Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

One Year in the Sun Yields Thousands of Work Hours and Tons of Memories

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

One Year in the Sun Yields Thousands of Work Hours and Tons of Memories

Article excerpt

Byline: kevin clark

I turned the key to the door and stepped into an office lighted only by the cloudy daylight penetrating the front windows. The walls were freshly painted and new carpet appeared to have found all the right nooks and crannies underfoot, though a few excess pieces lay cluttered against one wall.

Eight cubicles and desks were put together for the most part. The copy machine sat silently against a wall, a testament to its scheduled delivery the day before. Two small conference tables sat unorganized nearby.

This was the St. Johns Sun three weeks before the first issue hit the streets on April 15, 2005.

Actually, months of planning among dozens of important people in offices, conference rooms and speakerphones had happened elsewhere, but this silent room was where the real product would take shape. I recall, or rather I'd prefer to remember, that the air that day bore the fragrance of new and exciting times to come.

The few of us around in the early days soon sat down to talk about the first issue. We weren't sure how many pages we'd have to fill, but figured it wouldn't be too large considering how new we were. Having folks really get to know you takes time no matter how firm or fast the first handshake is, but initial impressions do count for something.

We soon learned we underestimated the excitement in our arrival. The section would be 56 pages, a tall order to fill for one reporter, an office receptionist, one page designer and one editor -- all armed with meager experience in community newspaper production and an overabundance of enthusiasm.

All of us agreed photos were a must. Sun reporter Terry Brown, being an accomplished photographer, set about finding shots that captured the essence of the area, from little league games to flora and fauna. …

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