Thursday, April 14, 2016

Scott Fallon: An Enviromental Reporter at Work

Scott Fallon at Ramapo College   (photo: Jan Barry)

By Melanie Schuck

When Scott Fallon came to visit our Environmental Writing class, I was interested in what he had to say because of the nature of his career. Since he is a reporter for The Record, he is on top of breaking news constantly. His specialty is environmental reporting.  

He explained, however, that he is not an environmental reporter with the goal of saving the planet. He specializes in it because he is concerned with the health and safety issue of environmental problems. For example, he is more concerned with concentrations of toxic elements in water supplies because it directly affects humans. As a parent, he said that he is concerned for the safety of his child. He is concerned for his child’s sake because of the increasingly toxicity of this world, from cleaning supplies to baby products that claim that they are safe but in reality have dangerous chemicals in them.

Another thing that I found interesting about Mr. Fallon’s talk was how he described his writing and working process. He said that he brings two notebooks with him to an event that he is covering. One is to take notes in and the other is to write down ideas for future stories.

The second notebook is as important as the first because in the fast paced world we live in, stories have to be reported quickly within hours of the event. If they are not reported fast enough then it will be considered old news by the time it is brought to press. The second notebook is also important because if he wants to stay in the journalism business he must constantly have ideas for stories for his editor, otherwise his potential assignments could be given to another reporter.

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