Decisions, Decisions ….

November 21, 2008 at 10:02 am Leave a comment

We work on each issue of The Penn Stater from back to front. That is to say, we send sections like Class Notes, Obituaries, and Parting Shot out to our pre-press first, and then turn our attention to editing the feature well and the sections that land in the early pages of the magazine. We want those early sections (Pulse and Sports, for instance) to be as timely as possible, so they are often the last sections we pull together as the latest news, research, and sports items find their way to our desks.

We’re at that stage now, and as the editor-in-charge of our Pulse section, I begin an internal debate. There are only so many pages to this section, and I have to decide what to include, what to hold for a future issue, and what to forgo completely. It’s all about mastering the art of the perfect mix—a little bit of humor, some newsy items, some fun lists of the latest trends on campus. And sometimes it’s just a matter of space and timeliness. For instance, do I cover the near-riots that happened in downtown State College after the Nittany Lion win against Ohio State? Or will that story be old news by the time readers get the magazine in early January? Do I do a round-up of faculty-written books in this issue? Or hold off until the March/April issue? Do I have room to include a a Hip List—a fun list that documents student trends? Or is there a more news-worthy story that takes precedence?

Sometimes, just when I think I’ve got it all figured out, a new story crops up, and I have to reshuffle the whole lot. And that’s okay—it’s all just part of this little game I call work.

Maureen Harmon, senior editor

Entry filed under: The Penn Stater Magazine.

And in Sports News… A Snowy View

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