Georgia Student: Deadline Writing ‘One of the Bloodiest, Most Soul-Eviscerating Activities Known to Mankind’

In a new column so meta it almost explodes, Red & Black staffer Julia Carpenter writes about the rigors of writing a column on deadline.  In between repeated word count updates, the University of Georgia junior compares journalistic deadline writing to drug abuse and calls it “one of the bloodiest, most soul-eviscerating activities known to mankind. It’s really messy and I hate it.”

She openly muses about vapid ways to increase the column’s word total, including the insertion of extra adjectives or a “half-imagined anecdote.”  She admits to grabbing whatever sustenance is nearby to help her cope with the “full-body experience” that is deadline writing, including “drinking the shit out of this Vitamin Water.”

She also lies multiple times in the column and then almost immediately admits to lying, blaming the deadline pressure.  As she notes, “Oh my God, y’all.  Why am I telling so many lies?  You know why?  Because writing under deadline turns me into a horrible, manic person.  A harlot and a liar.  Well, the harlot part isn’t true.  See, I lied again.”

At the close, she admits: “I’m over word count and two minutes late.”

It’s an interesting piece.  I’ve reached out to Carpenter to inquire about any serious deadline writing tips she might be willing to share.

 

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  1. […] a recent Red & Black column, University of Georgia student Julia Carpenter described deadline writing as “one of the bloodiest, most soul-eviscerating activities known to mankind.  It’s really […]