Last year when former editor Charly Haley wrote her end-of-the-year column about how being an editor makes you grow up fast, I wondered what I would learn from being editor. It turns out I learned a lot.
When stories fell through last minute, I learned to improvise. When we published controversial stories, I learned how to deal with backlash. And when there was a big news story that I couldn’t cover, I learned to trust my staff. The most important lesson I learned from being editor, though, is to admit my mistakes, correct them and move on.
As the editor of a newspaper, you have to constantly strive for perfection knowing full well that you will never achieve it. You will never have a perfect issue, or perfect story for that matter. There will always be some kind of grammatical error, a misspelling or some awkward wording. And, trust me, people will be sure to point out all of those little mistakes – every week.
At the beginning of the semester, I dwelled on all those little (and sometimes big) mistakes week after week. I beat myself up mentally over every little misspelling and missed comma. At times, the stress from being an editor weighed heavy on me and caused me to have a couple “mental breakdowns.”
Fortunately, I had a great staff of dedicated workers that always had my back. Although they drove me crazy at times, I couldn’t have made it through the year without their amazing support.
So, to my staff, I say: Thank you for all the laughs and inside jokes, for listening to my much-needed vent sessions and most of all, for just being you. Each of you contributed something special to the newspaper, and together, we made a great team.
We strived for the best every week and didn’t dwell on the past. Together, we learned to recognize our mistakes, fix them if possible and move on, striving to do better next time.
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BY JASMINE MAKI