So if Friday's Banner Graphic might seem a little "off" in a few parts (sports pages certainly not included), it's because yours truly had his first trial by fire on Thursday.
Jared took some time off for a "mancation" out in the woods somewhere, and so part of building and proofing the paper was left to me, Eric and our sports editor Trent (someone who knows how to create pages). While Jared did do much of the paper's backbone beforehand, I was nervous about it all when I came into the office at 1 p.m.
The cut-and-dry of pagination is that it can turn unpredictable. Besides being on the lookout for more obits, we have to figure out what will fit and how. Though Jared has given me a crash course, I have little experience with the "how." This is all still to me.
Some of it did stick, though. There probably would not have been a paper if that wasn't the case. I leaned pretty heavily on Trent with InDesign and on Eric for ideas of what could go where. It took about nine hours to get all the PDFs to the pressmen. I was not done, though. It was about 10:30 p.m. before I was done putting all our stories online.
There is a definite learning curve to knowing how to do all this stuff — and to be able to do it efficiently without getting compulsive and then flustered. Going through the motions made me a little more appreciative of the time crunches Jared is under as editor. This is also not just about the paper, but about the ads, classifieds and inserts.
What Thursday really showed is that putting out a paper is a team effort between the newsroom, legal and marketing. None of it will work without good communication. Finally having a "kind-of" role as editor and getting it done was humbling on my part.
This was my first test as a paginator, and I think it went well for the most part. These are skills I need to learn to the fullest, and I know that I can only get better from here.