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Joplin: Our Words, Our Stories, Their Hope Jim Riek

Joplin: Our Words, Our Stories, Their Hope

Jim Riek

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 About the Book 

Welcome to Joplin: Our Words, Our Stories, Their Hope. Im not sure a crew of broadcast journalists has ever attempted such a print journalism endeavor? You may not consider this the best book youve ever read, but it could certainly make yourMoreWelcome to Joplin: Our Words, Our Stories, Their Hope. Im not sure a crew of broadcast journalists has ever attempted such a print journalism endeavor? You may not consider this the best book youve ever read, but it could certainly make your top 10 most creative lists! This is the book youll be talking about for years!The odds of this book being written in the first place were so astronomically far-fetched! In Missouris history, only twice has an EF5 tornado dropped from the sky. Never in modern weather forecasting history have so many people died during a single tornado. Never have two television colleagues cared so much about a story so far away. Take away any of these three factors and the book would not have happened.Joplin: Our Words, Our Stories, Their Hope is co-authored by Jim Riek and Michelle Bogowith. During the 12 months after the May 22, 2011 tornado, the authors made a combined 39 trips to follow the events of a storm, which killed 161 people. Jim and Michelle were employees of KOMU-TV in Columbia, Missouri. Our round trips to Joplin were eight-hour car rides covering more than 500 miles. We didnt fly- we took 8 Goes Green! In the early chapters youll learn about the many adventures in 8 Goes Green.We werent alone! We took television reporters with us, many reporters! KOMU is the most unique television station in the USA! The University of Missouri owns the NBC affiliate. KOMU is a teaching laboratory for the oldest journalism school in the country. Only KOMU could send half dozen reporters to Joplin week after week.I told you this book is creative, youll not only read what the authors remember, but also what two dozen former KOMU reporters remember who have since graduated and now report television news across the country. Our coverage would not have been possible without student help. We relied on students from start to finish. Youll find out why Jim and Michelle werent first on the scene of the tornado and why we werent last on the scene either. In between, youll learn television management and talent dont always agree.Several months after the tornado, I talked to Missouri Governor Jay Nixon during halftime of an MU basketball game. He complimented KOMU for its extensive coverage of Joplin. He told me KOMU had forced the hand of other Missouri television stations to cover Joplin, meaning because of our continued coverage, other newsrooms felt compelled to follow. They didnt catch us, they followed us. When you finish this book youll find that KOMU never stopped covering Joplin, we met obstacles, but didnt give up! Governor Nixon, thanks for writing your foreword. To all the KOMU reporters, who traveled thousands of miles with me, thank you!Todd Tumminia, gold star buddy, 11 trips to Joplin for stories that were so emotional! To Dani Wexelman a great editor, sorry, for all my print journalism mistakes! Finally, to co-author Michelle Bogowith, we really dont need to exchange 15 months of memories here, thats why we wrote Joplin: Our Words, Our Stories, Their Hope! Well let the readers enjoy our creativity.