Column - A new reporter in town?I think I might have some competition in the world of writing. Before the school year ended, I had the privilege of being interviewed by Alexis Habberstad, who attends Brandon Elementary School.
By: Celeste Beam, Alexandria Echo Press
I think I might have some competition in the world of writing.
Before the school year ended, I had the privilege of being interviewed by Alexis Habberstad, who attends Brandon Elementary School.
For one of her school projects, Alexis had to choose someone in the news media to interview and then write a report on. I felt honored that she wanted to interview me.
I can’t say I remember the last time I was interviewed. I’m usually the one doing the interviewing. Remember, I’m the reporter.
Well, Alexis’ mom, Pamela, who happens to be an awesome BeautiControl consultant, called me sometime around the middle of May wondering if her daughter, Alexis, could interview me for a school project.
I casually said, “sure,” and we set the date – Tuesday, May 26 at 4 p.m.
I didn’t really think too much of it. She’s a 9-year-old “little” girl. How intimidating could she be, right? I honestly didn’t believe it was going to that hard and I didn’t think I was going to be that nervous. Until I met Alexis.
Here was this pint-sized little cutie-pa-tootie with the hippest, coolest glasses you’ve ever seen and a smile as bright and wide as a rainbow. I am sure those eyes of hers have melted her mother’s heart one too many times.
But, let me tell you, she came waltzing in with her clipboard in one hand, pen in the other and a let’s-get-down-to-business attitude. Seriously, it almost felt like Diane Sawyer or Barbara Walters was interviewing me.
Alexis had three pages of questions all written out, ready to go. She was so professional and poised to perfection. I was truly impressed.
At one point during the interview, I thought one of the words I used was beyond a soon-to-be fourth grader’s spelling list so I started spelling it for her. In the cutest matter-of-fact voice, Alexis politely informed me I didn’t have to spell it because she knew how.
The questions Alexis asked were in-depth and thorough. She wanted to know what the requirements were for my job and the tools I used to get the job done. She wanted to know how I gathered information and if my job had any action in it. She asked if I had my own photographer or if I took my own photos.
Alexis inquired whether or not I wrote really serious stories or if I got to write silly stories. And she wanted to know if any of my stories haven’t been good enough to print. She wondered if our office was open 24/7, if I had to wear a uniform, if I had some kind of identification and several more really good questions.
When she was done with her interview, I asked if she wanted a tour of our building. Of course, she said yes.
As we walked around, she asked more questions and seemed genuinely interested in what I do on a day-to-day basis. She was so pleasant and just so gosh-darn cute.
After our interview and tour were complete, Alexis and her mom said goodbye and Alexis thanked me several times for spending time with her and answering her questions.
I thanked her for choosing me and for the time we spent together, albeit its shortness.
A couple of days later, I received an e-mail from Alexis thanking me again for the interview and the tour. How professional is that? I don’t even typically do that, although I know I should. For a 9-year-old, she has her ducks in a row. That’s for sure. I found out she thinks that maybe one day, a career in the media just might be for her.
Pamela informed me that the “Wonderful Writing Award” was presented to Alexis by her teacher, Mrs. Shea, for being the “student author of the year for writing with creativity.”
Way to go, Alexis. I am so proud of you. Keep up the great work. Here is what she wrote:
News Media by Alexis Habberstad
There are three kinds of media: television, radio and my favorite, the newspaper. To be a newspaper reporter, you have to have work experience and some schooling.
Reporters gather information by talking to people, researching or listening to their scanners. The different kinds of news media include news reporters, sports reporters and life reporters. The tools they might use are cameras, computers, phones, pens and lots of notebooks.
To get a story into the paper usually takes between one and four people working on it. The people who help get the story published are the sources, the editors, the proofreaders and the paginators. Some of the more serious stories printed include crashes, state and government news and crime.
News reporters have a special kind of identification called a press pass. Newspapers are kept in a cold storage room. A cold storage room has books with many newspapers in it. Some of these books are so old they go back to the 1800s!
People who work in news media are important to our community.