very diligent and completed the story!


Written by charmainemiller

February 19, 2013 at 12:20 am

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are more than 90 places, minor civil divisions and counties in the U.S. named after George Washington. BAN THE DEAD CONSTRUCTION FROM YOUR VOCABULARY OK, BUT SEE MY NOTE ABOUT BOGUS TREND STORIES.
    Accountability Office report. in November. Unlike pervasive FOCUS FOCUS
    from raising water levels RISING FOCUS FOCUS
    Four specialty clinics provide services Monday through Thursday. THOSE SERVICES INCLUDE: including: dental care, physical therapy, women’s services and mental health therapy.
    UF College of Medicine, county programs, research and national grants and CHOICES, a health services program offered by Alachua County, help fund the clinic READERS CARE ABOUT TAX DOLLARS – WITH THESE KINDS OF STORIES NEED TO ANSWER THE QUESTIONS ABOUT COST OF PROGRAMS
    Farmer said this may be the last year for donations from CHOICES, because the program’s funding is slated to be completely cut by the end of the fiscal year. NO COMMA BEFORE BECAUSE – ALSO, THIS IS A STORY IN ITSELF.
    Sharon McCray went back to the clinic for a second time instead of visiting the emergency room. She said her second time attending was much better than the first. “You get one on one,” she said. “I like the way they was working with me patiently. It seems like they care. I mean it’s free.” OK, WHERE IS SHE FROM? THAT IS RELEVANT TO STORY. ALSO, STRIKES ME THAT SHE COULD BE PART OF AN ANECDOTAL LEAD AND THEN YOU COULD REWORK THE BASICALLY BORING LEAD The Equal Access Clinic, a series of student-run free health care clinics started by the University of Florida’s medical school, gives Gainesville residents who cannot afford health care access to free medical services. AS A NUT GRAPH.

    Ronald R. Rodgers

    February 24, 2013 at 9:21 am

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