Friday Fun is a group post from the writers of the NHWN blog. Each week, we’ll pose and answer a different, get-to-know-us question. We hope you’ll join in by providing your answer in the comments.
QUESTION: The Olympic opening ceremonies take place tonight. Will you be watching? As a writer, what kinds of Olympic stories do you enjoy most? Do you have any thoughts about the journalistic challenges of these games?
Jamie Wallace: I will likely watch at least some of the opening ceremonies. I am not, by nature, a sports fan; but the Olympics is an experience on a different level. Though I rarely care much about who wins what, I am – as a writer – always interested in the back stories of the athletes. I never tire of the vignettes that show what they’ve gone through to get where they are. It’s sappy, I know, but I can’t help myself. These stories of struggle and triumph mirror the quintessential hero’s tale – sometimes with the happy ending, sometimes not so much. Watching these young people work so hard and fight with such passion to achieve their dreams never fails to inspire me to continue chipping away at my writing goals. It’s all about heart.
Lisa J. Jackson: I don’t have plans to watch the ceremonies, but I do enjoy watching some of the events. Ski jumping and snowboarding are great. I admire all Olympic athletes for their dedication to their sports. Women’s ski jumping has gotten a lot of press this year — it wasn’t an Olympic sport until recently. For journalistic stories, I’d find it fun to interview individuals and find out what they do to relax, see if they can explain why they’re so passionate for their particular sport, that type of stuff. So many athletes, so little time. I’d thin a big challenge is to give everyone equal time in the press instead of just the favored-to-win athletes.
Diane MacKinnon: I love the Olympics! I was in Canada for the last summer Olympics, and I was amazed at how different the coverage there was from what I was used to here at home. It really got me thinking about how our perspective on the Olympics (and any other event!) is shaped by the media coverage. I, too, enjoy the hero’s saga that is every athlete’s journey to the Olympics. I also really enjoy the artistry of the opening and closing ceremonies and the chance to see another culture’s take on the drama and the pageantry of the ceremonies. I love winter sports, so I enjoy watching almost all of the events at the Winter games. Good luck, USA!
Julie Hennrikus: I will watch the opening ceremonies, for sure. I also have a theatrical eye, so I look forward to seeing how they pull all of this together. That said, the other stories surrounding this particular Olympics are great fodder for writers, especially mystery writers.