Working at a newspaper is not the easiest job in the world. In my 12 years, I have experienced long hours, low pay, and few days off. So it is true that a reporter does their job for the love of helping others and not for the money. Newspaper reporters and editors encounter many challenges. One of those challenges is making others understand how to easily submit articles and photographs for the publication.
My tips for those needing to submit content are as follows:
1. Email photographs as a jpeg with at least 300 pixels and do not edit or crop the picture before sending.
So many times we received photographs that are too small, cropped, or even switched from color to black and white. Do not do this. The submitter does not know how the editor will choose to run the photo and at some papers it is possible the photo could go color.
2. Do not embed photos and articles in PDFs.
Many times an organization will layout the photos and articles the way they think it should be printed, PDF the document and email it. Do not do this unless you are building an ad. Most newspapers are not going to allow you dictate how and where the article is placed.
3. Do not include advertising in a press release.
Many schools, businesses or other entities will send a press release about an event or activity and at the end include a fact about their organization. This is an ad and not an article and many newspapers will delete this information.
4. Submit your content to the appropriate email.
Most newspapers have an email address for each sections such as sports, religion, business and many others.
If you know your information is a sports piece then send it to sports. When you send your content to the wrong email or to a person because you know them personally you risk that information not getting to its destination. i have experienced this with our local playhouse. They choose send articles to my coworker. My coworker then misses work and therefore I do not get the information on time.
5. How to submit obituaries and weddings.
Most papers have forms to fill out for obituaries and weddings. When submitting an obituary, the newspaper will contact the funeral home to verify death. Believe it or not some people will try to report a fake death, so editors must protect themselves. In most cases the funeral home will submit the obit for you. For weddings, its simple. Fill out the information and submit a photo. If no form, write your story and the editor will do the rest.