From time to time, readers have questions about how we do things at the Daily Press, and how they can contribute to or communicate with the community through the newspaper. The short answer is: Tell us about it, and we'll help you get the word out.
We rely on readers for lots of information. Indeed, the Daily Press has a higher rate of community participation than most newspapers. That means organizations, churches, and individuals turn in news that our reporters wouldn't be able to cover: a synopsis of weekly church activities, reports of meetings of local organizations, calls for help from nonprofits, and honor rolls and other material from area schools. And unless the item in question is clearly a commercial endeavor aimed at personal or business profits, we'll print it almost every time.
If you are part of an organization, school, or business, feel free to send press releases and photos to email@example.com. During the week, we have pages dedicated to various niches: Education, Business & Farm, Faith, Tribal, Arts & Entertainment, Living, Sports, and Local. We cover the gamut, and we're here to help.
Sometimes, we at TDP need help ourselves from readers to flesh out an important niche product, or special pages in the regular newspaper. That's why we recently asked members of any club, organization, governmental body, institution or public entity to let us know of any information changes we might need to know about for our upcoming Newcomers Guide. We have about another week to gather material for that, and you can email new information to Sheri Gourd at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our staffers are supposed to update all details, but sometimes, things can get by us.
We've also seen a dropoff in faith news lately. TDP is one of the only newspapers that still runs a weekly page devoted specifically to news from area churches. Some church correspondents report what happened in services the previous Sunday; others talk about upcoming events. Still others tie in Scriptures and lessons to modern life. Whatever the case, we welcome new correspondents to the lineup, which includes some who have been with us for over 35 years. There are a few policies, but the main requirement is that the correspondent be approved by his or her pastor to submit news.
We're asked quite often about personal columns, and whether we're accepting any new ones. Most of the requests lately have come from individuals wanting their own guaranteed space on the Faith pages. We have a Wednesday Witness column that could run every Wednesday, with three regular contributors - and we have room for one more. We also have one national column and a local column by Gene Ruth Brumback - one of those who's been writing for us since time out of mind. At the moment, we are not accepting any more columns for our Faith pages.
We do, however, still have one more slot for a local conservative columnist for our Opinion page. For now, we are unable to compensate columnists - and we have a number of people who would love to write one, free of charge. But none of those asking for space fit the specifics we're looking for at the moment. We have one good conservative voice in Randy Gibson, and would like one more - if possible, from a woman's perspective. Email Executive Editor Kim Poindexter if you think you've got what it takes, at email@example.com.
Another feature generating quite a bit of community interest is our Quick 5 feature, which appears on the front page of our weekend edition. Basically we ask our subject five questions, and he or she answers each one in 50-60 words, for a total of about 300 (the questions aren't included in that count). Several people have inquired how they can be featured here. It should be noted that the purpose of this feature is not to promote a business or a political candidate, though we may feature people who are actively involved in politics. We're looking for people who are community leaders, or were at one time; people with special skills and talents; or folks who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to better our community. Basically, we're looking for someone whose story will interest our readers. If you know of someone who fits that bill, email Kim, and give us a few details about the person, so we can tailor our questions to the individual.
We always have our ears open for ideas, so keep them coming! We listen.