For this week’s Meet the Media, we’d like to introduce you to Michael Moore, arts and entertainment reporter for the Kitsap Sun.
1. How did you find yourself writing for the Kitsap Sun?
I came to the Sun in 2001 to work on the presentation desk following almost 20 years as a sports writer for papers in King County, including the late, great Journal-American in Bellevue. When the arts and entertainment beat — which included editing a weekly tabloid A&E section — opened in 2005, I was interested because of my love of the performing arts, and the opportunity to move into a schedule that worked better with being a single parent. I guess I had the combination of skills they felt they needed to fill the job.
2. Which of your stories are you most proud of?
I’ve gotten to interview a lot of celebrities, but I’m most fond of stories that tell about interesting local folk who contribute to the arts scene. Like community theater buffs who contributed their talents and countless volunteer hours to a number of area playhouses, or the musicians who work full-time, then spend hundreds of hours rehearsing to perform with Kitsap’s two excellent symphony orchestras.
3. What is your favorite thing about your job?
I enjoy knowing that I can steer people toward local arts and entertainment opportunities and events that they might enjoy and might not otherwise have been aware of. People appreciate knowing they can find good music, theater, art and literary events without having to jump a ferry to Seattle.
4. What is your interview style?
My interviewing style depends on the type of interview I’m doing. On the phone with touring artists headed to our area for a performance, I try to be very prepared and knowledgeable about what they’ve been up to and I try not to waste any of the time they’ve granted me. At the same time, I try to be as informal and conversational as possible so that it’s not just a drag for them. With the local, volunteer musicians, actors and artists, I try to show respect for the work that they do and build trust. It can be awkward interviewing the guy who bagged your groceries the day before, or who teaches your kid’s music class, so I try to make sure to keep people at ease.
5. What do you look for in a story?
I like stories that I think all readers will find interesting, not just the people involved in what I’m writing about. I’d like to think that anyone, whether they were into the local arts scene or not, could sit down and read my stories and be informed and entertained by them.
6. What is your day like at your job?
Lots of details, lots of research, lots of time updating schedules and calendars and making sure we’re not missing anything we should be letting readers know about. With the rise of the Internet and social media, there’s a certain amount of repetition, too, as you re-tool and reformat material to post on different platforms. Scheduling, preparing for and doing interviews is part of every day, too. I also spend a lot of time in the car, covering an area that stretches from Port Townsend to Gig Harbor.
7. Who do you most look up to in the journalism industry?
People who tell the truth. People who can involve me in a story. People who take pride in what they do without being narcissistic.
8. What is your favorite news outlet?
Anywhere I can feel like I’m getting the truth, and some balance and diversity. I’ve liked “60 Minutes” for a lot of years, and I have NPR on all the time. Rolling Stone has a lot of good, diverse content and a great internet presence.
9. Fill in the blank:
- If I am not reporting, I am… Raising my teenage daughter, taking care of the house, walking the dog, finding time to go see live music and theater and writing projects outside of work.
- If I could interview anyone, it would be… Living or dead? John Lennon.
- My favorite thing about Seattle is… Bumbershoot, the waterfront, the Seattle Center and the monorail, the U-District, Safeco Field and Pioneer Square. Mostly that it’s all only a 60-minute ferry ride away.
Check out last week’s Meet the Media where we spotlighted Kristin Ackerman Bacon, the publisher and CEO of Sip Publishing. Sip Publishing includes Sip Northwest Magazine, CIDERCRAFT Magazine, Sip’s Wine Guide: British Columbia, and Tasting Cider Book.
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