PODCAST PREVIEW: Rachel Hamburg: “You have to be a hustler” as a young journalist

My favorite part of the Telling The Story podcast is the final part.

This is where my guest, young or old, offers advice and insight for young journalists entering the field.

At age 32 I consider myself somewhat in the middle — still (I hope) on the younger half of my career, but definitely far beyond the inexperienced journalist I was in college. As a result, I always enjoy the “time capsule” lessons my guests hope to impart on those who are just beginning their careers.

In this case, my guest actually is a young journalist.

Rachel Hamburg is 25 years old and barely two years removed by Stanford University. She may also wince at the idea of being called a journalist in the traditional sense; she participates in journalism, and storytelling, on very innovative and abstract levels. Currently she works as the managing editor of the Stanford Storytelling Project, a thorough and multi-platform college storytelling program in which, among other things, students produce an hour-long radio show and podcast called “State of the Human”.

The podcast is extremely impressive: almost like a college-level “This American Life”, filled with youthful sincerity and detailed attention to the individuals interviewed by the students.

I enjoyed my entire interview with Hamburg, but I specifically appreciated our back-and-forth at the end, where we reached the section about advice. She spoke about the challenges of entering this industry — and the need to which, as a young journalist, “you have to be a hustler.”

“You just have to kind of make it work these days,” she said, “and I don’t know if that’s going to change. But I still think it’s very possible — and I think there are lots of ways for it to be possible, thanks to crowd-funding and stuff like that.”


3 GREAT STORIES: The NBA Finals, and innovation in sports coverage (Part 2)

Every week, I will shine the spotlight on some of the best storytelling in the business and offer my comments. “3 Great Stories of the Week” will post every Monday at 8 AM.

This year’s NBA Finals have been outstanding.

How? Let me count the ways.

  1. Two great teams: the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs
  2. The individual stars (LeBron James, Tony Parker, Dwayne Wade, Tim Duncan, and more!) with legacies on the line
  3. The role players stepping up and performing wondrous feats of strength
  4. The seemingly endless number of storylines popping up every night
  5. The series’ complete lack of predictability

Simply put, the Heat and Spurs have given us a classic NBA Finals so far.

They have also compelled the sport’s numerous journalists and bloggers to step up their game.

With great moments come great opportunities for innovative and memorable journalism. I already used this space last week to show how sports coverage has both improved and diversified with the advent of the Web. The great work continued this past week, so I decided to provide an encore of great — and inventive — reporting of this year’s NBA Finals.

Experience LeBron James’ block on Tiago Splitter in 24 different ways (6/10/13, If you are even a casual sports fan, you probably saw what has fast become one of the most famous blocked shots in NBA history.

Click on the link to this story, and you can immerse yourself in LeBron James’ famous block.

People always talk about how, in today’s media landscape, we have so many options that we do not really unify over big moments anymore. But the diverse landscape also allows us to magnify those moments. This article from The Score’s basketball blog, The Basketball Jones, exemplifies this by compiling the various photos, videos, and angles of James’ block into one mammoth, defining blog entry.