Thursday, April 18, 2013
Dealing with snags
The newspaper business is deadline driven.
The South Reporter and the Pigeon Roost News, our two weekly products, are printed by the crew at The Oxford Eagle.
The South Reporter second section and the Pigeon Roost News both go to press on Mondays. Our weekly goal is to finish both of those by Monday at 5 p.m.
The first section of The South Reporter goes to press on Tuesdays by 5 p.m.
Most of the times we succeed in meeting these deadlines. Occasionally, we hit a snag. Sometimes, our good friends in Oxford hit a snag. But we always seem to work through it – such as last week.
Tuesday morning, April 9, I received a call on my cell phone at 6:15 a.m. from Eddie at The Eagle. Typically when I get a call that early, I know there’s a problem. Such was the case this time around.
A piece of equipment in Oxford had broken down. He said if the problem could not be remedied soon, they would seek an alternate route.
When things go smoothly, we have the Pigeon Roost back in our office by 8:30 a.m. on Tuesdays to start stuffing advertising circulars inside.
This time, with the Oxford crew having to get help from our newspaper friends in Batesville during the crisis, the Pigeon Roost News was back at our office several hours late, about 1 p.m.
I know the Oxford folks were stressed (as they had their daily newspaper to get to press, too). The folks on The South Reporter end were stressed, too. We had another deadline to meet – one set by the post office.
Through teamwork and fast work, we made it through – getting the Pigeon Roost to the post office in plenty of time – and all was just fine.
Tim, from The Eagle, was even kind enough to deliver our second section to Holly Springs.
As all this was going down Tuesday, we also found out that due to the problems in Oxford, the first section of our newspaper would have to be printed at the Signature Offset facility in Olive Branch.
This was a first in my 12 years at The South Reporter.
Every single edition, since I came on board as publisher in July 2001, has been printed at The Oxford Eagle.
We had to make some last-minute adjustments to the way we save and send pages. We got some good help in that process from friends at The Eagle, the Calhoun County Journal and Signature Offset.
During all this time, we continued proofreading, finishing pages and so on.
Our deadline, despite the crazy day, was still set at 5 p.m. I told the kind man at Signature Offset that we might be a bit late but we’d for sure make it by 6 p.m. We made it by 5:30 p.m.
It was great getting an e-mail from Signature Offset saying the pages looked fine.
The Olive Branch facility printed the paper Tuesday night and then delivered it to Oxford, where my driver picked it up early Wednesday morning, as usual.
We received word today (Monday) that things should return to normal this week as far as the printing goes.
Whatever the case, we know that due to the dedicated staff here and great working relationships with other nearby folks in the business, your community newspaper will be in your hands in a timely manner once again.
Thanks for your help each week in helping us meet our deadlines.
We’re deadline driven.
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Holly Springs, MS 38635
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