Diversity fellows: What we learned at SFJ14

September 15, 2014 Leave a comment

Mariecar Mendoza WatsonDenisePhoto (1)

The Penny Bender Fuchs Diversity Fellowship winners, Mariecar Mendoza and Denise Watson, reflect on their time at the 2014 SFJ annual conference:

During a time in the media industry where metrics and analytics rule many newsrooms, it’s refreshing to know that there is a still a smart, creative group of enthusiastic people who champion the art of storytelling.

What’s more, they’re focused on storytelling about music that moves, food that strengthens bonds with loved ones – or helps folks with their gastrointestinal tract.

That’s the biggest takeaway I got from my first Society of Features Journalism conference, hosted in Nashville this summer.

When I was a teen, I always dreamed of being in the same room with arts and entertainment writers and editors who understood the importance of what most newsrooms scornfully dub “fun journalism.” This year, not only got nearly a week with them, but I got real time with them to bounce around ideas – steal a few ideas, too – and find out how they’re dealing with this digital world that has everyone working on so many platforms at such a fast pace.

Tommy Tomlinson, a writer for Forbes, probably summed up what features writing means to me when he told the attentive crowd of SFJers: “I like to write big stories out of little moments.”

Read more…

Categories: Diversity fellowship

Show and Steal: Saved the Day

September 8, 2014 Leave a comment

Saved the Day cover

Here are the best “looked like we planned it this way” ideas for print and online, as presented at SFJ14 conference in Nashville.

Download the PDFs by clicking Saved the Day

Show and Steal: Online Superstars

September 8, 2014 Leave a comment

Online cover

The best online feature ideas from SFJ14 conference in Nashville.

You can download a PDF of all the Online superstars here.

Show and Steal: Holidays

September 1, 2014 Leave a comment

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PDFs from the SFJ14 conference in Nashville on holidays.

You can download the PDFs here: Show and Steal: Holidays

Show and Steal Editor’s Choice

August 28, 2014 Leave a comment

Editor's Choice-3

FOR MEMBERS ONLY: Enjoy great ideas in our Editor’s Choice portion of Show and Steal, as presented at the SFJ14 conference in Nashville.

Download a printable set of Editor’s Choice here.

We’ll be posting more galleries from Show and Steal soon.

Categories: Members only

Storify: SFJ14 conference highlights in Nashville

August 25, 2014 Leave a comment
Categories: Uncategorized

SFJ Conference schedule

August 7, 2014 Leave a comment
The John Seigenthaler Center, Nashville, Tenn., the site of the annual SFJ Conference

The John Seigenthaler Center, Nashville, Tenn., the site of the annual SFJ Conference

All sessions take place in the John Seigenthaler Center at Vanderbilt University, Nashville.

Wednesday
Registration
5:15-6 p.m. Seigenthaler Center atrium

4 p.m. SFJ board meeting
Location: Freedom Forum Conference Room

6-8 p.m. Opening reception; Rotunda.
Join SFJ members and distinguished guests in an opening reception for the SFJ conference.

Thursday
Registration continues

9 a.m. Welcome
Location: Lecture Hall

9:15-10:30 a.m. General Session
Video Training, Part 1:
Val Hoeppner, a media consultant who has been training newsrooms on video, will take you through the tools and current thinking on videos in newsroom operations
Location: Lecture Hall

10:45-11:45 a.m. General Session
Show and Steal, Part 1 — Great print and web ideas from our members. Be sure to attend.
Location: Lecture Hall

Noon-1:4johnny-cash5 p.m. Lunch
Speaker: Robert Hilburn, author of “Johnny Cash: A Life”
Location: Freedom Forum Conference Room

2-3:30 p.m. General Session
Video, Part 2, with inspiration from Josh Metzler, a photojournalist and instructor. He will show you how to leverage video for compelling storytelling and pieces that are a hit with readers.
Location: Lecture Hall

3:45-4:45 p.m. General Session
Peter Cooper, The Tennessean, talks about covering the music beat in Nashville. Peter will share war stories and talk about the paper’s music initiatives, especially its new video series, “The Story Behind the Song.”
Location: Lecture Hall

5:30-7 p.m.
Silent auction/reception
Help raise money for our Penny Fuchs diversity fellowships and have fun mingling and noshing with fellow SFJ members.
Location: Rotunda (items will be in Classroom 106)

Friday

9:15-10:15 a.m. General Session
Tommy Tomlinson, a former columnist with the Charlotte Observer who now writes about sports, music and writing for Forbes, will talk about narrative storytelling and music.
Location: Lecture Hall

10:30-11:45 a.m. General Session
Show and Steal, Part 2: More great lifestyle, arts and entertainment, food, travel and home and garden ideas to steal for your features sections and websites. We’ll begin with a small panel who will talk about apps.
Location: Lecture Hall

Noon-1:30 p.m. Awards luncheon and presentations
Location: Freedom Forum Conference Room

1:45-3 p.m. General Session
Stefanie Murray of the Tennessean and Lisa Kresl of the Dallas Morning News will show you how understanding analytics and embracing out of the box thinking can help you remain a vital player in your newsroom’s future.
Location: Lecture Hall

3:15-4:15 p.m. General Session
A group of designers and editors will share the ups and downs of working remotely and through central design desks, and share secrets of their success.
Location: Lecture Hall

5:15 p.m. Friday happy hour
Freedom Sings,” a musical history of the First Amendment (and threats to it) presented by Ken Paulson of the First Amendment Center at the John Seigenthaler Center.
Location: Freedom Forum Conference Room

Saturday

9:15-10:15 p.m. General Session
As budgets get tighter but need for content gets greater, editors and producers are increasingly relying on freelancers. A panel of writers and editors guide you on how to make the most of these relationships.
Location: Lecture Hall

10:30-11:30 a.m. General Session
We’re bringing back out Features 9-1-1. Submit questions throughout the conference and we’ll get together to get you the answers you need.
Location: Lecture Hall

11:30 a.m. SFJ Foundation meeting
Location: Freedom Forum Conference Room

12:45 p.m. SFJ board meeting
Location: Freedom Forum Conference Room

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