Reporter 101 – Write Like You Speak

I don’t know about you, but I drive a car, not a “vehicle.” The people that live in my building and my neighborhood are people who live in my building or my neighborhood, they aren’t “residents.” Well, they are “officially,” but I’ll be damned if I’m going to call them that.

There was a guy who raped a woman in my neighborhood recently. I was scared so I made sure I didn’t walk around much late at night, but I wasn’t necessarily “on edge.” Police caught him not long afterwards, but I’m pretty sure it was the NYPD that caught him, not “officials.”

Too many writers are asleep at the wheel and pick  these “go-to” phrases to use. I say “yawn.”  The best part of my job is being a wordsmith, and telling a story – but I do realize we are often on tight deadline, and have to “pull it out of our @$$.”  Still, I maintain that no one I know drives a vehicle.

One last rant – if you’re not showing me anything, then get your reporter standup out of the story. And if it’s a necessary bridge to help explain a story where there’s not a lot of video or sound to do it, then grab me with your words and your delivery. I pose that challenge (and now I better deliver, huh? 🙂

What are your pet peeves about reporters and reporting?


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Walter Ryan says:

    Why are reporters filmed on location when the story may have occurred hours before? To my novice eyes it seems silly & worthless and does not add any value to the story.

    1. dalfarone says:

      Great question. Sometimes, you go out in a live truck to cover the story and after the story happens, you edit the story in the live truck on scene because it’s the only way you’re going to get it on the air. For the other half the time, it’s up to the reporter to give you a sense of why they’re there.

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