Inside the Spirit’s North Charles Street office, Tuesdays are a day like no other. Every workday has its set of tasks and its own rhythm, but Tuesdays start early and operate with a straight-forward focus: It’s deadline day and that brings stories, headlines and photo captions to be written, copy to be edited, photos to be found and cropped (sometimes even taken), pages to be designed and then all our work checked and double-checked. No one leaves till the paper is on its way to the printer.
So intent are we about this goal, it’s easy to lose track of the fact that most of our readers, advertisers, news sources – even many of our contributors – don’t look at Tuesdays the way we do.
Last Tuesday, for instance, we were working on several last-minute stories, including a local followup to the tragic explosions at the Boston Marathon finish line. Urgent “get in touch ASAP” messages had gone out to Laura Bergmann and Dr. Mark Cucuzzella, Jefferson County residents who’d finished the race before the attacks, but both were traveling back from Massachusetts and out of contact until long after our deadline had passed.
The same thing happened with Mark Peters, another local runner and race organizer whose plans to take part in the 2013 Boston Marathon had recently gotten scrubbed. We called, but by the time he was able to get a break from work and get back in touch, the story was complete, on the page and headed for the presses.
Sometimes readers send in a terrific, timely letter to the editor but it arrives Tuesday afternoon – and the editorial page already has been done. Other times, readers call in with story suggestions and wonder why they might not expect to see a story in the same week’s edition.
We do welcome feedback and story ideas from our readers – especially on Wednesdays when deadlines are behind us and we’re starting to craft how to make the following week’s edition as interesting and helpful as we can. We look forward to hearing from you.
– Robert Snyder