Exciting Stephen King News

The news story I found is a very exciting one for the literary world – Stephen King has finally written a sequel to one of his greatest stories, The Shining. His new book, Doctor Sleep, is now available to Danny Torrance fans everywhere. I found several websites, news sources, and videos spreading the news with horrific enthusiasm.

YAHOO! News covered the story in their article, “Stephen King returns with sequel to The Shining” released on November 15, 2013. The article is more like an interview with King himself. It talks about how King normally does not write sequels to his books, but for some reason, King could not get the character Danny Torrance out of his head. King also talks about the challenge of writing this sequel thirty six years after the release of The Shining. He knew most of the original readers of The Shining have grown up and are now a very different audience than they were years ago. He had to find a way to scare them as the older adults that they have become. His solution is all about the human aspect. Making people like his characters is how he gets them afraid of what may happen to them.

The YAHOO! story takes on lots of different topics, from what the new book is all about, to how King comes up with his ideas and stories. It also talks about his own struggle with alcohol and what he does and does not want people to take from this book. It is a great insight into the mind of one of our most popular authors. The interview is optimistic and helpful for writers to see just how one of the greats comes up with new and original story ideas.

I interpret these interviews and news clips to be a great way in promoting King’s newest works. It will remind readers that already love King, to purchase this book and get reading. It might even motivate new readers to pick up The Shining and read it before diving into Doctor Sleep. It also encourages writers to be more aware of their surroundings because you never know when an idea could strike.

My evaluation of all three of these media sources is that they are all a great way to get people interested and excited to read the new book. It is only positive with great information and motivation for readers and writers alike. The fact that King shared so much about his own struggle with alcohol just proves that even with huge obstacles it is possible to take a great idea and make it into the next big thing. It is also fun to learn about King’s process in writing both books.

The YouTube video is called, “Stephen King Promotes sequel to The Shining, and it is a press release and interview from Stephen King himself. He talks about his own struggle with alcohol and how both of the main characters in The Shining and in Doctor Sleep struggle with alcoholism as well. He points out that he does not want this to be about alcoholism, it is simply an aspect of his story.

My final source is from the Stephen King website and includes an excerpt from Doctor Sleep. After reading the excerpt I ordered my Kindle copy and plan on reading it over winter break!

There are not too many differences between the YAHOO! story and the YouTube video. They are both interviews from King himself talking about The Shining and Doctor Sleep. They both talk about alcoholism and his characters, and about his love for his character Danny Torrance. The King website is a bit different, it highlights the book, not King, and it features ways to purchase the book. I feel like the YAHOO! story gives the most complete coverage to the story, but that is mostly because I would rather read than watch a video any day. However, the King website is what motivated me to purchase the book.

This news story matters because it is so easy to miss out on great books simply because we do not even know they exist. When major news sources feature authors and new books, we all win – both readers and writers. It is important for avid readers and authors, even up and coming ones, to support other authors and their books. The more publicity authors get, the more people read! And the more people read, the bigger the need is for great writers.

This story is also important because it points out how King finds motivation in coming up with great story ideas. If we want to become successful authors one day, it is important to copy the things that work for great authors. One website that is very helpful with this idea is Write to done. It has a great article called, “Learn from the Greats: 7 Writing Habits of Amazing Writers.” This article has a lot of great information about how the really great authors work. Knowing this information does not have to change everything about how we write, but it can give us some good tips in becoming great one day! I encourage anyone with a goal of becoming a successful author to visit this website.

The main thing to learn about this article is that it does not matter if you are a fairly new author with an alcohol problem or an older author in pretty good health and a successful career under your belt. As long as you have a great idea and a plan to put it in writing, anything is possible.

Our next step is to visit the Stephen King Message Board website and beg King to make sure Doctor Sleep is made into a movie! We have to have the sequel to our book collection and our movie collection after all!

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Sexy Advertising

When it comes to advertising it seems like everything goes! From sex, emotions, love, humor, and violence, advertisers are willing to try anything to get us to buy their products. I usually respond best to advertisements with a little humor. That is why I picked the DStv commercial to analyze.

The DStv commercial starts with one fireman cleaning an empty fire house. He decides to use the fire pole to practice his pole dancing skills (I have to point out that he is very good!). During his last big move on the pole, writing pops up saying, “Guess Who’s Been Watching Late Night Movies on DStv?” It ends with the alarm going off and another fireman sliding down the pole, and landing on the dancing, sexy fire man.

This commercial uses humor to catch the consumer’s attention. It keeps the consumers focused by adding a small piece of advertising, pointing out the product being sold, instead of bombarding the consumer with information and details that will likely bore the audience. It also uses sex in a very clever way, making it funny instead of blatantly sexy.

The key to this commercials success is that it is not over the top in anyway. The fireman is fully clothed and average looking, instead of half-naked and muscle bound. He is dancing in a sexy yet funny way, making the commercial appealing to both men and women. Plus the consumer keeps watching with a need to know what in the heck he is up to.

Although I’m not convinced this commercial is the best way to get consumers to purchase DStv, I am positive it gets most consumers to pause long enough to watch the entire commercial. With our busy lives, just getting us to stand still for 58 seconds, is a victory all its own. It may offend some people, but if that is the case, I do not suspect those people are watching a whole lot of traditional TV. All in all, I believe this commercial is a success, both in entertainment value and in getting people interested in finding out what DStv is all about.

I believe this message is transmitting a sense of humor and a lot of fun. This commercial makes people think about laughter and a good time, something you want to associate your entertainment choice with. It turns the traditional gender roles around by making the man the sex object, but in a way that is funny and entertaining. It is not taking things too seriously or sending any deep dark messages in my opinion.

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Ethical Writing

After reading the assignment to find at least two stories that either demonstrates compliance with or violation of the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics, I immediately thought of journalist Johann Hari of The Independent. In 2011 Hari wrote an article apologizing for his unethical behavior, after it was found out that he had falsified interviews and changed Wikipedia entries for his page and other journalist’s pages as well. Although I do not personally care that he changed Wikipedia entries because everyone knows, or should know, not to trust a darn thing Wikipedia says. I do however, care about him falsifying interviews. Hari said that he changed the exact wording that was said in interviews because, “When I recorded and typed up any conversation, I found something odd: points that sounded perfectly clear when you heard them being spoken often don’t translate to the page” (Hari). Instead of typing the interview word for word and then explaining, in his own words, what the conversation actually meant, he took it upon himself to make up words that were never said. This violates the Minimize Harm ethic that states, “Ethical journalists treat sources, subjects and colleagues as human beings deserving of respect” (Campbell and Martin 426). Although I am very happy Hari admitted to his wrong doings, I am not sure he can ever be trusted again. When someone blatantly lies to his readers, it makes everything he says after that hard to believe. I respect his apology but I think it may be time for him to find a new career. He has lost our trust and I do not think that can be regained.

When it comes to ethical reporting, the thing that stands out in my mind is how The Denver Post won a Pulitzer Prize for the Aurora Theater shooting coverage. They took the time to report the shooting in a timely matter, yet still made sure facts were correct. The even started each online story with the pictures of the victims and a tag line below them saying, “Remembering the victims” (The Denver Post). They seemed to report the shooting with the somber and respectful mood it deserved. Instead of the sensationalized, speculated facts that other news sources seemed to go with. These journalists went on to show their ethics when they, “treated sources, subjects and colleagues as human beings deserving of respect” (Campbell and Martin 426), by donating the “$10,000 from the prize to the Aurora Mental Health Center and the Bonfils Blood Center” (The Denver Post). When a news group and their reporters are more interested in doing the right thing, instead of making money, they are a trusted and ethical source in my opinion.

Work Citied

Campbell, Richard, and Christopher R. Martin. Media & culture: an introduction to mass communication. 8th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martins, 2013. Print.

Hari, Johann. “Johann Hari: A personal apology.” The Independent. The Independent, 15 Sept. 2011. Web. 3 Nov. 2013. <http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/commentators/johann-hari/johann-hari-a-personal-apology-2354679.html>.

The Denver Post. “Jonathan Blunk, 26.” The Denver Post staff wins Pulitzer Prize for Aurora theater shooting coverage. N.p., 15 Apr. 2013. Web. 3 Nov. 2013. <http://www.denverpost.com/theatershooting/ci_23029438/denver-post-staff-wins-pulitzer-prize-aurora-theater>.

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Filed under College Assignment, ethics, journalism, Newspapers, publishing, Reading, Writing

Just Read It

The Wired article, “Book Publishers Scramble to Rewrite Their Future” by Evan Hughes, is about how the book publishing industry has changed and continues to change. With the addition of e-readers like Kindle and Nook, publishing companies are at a crossroad, weighing the pros and cons of paper books compared to e-books. The problem is the cost of publishing, along with the damage done to the environment from using all that paper. E-books provide a cheaper and greener way to make books. However, traditional publishers have not given up on paper books just yet. Hughes’ feels the need to tell us this story because these changes will alter the way readers receive their books and what books are available.

The main pattern I see developing is that readers are switching to e-books. Of course all readers are not making the leap to a Kindle, however, the benefits of owning a Kindle are starting to stack up and eventually even the most diehard paper book reader will give in to all the perks of an e-reader. The article even states, “Amazon likes to point out that new Kindle buyers go on to purchase almost five times as many books from Amazon, print and digital, in the ensuing year as they did in the prior one.” Once a person experiences how great it is to own a Kindle, they do not go back to the local book store very often.

I believe that the main thing that needs to be studied more closely is how much money is gained or lost by selling e-books. There is no doubt about it that paper books cost more to purchase than e-books do. However, if a company sells one hundred paper books at twenty dollars each, compared to two hundred e-books at ten dollars each, the only difference in that scenario is that no trees were harmed in the making of those e-books. Most things in life come down to money, and the key to publishing is no different. They need to study just how much is gained or lost in each category of book selling before they can create a solid plan for how to move ahead in the future.

This report matters because I personally feel that reading is the key to everything positive. Reading makes people more intelligent, more informed, entertained, involved in the human condition, and connected to different ideas and personalities. Everyone should read on a regular basis! This report is talking about how we will be getting our reading material in the future, and will affect what we have access to and how much it will be. The meaning of it is to point out changes and ideas that are happening in the publishing world. These changes and ideas affect both writers and readers. It breaks my heart to think about people that do not care. We should all care because reading is the only way to improve our current and future lives. Reader’s Digest says, “A love of reading can protect your brain from Alzheimer’s disease, slash stress levels, encourage positive thinking, and fortify friendships.” Sounds like we could all use a little more reading in our lives.

The purpose of this report is to spread knowledge about how the publishing industry is changing and how it will affect all of us. I feel like this article is a great way to get information to the public. The only problem is getting this article out to enough people. This article is a positive story, mostly because it is full of information. Information is always a positive thing, even if the information that is given is negative, it is always important to receive the information if we want to make a change or an informed decision. It is also positive because it points out how many people are still reading!

I think the main way to add to this discussion or participate in this situation is by simply deciding how we each want to purchase our books. I personally own a Kindle and will continue buying all my books in e-book form. By purchasing books, in any form, we are all putting our input into this discussion. It is the consumers that will decide how the publishing company moves on in the future. The main thing is that we all continue to read! Read as much as possible!

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RIP Newspapers

After reading the article, “Newspapers: Stabilizing, but Still Threatened,” I have decided that I do not feel that the traditional newspaper will make it. I feel like an online newspaper is completely different than a physical newspaper. Newspapers making the switch to online, is not surviving in my opinion. It is completely changing their ways, so that they are a completely different version of their former shape and feel. The problem with trying to make a newspaper company work in the traditional sense is that it goes against everything people are working for. It is not green in anyway. It takes tons of trees to make paper newspapers, and then those newspapers are sometimes wrapped in plastic bags, all to be delivered in a gas guzzling vehicle. The entire process does not make sense for our world today.

In addition to all of these environmentally unfriendly issues, the newspaper then has to find a target audience willing to pay for stories, information, and news. Most of these stories, information, and news can be found on the internet for free. Making their job of getting and keeping loyal customers even harder, especially when the target newspaper audience is of an older generation and, sorry to say, dying off.

I do believe there is a niche for newspapers. Local, small town newspapers are probably still going to make it because they offer news and information not available other places. These local newspapers are the only ones running stories about local folks getting married, graduating, and obituaries. They also tell very local stories, like how old farmer Bob’s crop didn’t come in this year. This local focus will ensure that small town newspapers will be around for years to come.

The outlook for traditional newspapers is not good. They will most certainly have to change their business model if they want to succeed. They also need to give consumers a reason to pay for information and stories that are available on the internet for free. The key to making that transition successful is going to be in the hands of the journalists. If the writing is good enough and new enough, then people will pay to read it. However, if they simply spew the same information available in a hundred different places from a simple Google search, they do not stand a chance. I actually feel like this is a good thing because it will make journalists work harder, giving us new and interesting stories to learn and grow from.

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Television killed the book star

Television does not play a prominent role in my news beat. Television is all about seeing entertainment, not about reading something and creating an image using imagination. Some talk shows used to have book clubs on them, like the Oprah show, and Regis and Kelly, now the Kelly and Michael show. However, they no longer have any of those that I’m aware of. When Oprah had her book club, she could personally make or break a book. If a book had Oprah’s seal of approval on it, that author could guarantee they would make the bestselling list in no time flat. Oprah reminded people how important, entertaining, and valuable reading could be. Although I did not always agree with what she had to say about pieces of work, I loved that she got people reading. It is because of these shows no longer have book clubs, I feel television no longer has a role in my reading and writing news beat. Television does show movies that have been created from books. Perhaps people seeing these movies on television could generate more readers in the world.

I am not sure television is all that effective in promoting news about books, writing, and authors. Perhaps news stations talking about book sales, or local authors is helpful, but I cannot really think of a time recently that I watched something on television promoting reading or writing in any way. Again, other than the occasional talk show talking about a new diet book, self-help book, or controversial book. For example, Fifty Shades of Grey was a hot topic in the news, talk shows, and entertainment news when it came out. Although I do not feel people were talking about it because reading is such a great thing – they were talking about it because sex sales, even when it is in writing.

Television is more effective in promoting reading than other medians because so many people watch it. They usually watch the same shows on regular basis which creates trust between the host and the audience. That is why Oprah became such an authority in the world of reading. Television is also less effective because chances are, if someone is watching a lot of TV, they are not doing a lot of reading. Also, there are a lot of people out there that think, why would I read it when I can just wait till the movie comes out? Such a terrible thought process in my opinion.

I am not aware of any specialized channels for my beat. However, there are some shows that have book clubs online, they do not have segments on their shows that I am aware of. Channel 4 has an online book club, although I have no idea if they have a TV segment for their book club. ABC has a book club as well, but I found the information online and was unable to find the show on TV. If these shows and more shows like these were easier to access and more prevalent, I feel like they would enhance reading and writing when accessing media. However, for now, I feel like the internet rules the day when it comes to reading and writing media sources.

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Filed under College Assignment, entertainment, Reading, television, Writing

Radio Entertainment

When it comes to my blog, or news beat, I’m absolutely the entertainment girl. Radio unquestionably plays a role in my news beat. Almost all major radio stations have an entertainment reporting section. Listening to Alice 105.9 in the morning, DJ’s Jamie and BJ, have an entertainment news section and their blog updates entertainment news regularly. Tunein is an online radio station that has a page devoted only to entertainment radio, making it easy to find out the latest entertainment news and information.

Having a radio station promote a book, play, or movie can help make or break it for a particular piece of work. One of my favorite authors, Barbra Kingsolver, spoke about her latest book on a radio station I just happened to land on. It is because of that interview I discovered her in the first place and my life and imagination have been truly enriched because of it.

Radio’s role of the news beat has certainly changed over the years. Years ago people did not have television, internet, and movie theaters. The primary way to be entertained was listening to the radio. Instead of listening to the DJ tell them about what the latest and greatest was in entertainment, people could listen to their favorite books and short stories read on the radio. You Tube has some great examples of some of these stories being read on the radio, if you have some time I encourage you to check them out.

I believe the change over the years is caused by the pace of life speeding up. People do not seem to have the time to sit and listen to a story on the radio. Plus, we have to have all of our senses stimulated at once. The fans want 3D movies with surround sound, not two or three people making voices and sounds on the radio. We have gone from hours of listening to a story on the radio, to a couple of minutes listening to a DJ tell us what to read, what to watch, and what to listen to. Radio still plays a role in entertainment, but not in the same way it once did.

NPR has a segment called “Author Interviews” focusing on authors discussing their works and promoting their newest releases. I feel that these interviews are extremely effective in promoting news about the entertainment beat. These interviews allow people a chance to learn about a topic, book, movie, or short story they may never heard of otherwise. It gets the word out and gives new authors a chance.

I’m sure every radio station has an agenda. Even if it is simply to make more money, they all have an agenda. When it comes to promoting authors on the radio, I’m sure it has a lot to do with which person is willing to pay the most to have their book talked about. Or, what author’s work most relates to the agenda of the radio station. For instance, it would make sense for a republican news station to have a republican writer on their show to discuss, gun control, taxes, etc…

The station keeps listeners by giving them what they want to hear, whether it is the music they like, the politics they agree with, or the entertainment they enjoy. That is the only way to keep an audience happy.

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