Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Obama's commencement speech, -11 hours

So, I got assigned to do some reporting around Arizona State University's Sun Devil Stadium for The Arizona Republic. Too bad it was almost eleven hours before President Obama spoke.

I'm pretty pleased with my job, though. I spent about three hours wondering the stadium and campus, talking to anyone who looked remotely interesting, which turned into quite a few people. I would then call in to the newsroom with the gathered material and quotes. Not to be too self-congratulatory, but I feel it was a bit of an accomplishment to milk as much story out of the pre-Obama set up as I did. AND my name held on to the byline spot for most of the day. Of course, I was eventually bumped off by the full-time, staff reporters, but it was still good to contribute. My name is still at the end.

I've gotten pretty good at interviewing -- particularly impromptu, unanticipated interviews. The confidence and ability to walk up to someone on the street and politely interrogate them until I get the material I need has really boosted my reporting. Even my editor commented, "There was nothing going on, but Channing turned it into something."

I'm pretty satisfied with that one.

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