I love my job. I really do.
But there are times that it can certainly be trying. Like when someone sends an email and asks for your cellphone number so they can complain at you about something on the phone instead of in an email. Or when people get angry and accuse you of all manner of things because you won’t print the letter they submitted that is filled with falsehoods.
The worst – the absolute worst – is when the English majors feel the need to fire off letters or emails about mistakes they find in the paper. I have written about this before, but it is always a problem. There must be a nationwide network of retired teachers and others who majored in English who feel the need to contact the paper about every mistake.
I get there are mistakes, that is sadly a part of being human. But when you get snarky letters from people pointing out even small problems that could be up for interpretation, it does get a bit annoying.
But there is another side to being the editor of the paper, a great side. I get to meet a lot of wonderful people in the community and package their local news together for them each week. News stories, events, graduations, classes, honor rolls, library news – you name it, we have it in The Life every week.
And people appreciate it. I know because people reach out to me with wonderful, warm comments that truly make my day.
I even get Christmas cards from readers. I got a wonderful one this year from Loraine Untz of Oregon. The fact that she took the time to send a card because she likes the paper made my day – my week. I am always pleased when people enjoy the newspaper.
We have recently started our annual voluntary pay campaign. We are a free paper, so the voluntary pay from people who enjoy it does help. And some of the money also goes to area senior centers.
As a part of sending in money to the paper, people send a lot of notes thanking us for the paper. I just want all of you to know how much your kind words mean to us.
The Life is a part of the community. I am not from here. I am not even from Illinois. But I am a newspaperman and have made it my career. I love newspapers and know how much they matter to a community.
I appreciate that it means something to people in the community as well. And when people take the time to send a note of support for the newspaper it is like a shot of adrenaline for those of us working to put the paper out every week.
That is one thing I really appreciate about The Life. As someone who came from the daily newspaper world, I didn’t understand the depth of feeling people had for their weekly newspaper. I understand that now, and it has been a highlight of a career filled with them.
So thank you for your support and thank you for the positive feedback you have sent us. We appreciate it and we appreciate you. You are readers, yes. But you are our customers, and we try every day to do the best we can for you.