Today I had the pleasure of visiting Michael Barnes, author of the exquisite blog "Out & About" and contributer to the Austin American Statesman, at the news room. Michael also happens to be my instructor for a class that I am taking -- and the reason for this blog -- Entertainment Journalism.
In the spirit of cranking out a quick, but professional blog, like I saw Michael do today. I will try to do the same myself.
The Statesman building is located on the corner of Riverside and Congress Avenue, nestled in a little hollow right by Lady Bird Lake. It is a large building, that recently underwent some remodeling, in order to make room for the giant multi-million dollar vertical printing presses that were recently installed.
The first place we visited was the newsroom, a bright room with several people, some that I recognized from their pictures in the Statesman, milling around cluttered desks. I even saw John Kelso lurking around. After I was told the logistics of the various writing departments --music over there, editorials here, food writers here, etc. -- I was led over to Michael's desk, which was very clean and organized, by the way. We proceeded to go through the heap of emails that he recieves on a daily basis. I thought my email account was out of control! He went through the emails, deleting what was spammish and writing short replies to the emails worthy of his reply.
Next, we took a tour of the building, which included the aforementioned printing press room, and culminated with Michael buying me a cup of much-needed joe. Thanks!
We went through all the class photos that were taken a couple of weeks ago to see which pictures of the class Michael would use, if and when he felt our writings were worthy of a mention on his page. I know a lot of the students, including myself, were worried about how scary the photos might look, but I thought they all looked very good, especially for a impromptu photo session.
Next, Michael quickly posted two blogs for "Out & About," one about a ballet social event with a Frank Sinatra theme, and the other about the Palm Door preview party. It was interesting to watch him post his blogs because it gave me some insight and tips on how to maintain my blog. It was also nice to see the workings of a news room from the inside, a first for me.