Deadline week

It is that time again. It’s time for me to stay after school each and every day this week until the dark evening hours, stuffed into the JagWire room to suffer with my fellow editors. We have until 3 p.m. on Friday to design and finalize issue 15.3 of the national award winning JagWire newsmagazine.

This edition, we are publishing some very interesting topics that should make us a strong contender for the 2015 Best of Show award for Washington state. Our main FOCUS magazine topic is cancer. More specifically, a look at the culture surrounding cancer and taking a stand behind those affected by the disease. Within the four-page FOCUS section, we are featuring three staff members that have cancer and honoring a staff member that passed away from cancer in November.

Throughout the rest of the 16-page issue, we are publishing a few articles about the community and some big changes, and our usual dose of student features.

Because of this, I may not have another post until Friday, unless I find the time to scrape up something to publish real quick. If I don’t post anything this week, I wish you all a good week. If I do, I’ll see you then.

Advertisements

Busy In the Newsroom

I have been really busy with the newspaper lately, which shouldn’t be a surprise. It’s our first real issue of the year, and it’s going to be a good one.

By good I don’t mean it’s like all of the other ones. I mean it will be really good. First of all, this issue, which will be released November 7, is going to be the first Special Edition we have had in many years. Second, our main theme is a topic that is rarely touched upon by high school journalists.

It is proving difficult to create, having the smallest staff in the publication’s 15-year history, with only 14 members, but it will have to do. Everyone is super stressed out, but I know it will be worth it. I’ll update you on this production cycle as things get moving along.

A busy start to JagWire this year

JagWire is officially online, as I have stated before. I am extremely thrilled to be moving the award-winning publication into the 21st century, and doing it right. Thanks to WordPress.com and School Newspapers Online, JagWire has a state-of-the-art website using the SNO Flex theme, which allows us to operate a professional home page with a showcase slidehow, recent sports scores ticker, breaking news ticker, custom image header, and each indivual section’s highlights. The design is phenomenal and its easy enough to use.

So far, the new JagWire website has racked in nearly 1000 page views in just two weeks. You can find our website at erhsjagwire.com.

JagWire also released the first print issue of the year, 15.1, on Tuesday to mostly positive feedback. Its the first time the publication has used spot-color since May 2013, so that’s very exciting. JagWire couldn’t of had a better start to the year (unless it involves the school actually giving us enough money and equipment to operate, which has never happened.)

This is why I have been absent. Managing a newspaper is turning out to be more work than I could have ever imagined, especially with so much uncharted territory ahead. For now, I’m signing off again.

Redesigning a newsmagazine: fonts, fonts, and more fonts

Once I was that person who believed that fonts were all the same. You had your ‘handwriting’ fonts, your bold fonts, and your regular fonts. Over the past two years I have paid much more attention to fonts, mostly because of my current position of co-editor-in-chief of my school newsmagazine, JagWire. I can now easily recognize the differences between script, serif, sans serif, and I pay close attention to the spacing, thickness, and whether or not a font is light, bold, or semi-bold. There are so many characteristics of certain types of fonts, and now I am stuck trying to figure out what the best ones are.

When I applied to become the editor-in-chief of JagWire, (a promotion from my position last year as the news section editor/designer) it was right after I had gotten back from the JEA/NSPA convention in San Diego. I had learned so much about what makes a good, appealing newspaper, and I wanted to turn JagWire around.

Now, with the help of my fellow wonderful and creative co-editor-in-chief, I can make it happen.

JagWire currently uses a bunch of stale and uninteresting font combinations  such as MS Reference Serif, Khmer UI, and Helvetica. While I’m not hating on these fonts, they looking boring when together. As the first part of the paper’s redesign, the old fonts MUST GO!

So, I have picked a few of my favorites:

Headlines:

  • Berlin Sans FB
  • Bernard MT
  • Century Gothic
  • Franklin Gothic

Body Text:

  • Baskerville Old Face
  • Adobe Minion Pro
  • Centaur
  • Garamond
  • Lucida Bright
  • Georgia

These fonts aren’t super exciting either, but they offer a cleaner and more professional look that what the existing fonts offer. The other important thing is that they have to follow AP style and the recommendations of JEA/NSPA/WJEA.

Once we all agree on fonts, the fun part begins: choosing our new design. More on that next week. For now, I will leave you with a list of fonts I want banned from JagWire:

To Be Banned From JagWire (hopefully):

  • Courier New
  • Old English Text
  • Nyala
  • SimHei
  • Times New Roman
  • Arial
  • Calibri
  • AR Essence
  • Dotumche
  • Gulimche
  • Impact
  • KaiTi
  • Lucida Condensed
  • MS Reference Serif
  • Microsoft Sans Serif
  • MS Reference Sans Serif
  • Comic Sans