Lessons from production night


For the final editorial of the year, the production team would like to present what we’ve learned over many a Wednesday night spent in the Dungeon — our final project, if you will. Turns out putting a bunch of student journalists in a room with no windows until the wee hours of the morning produces not only a weekly newspaper, but a lot of life lessons.

Give everything a theme. Everything is more fun with a theme. Work meetings, dinner with friends, perhaps even a newspaper production night. Fighting with Adobe InDesign is infinitely more enjoyable while wearing a cowboy hat or experiencing perpetual fight-or-flight responses as you await four Romans to encircle and kill you by chanting “stab, stab, stab.” The Ides of March was a fun one.

Sometimes you just need to jump in the fountain. Or be thrown in, whichever comes first. Whether it’s your birthday or not, there’s a free waterpark right in the middle of campus to take advantage of. You might have witnessed various Trinitonian editors in the fountain this year searching for the Central Egg or participating in an act of ultimate betrayal (again, the Ides of March was fun). Think of us next time you pass Miller Fountain. Come on. Just a little dip.

Resisting delirium is futile. Sleep deprivation is not fun and should be avoided at all costs, but it’s unfortunately part of a journalist’s lifestyle. There’s a time of night when half of us have the zoomies and half of us are in that almost drunken liminal space between being awake and asleep. Instead of forcing work when our brains want to do otherwise, it can be more helpful to get up and dance or to take a nap. If you too get the zoomies late at night, we recommend listening to “Pig Island” by Scott Bakula. And if you need to be revived, any Silly Song with Larry from “Veggie Tales” should do the trick.

Listen to other people. Headlines, captions and page layouts are some of the most difficult but important things on a newspaper page, and we spend a lot of time staring at the computer trying to figure it out. However, the best ideas come via group discussion, and often from someone you wouldn’t have thought to ask. Everybody always has something to offer.

Student journalism actually really matters. Of course, being on the Trinitonian, we “know” that. But, like everyone, we get insecure and wonder if our long nights spent nitpicking every word on a page is worth it. That is, until news breaks and the coverage trends on our website. Or we receive a guest column in response to last week’s issue. Or we see tables in Coates working together on the crossword puzzle. Again and again, it clicks into place, and we’re reminded that student press is essential to the health of a college community.
The seniors on our staff would like to extend a thank you to the Trinitonian readership and to wish the best of luck to next year’s editors. We can’t wait to see what lessons you learn.