AND THEN AGAIN…….by Tamara Pettit

……October 1st – 7th is National Newspaper Week.  While we don’t need a week to tell you what we do (we do that every day), I think we do need to tell our readers how newspapers have changed and adapted to the economy and to our readers. While we still bring you news that’s important to you, we may not bring it to you in newsprint delivered to your door. The news business either adapted or it died, to leave you with a vacuum that Facebook groups can’t begin to fill.

…..  I can talk about journalism from a vantage point of many years ofexperience.  I started at a very young age, dreaming of a career as a “girl reporter.”   I found two of the little books I had written at age 8 W that my Mom had kept.   I keep them on my desk now.   The heroine in those books was Carla Troy, so when faced with a dilemma I can ask myself “What would Carla Troy do?”

…….Well, Carla never gave up and she was committed to reporting the truth to her readers. Carla, however, would have never believed the rough road ahead for newspapers and journalists.  In the beginning newspapers were your only source of information and then along came radio and tv.  But newspapers remained the source where you could obtain more than just a “soundbite.”  While papers like the New York Times had large circulations and often great influence, it was the small community newspapers who reported on the everyday occurrence and often held just as much power and a will to survive..

…….It’s been nine years since we began Hometown News.  And in the beginning, we did it all.  We folded, labeled and lugged the print version toIthe post offices and then delivered to our retail outlets.  Shannon laid the paper out on a deadline to get it to the printer where we were printed at 3 a.m. COVID did many publications in and we struggled while life seemed to working against us. Faced with a divorce, Shannon had to go to work full time so she could no longer adhere to the printers schedule. My late husband’s cancer diagnosis meant I wasn’t able to lug the papers to the newspapers to the post office and many hours were spent at the WVU Cancer Center.

…….Going digital was our only option and it turned out to allow us to bring you up to date news in real time.   I no longer have to wait a week to bring you to the Board of Education or County Commission meeting. Our ability to provide with greater news coverage as it happens and to offer more insight, more information has caused us to flourish and to expand our reach.

…….With Abbi joining the Hometown News, the third generation of our family has knowledge, ideas and enthusiasm that will allow us to grow and give you the newspaper this community deserves. Look for expanded news and more in-depth coverage in the near future as HOMETOWN NEWS brings you the news that matters to you.