2014 - Fall

Reporting the Arts: The Pop Culture Beat

Course Number: JOUR-GA 1231.006

Day & Time: Wednesday, 6:20pm-10:00pm

Location: 657

This course will teach you how to write and report about the arts critically, passionately, and distinctively at a time when there are more platforms than ever available to journalists, but fame is a debased commodity and much of our culture is punch-drunk with its own silliness. We’ll dissect great arts journalism old and new, long and short, in print and online. And we’ll also study bad articles that people were paid thousands of dollars to write to see what they reveal about how difficult it is to get access to a subject, how important it is have an angle you believe in, and how vital it is to develop your voice as a writer. We’ll discuss how to pitch stories, how to negotiate with publicists, how to work with editors, and how to build a career. Guest speakers will include prominent writers and editors, as well as publicists and executives who can give us a sense of what entertainment writers look like from the other side of the fence. Assignments will include a review, a Q+A, a handful of blog posts, and, as a final project, a 3,000-word feature story.