Not Your Average Moose on the Loose
Is it too late in the year to create a new year resolution? If so, tough. I’m making my own rules tonight. After watching the documentary, One Page, I felt a little inspired because I could see the innards of a news organization that focuses around writing instead of video. I was like, “Hey! That’s what I do! I write! And write! And write!”
The next thing I know, I’m tweeting:
That’s it! That’s my resolution. I want to write better stories. Next step – find a better story.
This means sitting at my desk for a while and digging around in my head for the greatest idea ever. I was not very successful on my very first day in that super motivated attempt.
Well – kind of. I wrote a story about a moose. It was not your average moose on the loose in the Inland Northwest. It’s not like there was a twist ending either.
It was what came up out of conversation in the middle of the woods with a bunch of fish and wildlife officers talking about what happens to moose after they’re tranquilized and re-located.
Sometimes they die.
Tranquilizing a moose for relocation is only a last resort for fish and wildlife. Rahn says sometimes the moose don’t deal with it very well – and it’s even worse during the harsh winter months of January and February.
“When you tranquilize, the moose is released and a lot of times, they get stressed out or they aspirate, vomit and it gets stuck in their lungs. They die of infection a few days later,” Rahn explained.
Television loves moose stories. Sometimes – if they’re lucky – they produce great video. With that said, I never saw the moose, but I still wrote about the experience.
The story went from moose patrol to the procedural behind the scenes methods to keep wildlife and people safe.
Mike read the story and immediately commented with the following: “LOL PAINTBALLS REALLY”. That’s literally what he wrote.
Even my executive producer was all sad about the fate of some moose because media always portrays the re-locations as happy endings, but now we’ve learned that’s not always case.
I realized that I made a hum drum story into something awesome. Or at least I thought it was awesome. After work, all I could talk about was this moose story. This is the first step.
Next step: Fill an entire wall with story ideas written on post-it notes. That way if I ever whine that I have nothing to write about, I can see that I’m full of crap.