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How to be a successful high school journalist


Have you ever wanted an outlet to express your opinions where you’ll be reveared instead of criticized for being annoying? Allow me to introduce you to the world of high school journalism.

As a self proclaimed expert high school journalist, I feel it’s my duty to provide the next generation of high school journalists with a step by step process on how to be a successful high school journalist and maybe even win a couple state competitions.

Here is my seven step process for success.

Step one. Preparing for war.

Before you dive headfirst into the oddly complex world of high school journalism, it’s important to build a relationship with your journalism teacher. By doing so you’ll be able to gain so-called “teacher’s pet privileges” and essentially scam your way into the role of Editor-In-Chief early on. You’ll also want to get to know people at your school so when you eventually become a published journalist your peers can read and review your work (it’s less terrifying than it sounds). By doing this you may also potentially gain more insight into what interests your peers have.

Step two. Build your army.

All that the light touches is yours, but it could use some work. I’d recommend cracking your knuckles and taking yourself way too seriously for a bit while you gather your resources. Use this time to assess what your staff members strengths are and delegate rolls based on aforementioned qualities. 

Step three: Consolidate resources.

Following your staff members official entry into knighthood, (delegation of roles) now is the time to turn your attention towards building your army (portfolio). I’d recommend testing the waters with a couple lightly opinionated articles before cannonballing into the deep end with a risqué editorial.

Step four: Relish in your glory (but only for a brief moment).

So now what? You publish an extraordinary article (looking back of course it’s a bit of a mess, but for the time, for it being a school paper and in the midst of an education crisis you’re practically Shakespeare) and everyone’s eyes are on you. Soon your paper begins gathering numbers that even you thought may not be possible for a school journalism website. Unfortunately NOT all press is good press.

Step five: Trial and execution.

End up in front of the EPS board. Gather your resources. Surry out with your tail between your legs.

Step six: Burial and rebirth.

Take this time to remember that this is a school paper that’s meant to be fun. Take yourself a little less seriously. Dip your foot in a sports article or two (and then quickly remove your foot).

Step seven: Establishing a New Empire.

While the younger you may have been a little overzealous, you can now use the past as a jumping stone for what grabs people’s attention and what you now know you’re great at writing. Now, rule over your domain with a benevolent hand and seize the state championship title. (Or two.)

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About the Contributor
Olive Miller
Olive Miller, Howler Co-Editor In Chief
Hello! My name is Olive Miller and I'm a senior at Santa Fe. This is my third year on staff and my third year as Co-Editor-In-Chief! I love Vampire Weekend, traveling and I'm happy to be rejoining the staff for my final year!

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