A Magazine by the Society of Professional Journalists


Quill Blog


July 11th, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog, Journalism Education
Excerpt: Bio explores pioneering AIDS reporter Randy Shilts’ wounded heart/determined soul

Randy Shilts was one of the pioneering reporters covering the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco. With his book, “And the Band Played On,” his voice helped shape mainstream understanding of not only the disease, but of gay culture. In an excerpt from his new book, “The Journalist of Castro Street: The Life of Randy Shilts” (University of Illinois Press), Andrew Stoner, an assistant professor at California State University, writes about his personal connection to Shilts and his work. 


June 24th, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog, Freelancing, Journalism Education
Excerpt: In “Talk to Me,” a lesson learned on the importance of interview location

Whether you are a seasoned vet or a newcomer to the field, it’s never a bad idea to refresh or rethink your interview skills. In an excerpt from Dean Nelson’s recent book, “Talk to Me,” the forty-year veteran journalist whose byline has appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, and more writes about his “tactical error” in interviewing Mexican president Vicente Fox and what he learned about the importance of location.


June 3rd, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog, Quill Archives
110 Journalism Movies, Ranked

Hollywood helps define just about everything in America. And journalism is no exception. From “Citizen Kane” to “The Post” and from “Libeled Lady” to “All the President’s Men,” reporters have clashed with editors, danced on both sides of the ethical line, and otherwise populated hits and duds on the silver screen.


April 18th, 2019 • Quill Blog, Quill Archives
Impactful Pulitzer-winning journalism undermines ‘fake news’ claims

The news stories that won Pulitzer Prizes this week show the benefits of having journalists free to tediously dig through records, analyze volumes of data, interview sources under dangerous circumstances and widely share their findings. They show how good journalism can help people understand issues that directly impact their lives.


March 19th, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog, Journalist on Call
Sacramento residents assess media coverage in wake of Stephon Clark shooting

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Residents across Sacramento said they generally are pleased with the breadth and accuracy of the local news media’s coverage related to the death of Stephon Clark, a 22-year-old unarmed black man killed last year by two police officers.


March 13th, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog, Quill Archives
110 journalism landmarks for the 110th. Your input requested.

This fall, SPJ continues the celebration of its 110th anniversary with a special print issue of Quill devoted to 110 landmark moments in American journalism. From the first newspaper in America to the publication of the Pentagon Papers and from the printing of the Federalist Papers to the document dumps of Wikileaks, we are looking for the moments that shaped and defined the Fourth Estate.


March 12th, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog, Quill Archives
SPJ calls on Congress to pass strong Federal Shield Law

Each day, journalists throughout the country are working tirelessly to inform their readers what the government is up to. The free press is one of the most important pillars of American democracy. By reporting the truth, reporters allow the citizenry to elect leaders that represent their values and ideals and craft laws and policies that they believe in.


January 24th, 2019 • Featured, Quill Blog
Bad week for journalism can have long-term impact

Journalism is wrapping up a bad week — a week of mischaracterizations in news reports that further tainted the credibility of the industry.


January 21st, 2019 • Quill Blog, Quill Archives
Is news without names the new normal?

Anonymous sources — one of journalism’s most powerful tools — are also one of its most dangerous.      Almost every journalist has received a request for anonymity. A source calls up promising a big scoop or an untold story with one condition: that his or her name not be used in the story.  


December 19th, 2018 • Featured, Quill Archives, Membership, SPJ Works
Jailhouse journalism sheds light on life behind bars

It’s a Saturday in mid-September and Nigel Poor and Earlonne Woods have just released Episode 1 of Season 3 of their hit podcast, Ear Hustle. The deadline for Episode 2 is in about 10 days, episode 3 two weeks after that, then four through eight, every two weeks through the end of the year.


December 18th, 2018 • Quill Blog, Quill Archives
It’s not too late to apply for summer gigs

Don’t have an internship lined up for 2019? Don’t fret. Some places still are accepting applications so get working on your cover letter and resume. WSJ. Magazine “The WSJ. Magazine internship program is aimed at undergraduate and graduate students who intend to pursue a career in magazine journalism.


December 18th, 2018 • Featured, Quill Blog
How to (still) land a summer internship

  Application deadlines for spots next summer at many of the largest (and paying) media organizations have come and gone. For students still looking to land an internship, there’s still time, especially at smaller companies and in newsrooms with new programs.