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At El Estoque, each story must clear six edits before being published — an exhaustive process that ensures that each story meets our publications standards for concise, bias-free, informative and unique stories. 


We keep track of edits using the Pitches and Edits Spreadsheet, a centralized tool that allows staff to plan their stories in order to meet their deadlines, log their sources, keep track of their process and pitch new stories. 

The Arts & Entertainment section of the P&E spreadsheet inclues pitches, working stories and tabulates edits

The Arts & Entertainment section of our P&E spreadsheet allows the whole publication to keep track of pitches, the progress of stories, document links and editors work. 

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Our social media and deadlines calendar create a central resource for staff to stay on top of their work. 

The angle edit is the most crucial determinant of a story’s success — it is where interview questions are edited, the specific angle that a story is taking is honed and sources are verified. As a Features Editor and this year as Co-EIC, I’ve placed a lot of emphasis on the angle edit. During our weekly editor meetings, we have all section editors explain the angle that each staff writer is taking with their story. This holds section editors accountable for keeping track of their staff writer’s progress, prevents overlap in stories and ensures that all stories are based on pitches that are set up for success. 

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Our Editor Meeting notes from a meeting where every section editor shared their pitches to clarify angles. 

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Before writing my story about a Mexican immigrant family in our community I fleshed out the purpose of my story with the Angle edit

Our main method of communication is Slack. This year, I decided to create Copy 1 and Copy 2 channels to streamline communication through the edits process. This allows staff writers to know where they are in the queue and holds us as editors accountable for completing edits in a timely fashion.  Previously, writers would simply privately message a head editor and would have to wait until that specific editor had time to edit the story. With the #copy2channel, the first available co-Editor-in-Chief was able to edit the story as quickly as possible, which reduced the average time that writers had to wait to get edits.

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The #copy2requests channel of our Slack ensures that the first available  EIC can edit stories and we are held accountable for finishing edits within 24 hours. 

As both a section editor and Co-EIC, I have approached edits with two main goals: to ensure smooth mechanics and also that the story is broadly serving a purpose. For mechanical errors, I check for AP Style, ensure that quotes and transitions aren’t repetitive and focus on concision. For stories that require more broad edits, I give staff writers specific action items to work on before they resend their story to me. I always tell them to clarify their angle, identify the purpose of their story, and ensure that they are fact-checking all their claims. This ensures that writers are approaching their stories thoughtfully and keeping their angle in mind as they write and edit. 

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I left several types of edits on stories, from grammar and mechanics to helping reangle  or shift the focus of the story. 


Our editor team presented our leadership philosophies to our staff at the beginning of the year, and the word I chose was courageous. It’s reminiscent of my first days on El Estoque and it encapsulates perfectly the type of leader I strive to be. As an editor for all three years on staff, I’ve pushed myself to have the courage to try new things and uplift every voice on staff. 

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A central aspect of my leadership philosophy is organization. As a Features Editor and now as Co-EIC, I stick strictly to a daily agenda. Daily section and class agendas ensure that our editor team is communicating with each staff member — an essential and often challenging prospect throughout remote learning — and allow us to use class time effectively. 

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As a leader, I also hold myself responsible for teaching my staff as much as I possibly can. Over the summer, I was a part of the prestigious Medill-Northwestern Journalism Institute, where I learned lessons from some of the most renowned journalists in the country. I wanted to bring that experience to El Estoque, so we instituted breaking news conferences — a weekly occurrence as a Cherub — and I taught mini-lessons to the class based on what I’d learned. 

I also believe that it is essential that section editors are given a platform to present mini-lessons. As the people responsible for the first round of edits on all content, they are often able to identify issues that never make it to the heads team. During the beginning of the year, for example, many new staff writers were having a lot of trouble angling stories so that pitches were relevant, timely and covered an informed stance. We decided to have the section editors create a presentation on Opinion writing to teach the class, which galvanized them to also create an editorial checklist that staff writers continue to use today. 

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When we discussed solutions to the issues we were having with editorials in our heads team meeting, I suggested that the Opinion editors present a mini-lesson the class. 

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The Opinion editors created an engaging presentation and an editoral checklist that continues to get used today. 


I’ve always considered El Estoque my home away from home, and though we were trapped behind Zoom screens during junior year, I fostered a sense of community. Equipped with my bubbly personality and online games, my section and I found joy in dressing up for Halloween as stuffed animals, calling outside of class to find the perfect colors for our package or just talk about school.


I struggled with cowriting immensely on my first story. I didn't understand how to write with someone as a team. I was paired with our Editor-in-Chief at the time, and I was terrified to ask for help. 


I ended up using my cowriter's transcriptions, the story angle description we'd written together and the outline she's drafted to write the entire story by myself. Though the story incorporated both of our ideas, the final product didn't play to both our strengths as writers — instead, it utilized my writing and her editing, a mistake a learned to avoid in the future. 


I’ve always considered El Estoque my home away from home, and though we were trapped behind Zoom screens during junior year, I fostered a sense of community. Equipped with my bubbly personality and online games, my section and I found joy in dressing up for Halloween as stuffed animals, calling outside of class to find the perfect colors for our package or just talk about school.

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As a Co-EIC back in person, we reinstituted “Family Fridays,” an ongoing weekly tradition where an EIC or Managing Editor leads a class-wide game. With our myriad of games that focus both on section bonding and allowing our staff to talk to people they normally wouldn’t, we’ve continued to foster a strong sense of community. We also bond as a community during our Late Nights, our monthly after-school sessions hunched over InDesign spreads. As we desperately fight to finish our pages, we bond over snacks, jokes and the troubles of pesky orphans and widows (the formatting type).

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