- Written by Brennan Murray
- Published: 21 August 2013
Ten weeks ago I was anxious about how little I really understood about Duxbury and how that may inhibit me from giving the Clipper my best work.
I didn’t know about the amazing games residents or- ganize at Sinnott Field for youngsters with special needs or the beautiful ospreys that nest at nearly every bend in the Back River.
I wouldn’t have been able to tell you the story of two exchange students who fell in love with Duxbury Beach or of a special dog that dedicated his entire career to protecting Duxbury’s people.
The only thing I truly knew was my favorite spot in the Nook, where I had spent countless low tides taking in the sights and searching for stripers in the channel. Had it not been for the Clipper’s decision to hire me as a summer intern in June, I would still be ignorant as to what makes Duxbury tick. More than any- thing, I would have missed out on meeting the passionate and generous people who are remarkably common within this town’s borders.
In my two-or-so months coming into the Clipper’s office on Monday, Tuesday and Friday mornings, I have been lucky enough to sit in a news- room with two thoughtful and talented writers, whose approaches to news and journalism have provided me with valuable lessons on how to first find a story and then do it the right way. They have taught me that doing the “little things” well, from politely taking phone calls to choosing the best possible word for an article, helps make a newspaper great.
Everyone is friendly at the Clipper. The staff’s encouragement kept me wanting to produce high-quality work week after week, something I hope I accomplished. I always thought it would be cool to work for a small paper, but working for the Clipper far exceeded my expectations.
My favorite stories to write this summer were the ones in which I got to tell someone else’s story. Ben Franklin said, “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” There are countless people in this town whose lives and accomplishments warrant a book. I’m honored to have at least written some short prequels.
If I could only take away one lesson from my internship, it would be that being a good listener is one of the most valuable skills a person can have. I believe a lot of what we know and live by is a product of stories we’re told. I like to think that the more stories I listen to, the wiser I’ll become.
“Take the time to be brief,” one Clipper colleague always said about writing. He was right. To the Clipper, though, and it’s talented crew who helped make my summer an excellent one, I would like to offer a lasting thank you.