Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal

Welcome to Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal, a blog written by the newspaper's staff at A2 Journal, a new, weekly, community newspaper covering Ann Arbor. This blog is a place for members of the newspaper's staff to write their thoughts, observations, opinions and other informative pieces they put together while covering the rich history, interesting people, institutions and traditions that make Ann Arbor such a unique community.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Aug. 3 - Lisa's Musings (on elections) and Every Day Life

It's primary election day. This news flash is for anyone who might have been living in a cave and hasn't checked their mailbox, watched TV or received umpteen robo calls from candidates.

And several times a year, we reporters deal with elections. This means we do a lot more than just show up at our local polling place and fill in the circles. We actually have to cover these races -- before, during and after the fact.

Ask any reporter about elections and they will be in one of two camps. We either love elections or hate them. There is no in between.

I happen to be in the I Love Elections Camp, which makes tonight kinda fun. And after 30 years of doing this, I have a plan in place.

My Election Day To Do List includes:

1. Sleep in. (That didn't happen this year, as I met an Ann Arbor candidate for mayor to take pictures early this morning.)

2. Vote. Check. (I was No. 115 at my polling place in Sylvan Township.)

3. Pre-write story with background information about the candidates. Check. (Also set it up with my best guess on the winners-- we'll see how good my guesses were.)

4. Call candidates to set up times to speak to them. Check.

5. Nap. Check. (Until a robo call woke me up)

6. Take a shower to wake up, make a fresh pot of coffee, put on comfortable clothes. Check, check and check.

7. Make and eat hearty dinner. Check.

8. Find something else to do (like blog) until polls close at 8 p.m. Anticipation of the results grows. Check.

9. Start checking county Website at 9 p.m. for early results, knowing full well, there won't be much there to deal with until 9:30-10 p.m.

10. Hit the refresh button over and over and over again.

11. Hope like hell that the key candidates for story answer their phones when I call; keep calling until I reach as many as possible.

12. Some candidates don't call back, but file story anyway, because it's way past deadline and editor is having a cow.

13. Some candidate calls back Wednesday morning, waking me up. I don't answer.

14. Spend most of Wednesday in a fog after long night of bringing you election results.

15. Immediately start contacting the winners of the primaries to do it all over again in November with even more races and candidates to cover.

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