Random thoughts, from crime scenes to scenic views

I’ve been super-busy lately, so I’ll share a few random thoughts. Please pardon my ADHD approach …

***

People often ask me how I come up with stories, which I attempted to answer with this post, one of the first ones on this blog.

Over at The Baltimore Sun, Gus Sentementes offers a detailed play-by-play of how he developed and reported a story on the growing profession of social media experts.

While my subject matter is totally different, the process is similar.

When you’re on a beat, you start to notice interesting things. You pay attention to see if it’s just an anomaly or perhaps a trend. Then you start poking around and asking around.

Eventually, you search for sources of information to flesh out your story. Sometimes that happens with phone calls or tweets or emails or talking to people in person, depending on the story.

Click over to Sentementes’ BaltTech blog to read his take on his story.

***

My iPhone saved the day again last week as I worked on a story about a multiple stabbing in Crofton on deadline.

Front page story and photo brought to you by my iPhone.

I got the call from fellow reporter E.B. Furgurson III at 7:30 a.m. last Wednesday, as I was just about to head out the door.

Instead of going to the office, I went to the scene of the crime in Crofton.

I got there at 8 a.m. and knew I would not be able to get information, write it up and maybe get a phone AND head back to the newsroom in Annapolis by my 9:15 a.m. deadline.

As I’ve done in the past, I typed up my story while sitting in my car, using my Bluetooth keyboard.

And while I was shooting with my DSLR camera, I also snapped a few frames with my iPhone that I emailed back to the newsroom. The photo editor cropped one of the photos and it ended up on the front page.

Unfortunately, I hadn’t fully charged my phone overnight, so it actually died mid-morning! So I went from being entirely dependent on my phone to do my job to not having use of it at all.

I appreciated the irony.

***

My editor came up with a fun summertime series for me to write called “Chesapeake Summer.” (The name was my husband’s suggestion.)

Each week, I’m highlighting a cool, outdoorsy place to enjoy the summer. For the debut story last week, I went to the Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary. (I actually made my visit there directly after the Crofton stabbing … talk about different worlds!)

Check out The Capital each Friday to see where these Chesapeake Summer travels take me.

***

Last, but not least, a very nice lady I interviewed for a story on oyster gardening was kind enough to send me a picture of me at work.

Don’t worry, I didn’t fall overboard. But I am wearing the same shirt I wore in the Thomas Point Lighthouse photo. Perhaps it’s time for this reporter to get some new threads.

Photo of multimedia journalist and environment reporter Pamela Wood on the Severn River.
Hard at work on the Severn River. Photo courtesy of Susan Benac.
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