As a contributing writer for our local daily newspaper, I’m a bit out of the loop. Unlike last year at this time, I don’t have a desk in the middle of a busy newsroom, I miss all those fun company events and competitions, and I’m no longer privy to the buzz of the business.
There are other negatives, too. It’s hard setting up a photo shoot when I can’t see the photographers’ schedules and emails to and from my editor can become voluminous at times. But all in all, writing from my home office suits me well. I seem to function better even as an independent than if I were back being a more integral part of things; especially with all the mothering needs still before me.
Nevertheless, I am still part of things. My writing appears alongside those with whom I used to hang on a daily basis, even though I no longer see them at the pop machine every morning. This became apparent to me this weekend when I opened the Sunday paper and learned The Forum has won an impressive inaugural award for being “Best of the Dakotas,” out of both South and North.
I almost wasn’t expecting to find my name among the many, but indeed, there it was in the “S” section.
As I go out and about, I sometimes hear complaints about our newspaper. Every community newspaper for which I’ve worked, in fact, has been the bearer of negative comments. And yet we provide a valuable service to the community. Even news that might be unsettling to us tells us something about the people with whom we work and live. There’s much to be gotten through knowing what’s going on in one’s surroundings.
I’m happy and proud to be among the many talented people at our daily. I can attest to the fact that this is an extremely hard-working crew. The newspaper life is not easy. It can take a toll on those who work hard day in and day out to deliver the stories that help us know one another better. But we are blessed to have such a paper, locally owned and driven. Not every community does.
Congratulations, Forum. I’m proud of you and glad to be a part of the team!