No new is... no news

    Did that get your attention? It's a little tidbit my friend Kally sent me today.

    I spent today beating my head on the wall. Having gone through more than 100 pages of documents, I spent the morning in interviews with a variety of people involved in the insider story. By noon, I knew that the story was not what it had seemed, and by 2:30, I had dropped it. Which meant that the enormous space I had set aside in the paper for this article was now going to be blank space...


    The problem wasn't with the Insider. This person acted out of sincerely held beliefs and concerns and did a brave thing. The trouble is that the behavior that seemed suspicious on paper came with good explanations. Unlike people who have something to hide, every person I interviewed was happy to talk with me, generous with his/her time, clear, willing to answer any question I asked, even the rough ones. No one yelled or threatened or any such thing, which is very unusual for people who have big secrets to hide.

    Now, unfortunately, those who were concerned about the goings on that I investigated will probably be very disappointed. Their essential issue remains, and it's an ideological issue that can't really be resolved through an investigation. Sorry to be so vague, but that's how it is. It's a matter of beliefs, and, in truth, everyone has the same goals in this case (it involves health care).

    So, at 2:30 I had to come up with a full page of content, which I did in about 30 minutes, thanks to wire service. We're running a guest piece about the fact that last year was the deadliest year ever for journalists, with 55 journalists being killed in the line of duty and how freedom of the press is declining worldwide.

    I hate it when I have to disappoint people. I hate it when I have to grill people. I hate it when I have to put something in the paper that is going to tear someone's life apart. But my obligation is to the truth, and today, I went fishing with a very long pole. I even jumped into the water with a net. And I caught nuthin'.

    As Tessa says to herself at the beginning of Hard Evidence:

    If the cops weren’t crooks, that was a good thing. Unfortunately, “Nothing Bad Happening” didn’t make for a splashy sixty-point headline.

    Only one more workday left till I go on my 10-day writing vacation to try to finish my book! I'm very exicted and hopeful that I'll get through a lot of chapters between Thursday and April 2.

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