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In the Newsroom: Inner-workings of The Roundup, process revealed

By Dallas Ducar ’10
Co-Editor in Chief

Photo by Josh Zillwood '10 - The Roundup staff works diligently in class during March to deliver a new edition.

While The Roundup is almost always in some state of writing, investigating and editing, many hardly see what really takes place within the walls of E331.

More frequently these days, The Roundup may bleep into existence with Twitter posts, Facebook notifications and Web site updates. But it is most known when it is released once a month.

As a monthly publication, it can be hard for students to think that The Roundup even exists in between the dates it is released. However, this could not be farther from the truth.

There are more than 23 reporters and photographers who work directly in the journalism class associated with The Roundup. Furthermore, there are nearly two dozen other students who work indirectly as contributors outside the class.

However, this still does not fully describe what goes on in the newsroom on the mysterious third floor of Eller.

Everything from welcoming guest speakers to knighting editors has taken place in the newsroom of The Roundup.

Yes, that is correct. The Roundup staff has a legendary sword that has been used to knight editors in previous months.

Even the monthly creation of the paper has its own traditions.

The production of each edition starts with a monthly “budget session,” a time when the staff gathers together and pitches ideas for the next edition.

Usually in this process editors hear many great ideas shouted out, along with other more “extraneous” ideas.

These ideas can range from reoccurring, constant ideas to “expose” how the fountain drink machines in the Great Hall are really robots with “spinning blades of death” to how Security Director Mr. John Buchanan is the “Dean of Awesome.”

Following the budget session, the editors step back into the shadows and allow the writers and photographers to work on their assignments while still learning course curriculum.

The editors also set two deadlines one week apart for articles to keep writers on track and to allow the proper amount of time for editing.

Occasionally during this time the editors may be called back into a room commonly known as “The Bat Cave.” This room is usually where the editors’ “top secret” discussions take place.

While conversations concerning the paper are usually the main topic, I will not deny that plans for global domination may have surfaced a few times in the cave as well.

If one ventures farther into the Bat Cave there are The Roundup archives.

These archives date back to the 70s  and serve as a historical record of Brophy.

Across the room, away from the archives, is where all the horrors of pop culture reside. From Hot Chelle Rae to Justin Bieber, posters, stickers, fliers and other assorted paraphernalia of popular icons cover this wall.

The reason why? Because The Roundup is sent hundreds of promotions from different musicians looking for music reviews, and we finally decided that it was time to stop wasting the posters and pamphlets we received and to post them on the wall in the Bat Cave.

After the month’s articles are written (and submitted by their deadlines) the assignments then go into the editors’ hands where they prepare to use the infamous red pen with no restraint.

After all the pieces are edited “Late Night Layout” begins.

Once a month the staff gathers together to layout the newspaper after school.

This sometimes extends to the late hours of the night.

This process is one that includes massive edits, re-edits and even more edits.
After everything has been laid out on the computer, a monstrous feast of pizza and soda is held.

After going home for a good night’s rest, the editors finally return once more to look over the paper as it exists in its final state. Any more minor additions or edits are added to the edition and finally it is sent to the Palmer Kline printing company.

Finally, in a week or so the printed, finished copies of The Roundup are delivered to the school and many staff members volunteer to distribute the paper at lunch or break the next day.

And by this time the staff is already hard at work on the next edition.

While it may seem that The Roundup is only in existence once a month, in reality, there is hardly a dull moment.

We work more than four periods a week to both “inform and entertain the Brophy community” with “pertinent information about the Brophy community.”

To do so, we sport five o’clock shadow, drink copious amounts of caffeine and always keep a notebook handy.

Such is the life of a journalist in the newsroom.