Sunday, February 23, 2014
By Lauren Higgins
“You have to determine what’s newsworthy,” says Ross Markman, one of only three reporters for the Havre Daily News in north central Montana. Originally a Pennsylvania native, Markman made the bold move to Montana, where he found a love for covering the local news.
He had only taken one journalism class throughout his academic career and was lucky enough to secure an internship at a local newspaper. In a profile in Newswriting on Deadline, Markman states, “I think real work experience is more important. I’ve learned so much on the job.” The internship opened numerous doors and ultimately led him to the Havre Daily News.
Ross Markman can write ten or more articles per week on a tight deadline. He says the major thing good journalists need to remember is to do your homework before reporting on a specific topic or issue. Similar to Lillian Ross, a remarkable journalist for The New Yorker, Markman suggests that the more knowledge one has on a certain subject, the better the article will be. Ross demonstrated in her feature writing that it is important to really get to know the person you are writing about in order to compose the best article. It will be much harder to write a good report without any background material.
When determining how to begin a story, Markman thinks about what is considered newsworthy. “I think of issues in terms of how they affect people,” he states. It is important to find a story that will grab the public’s attention, because the more people are affected by an issue, the bigger the story will be.