Find the nugget & don’t sell yourself short

I was running on two hours of sleep. My computer blue-screened, causing me to lose a paper on the history of Africa due at 2 p.m., and for one brief moment of terror, it seemed the Media Center thought my panel was scheduled for Friday.

However, none of that mattered when 5 p.m. rolled around and my entire semester of work had culminated into one pivotal night– the panel on Technology and the Future of Journalism.

The panel. The same panel that caused me many sleepless nights, frantic afternoons and hours of research. The same panel that I planned, scouted for, researched for, liaised with countless contacts about, sent entirely too many e-mails about and ultimately intended on moderating.

After what seemed like years, I woke today to realize that it was basically out of my hands. The panelists were committed and debriefed, the Tweets and Facebook event and everything else you can do to promote something had been done, the food had been bought, my questions were ready… all that was left was to just do it.

And I could not be happier with the end result. The discussion was free-flowing and interesting, even before the panel began, and the message that the panelists conveyed was clear: journalism is not dead; if you are a good writer, you will be able to find something out there; it takes a good reporter to find that special aspect of the story (the nugget, if you will); most importantly, do not sell yourself short.

Really though, I’m not doing the event justice (I think I’m in some sort of post panel stupor). Soon, the panel in its entirety will be available for viewing on the blog and comments and further thoughts will obviously be welcome.

I’m going to end this post with a list of thank-you’s. I really could not have done this without the following people and I’m forever grateful for all the help, guidance, input and overall support. So, a big “Thank you!” to:

Theresa Sullivan Barger, Adam Bryant, Barry Lewis, Christine Rochelle, Dr. Lepre, the Marist SCA and everyone else who Tweeted about the event, the Media Center, everyone who attended the event, Tom for being my right-hand man, Danny for getting me a life-saving cup of coffee when the computer began to turn blue and I contemplated throwing it out the window (and then following it), and everyone else who helped to make this an amazing experience.

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