Better understanding the people and processes behind great work, as well as an opportunity to make a new contact in the business.

Key dates

  • Monday, Aug. 19: Launch assignment and set into groups by due date
    Sunday-Monday, Sept. 8-9: Round 1 due (Vladyslav Alforov, Helaina Hefner, Bailey Lewis, Jarrett Standridge)
    Sunday-Monday, Oct. 6-7: Round 2 due (Jana Allen, Devin Hiett, Josie Logsdon, Brooklyn Wayland)
    Sunday-Monday, Nov. 3-4: Round 3 due (Gwyneth Easley, Abby Huckelbury, Jordan Miller, Matthew Welsh)
    Sunday-Monday, Dec 1-2: Round 4 due (Abigail Hall, Katelin Hudson, Jackson Sharp, Sydney Schwichtenberg)

The assignment

You will research and interview one of your favorite writers to understand the story behind a great story.

Due by 5 p.m. Sunday before your day: A post to our WordPress site directing us to the piece in question, and highlights of your conversation, including the writer’s path to his or her current job, the backstory to the piece, how and why he or she elected to write it that way and any other key takeaways that could apply to our work in this course.

In class Monday: Each student will lead an approximately 15-minute discussion on his or her piece.

Rubric (250 points total)

  • Interview and write-up | 125 points (50 percent)
    • Reached reporter of feature story and interviewed him or her in significant depth
    • Asked compelling and probing questions that unearthed challenges of the particular story as well as the reporter’s writing process
    • Asked questions about any reactions to the story from sources or public
    • Write-up is a minimum of 500 words
  • Presentation and discussion | 125 points (50 percent)
    • Leads a 15-minute recap of the story, its backstory and key takeaways that could apply to our work
    • Covers the reporter’s career experience and advice
  • Deductions
    • Fact errors: -50 percent
    • Miss Sunday night deadline: -Letter grade
    • Spelling: -10 points
    • Grammar, punctuation, AP style: -1 point each

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