In my eight months at The Evening Sun, there is a lot that I have had to get used to. Iíve started talking to people I donít know without shaking in my shoes. Iíve gotten used to using Macs instead of normal computers and even started to enjoy them. Iíve even gotten used to the constant worry that I wonít be able to find anything to write about, but one thing I havenít gotten used to is the constant critiquing of everything I write.
Iím not talking about having my fellow reporters and my editor read over my stories and make the necessary changes. I appreciate that part. The more people I have to find my typos and over abundance of commas, the better. Iím not even talking about people who call or e-mail me if they find a mistake. I appreciate that as well. Iím talking about the phone calls I receive once the story goes to print.
If I worked at a bank, I probably wouldnít have people calling me on a regular basis to go over how I handled my dayís transactions or to tell me if I gave out even numbers of each bill. As a reporter, things are different. Every time a controversial Ė and Iím using the term extremely lightly Ė topic is in the news, I receive calls from everyone with a vested interest, questioning the choices I made, the people I chose to interview and my ulterior motives for bringing the subject to light. If I interview a wide variety of people on a topic, I get calls from people who want to know why I chose those individuals. If I stick tightly to one topic and interview only those involved, I get calls asking why I didnít show both sides of the topic. Everyone is an expert and everyone has a complaint.
Donít get me wrong, as a reporter, I rely on information from people. They call when there is an event they think we should attend or if there is a story that we should look into. Iím not complaining about that. It helps me get past the Ďwhat to write aboutí worry. I just take issue with individuals, especially those with a vested interest in a topic, telling me what I should include or shouldnít include in my stories.
If something is inaccurate or portrays something in the wrong way, Iíll be the first to apologize; but I wonít apologize for doing my job and showing both sides of an issue.