Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Are Bloggers Journalists?

In this digital age a lot of people get their information and news from internet including blogs. Blogs are great to get information, but is it journalism or opinion?

It's okay if the blog is an opinon but I see so many stories on blogs that are only minutes old. What have they investigated? How true are the facts? When I write a story for a newspaper (unless it is a feature) I use two or three sources. Two if the sources both agree, and three if there is a descrepancy.

If an event is attended by the blogger and they witnessed it first hand that fine. However I caution people to be aware of where the source is getting there information.

I've noticed more than a few times, bloggers repeat other bloggers blogs. It's a competative crazy world. Getting out fast doesn't always mean it's accurate.

Don't get me wrong. I enjoy reading blogs, in particular the themed blogs. They are more like news columns and not breaking news stories.

For the record.... I know newspaper get things wrong too...

Friday, September 18, 2009

Nuts and Bolts of Writing

It has been a while since I blogged. The past few months were busy for me. I write for several publications and deadlines and summer… don't mix. Fall is here and I've vowed to write each day. So keep me at my word.

Writing is on my mind as always, it a part of me. When I was in a waiting room, I came across a piece in the AARP Magazine by Elmore Leonard (July/Aug. 2009) titled "Making It Up As I Go Along". It was fascinating reading. As writers, we often live in semi isolation when working on our stories, different thoughts cross our mind about our characters, plot, or method. I don't know about you, but I at times I wish I could turn around and ask a pro "Is it okay to do this? Or use that?" Leonard's article did it for me.

I often take pieces of people I know for my characters. I change them by giving them different occupations, different names and perhaps an added flaw or two. I was surprised that Leonard used one of his friend's real name in "Get Shorty."

If you haven't read the article, you can do so here: http://www.aarpmagazine.org/people/leonard_making_it_up.html

I look forward to hearing from you.