Thursday, August 31, 2006

Hey! Hey, That Was Me! Didja See It? Didja?

"One of the great things about being a copy editor is freedom from the vulgar desire for public recognition." -- Unknown copy editor

So true. There is something to be said for a quiet smile to oneself on Sunday morning, watching people sit with coffee and rolls reading one's front page. Or a heads-up passed along to one's partner while tumbling into bed: "I wrote a kickass headline tonight; you'll have to take a look tomorrow."

I realized yesterday, however, that all decorum goes flying out the window when the 1A that one worked on had a huge scandalous story about a city official and an affair and conflicts of interest, and the TV news, because they're behind on the story, makes the newspaper's treatment of it their news, and provide several shots of the front page as part of their coverage.

Hey, everybody! Look! On the screen! I wrote that headline! And did the layout! And put the photo right there! And where it said "exclusive"? That was my idea to include it! And didja see the stand-alone photo below it? That had a GREAT hed! It was awesome! That was my front page! Mine! Didja see it? Didja? HUH?

What was fun is that I didn't really have to do that (I just did it in my head) -- everyone congratulated me, which is what those on the copy desk do for colleagues whose work shows up on TV. Mass media is a weird thing.

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