Dicou: Explore your soul — write for The Chrony

By By Natalie Dicou

By Natalie Dicou

Back when I was a plucky 14-year-old, I realized my town didn’t have a newspaper. My friend Tracy and I decided to launch a bi-monthly publication called the Woodland Hills Chronicle. We called all our neighbors, and by the end of the day, we had amassed 52 paying subscribers (at a hefty $1.50 per issue). I had discovered journalism.

Some of our headlines during the yearlong run included “Dumpster in flames again,” “Citizens saved by CO detector,” “Mutilated deer found” and, of course, our top story in the inaugural issue, “What is that hole?”-an article about a soon-to-be-built fire station.

It was my first taste of the newspaper business, and I was hooked. I spent much of those 12 or so months bothering the city council and searching for news in a sleepy town. The dozen or so WHC issues that still exist after all these years are treasured relics.

It’s strange that I would spend so many years wandering aimlessly around this campus trying to figure out what to do with my life. However, that’s exactly what I did.

After five years of college, I finally found my way to The Daily Utah Chronicle office where I got a job as a sports writer.

Over the past two years, I’ve gotten to do all kinds of cool stuff while working at The Chrony. I’ve watched Ute football games from the press box and sidelines and gone into the Jazz locker room after games as one of many reporters trying to shove a voice recorder into Deron Williams’ face. I was a guest on a TV show, and, one time, I answered my phone and heard a tired, old voice say: “Hi, Natalie, this is LaVell Edwards returning your call.”

I’ve learned some important lessons along the way that I’ll use in my future career, such as this key precept: never become attached to the team you’re covering.

I learned that one the hard way. Immediately after the U women’s basketball team got knocked out of the NCAA tournament by Purdue, I sat in the press box in West Lafayette, Ind.-motionless and utterly crushed-as the other writers packed up their laptops and headed to the press workroom. Two hours later, I was already feeling better. The experience of rehashing the disappointing end through writing had been cathartic.

It was one of the many learning moments I experienced during my time at The Chrony. So (here comes my spiel), if you’re one of the many lost souls out there who know they like to write but have no clue what to do with their lives, consider getting involved at The Chrony. There just might be an opening for a women’s hoops beat writer (contact Tony Pizza about that).

If you do get the job, say hi to Morgan Warburton and Elaine Elliott for me — and whatever you do, try not to get too attached.

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