My original script, which got heavily--HEAVILY!--re-worked and reduced.

Journalism Students–Writing of a news story–1st draft & final draft

Published On December 28, 2016 | By Mike Carroll | KCRA-TV, Mike's TV News Stories

On Christmas Day, I posted the news story that I reported, photographed & edited that aired in the KCRA Sunday evening newscasts. In my blog I told of the time that was spent in editing the story and re-working my script to fit into two-minutes.
It occurred to me since posting that for the journalism students who visit this site who have read my book Breaking Into TV News, in which I include the scripts of a number of stories that I have done, that it might be of interest to see what an original first draft script is like, and then to see what the final script that airs is like.
So for the handful of journalism students who are curious about just what a TV news script looks like, here is the news script that I started editing from, followed by the script that I re-worked and that actually aired:

(NOTE: “Cl 01″ refers to the Video Clip that the interview was shot on.)

CARROLL Stockton PD Christmas Morning 12-25-2016

INTRO:

WHILE SANTA SPENT THE NIGHT MAKING HIS DELIVERIES AROUND THE WORLD, BY SUN UP THIS MORNING HE STILL HAD A FEW MORE STOPS TO MAKE IN STOCKTON. AS KCRA-3’S MIKE CARROLL SHOWS US, HE MADE A FEW SURPRISE VISITS, WITH A FULL ENTOURAGE OF HELPERS VOLUNTEERING FROM THE STOCKTON POLICE DEPARTMENT.

CL 05     1.55       Merry Christmas! HO-HO-HO!

WITH THE DAWN’S LIGHT ONLY JUST STARTING TO BRIGHTEN THE CHRISTMAS MORNING, SANTA CLAUS WAS STILL AT WORK IN STOCKTON

[NATS: SIRENS]

AND HE WASN’T TRAVELING SILENTLY.

Cl 65      29.22     I was outside and I thought who they coming to get this time?

Cl 55      25.24     I thought it was a high-speed chase. / Yeah, I thought somebody was getting arrested.

AARON RODRIGUEZ, Stockton
Cl 77 33.57         Sirens around here ain’t nothin’ new.

ST. NICK, Stockton P.D.
Cl 87      41.00     We make a big ruckus when we come in so we can wake everybody up so the kids in the neighborhood can enjoy Santa also and we have gifts for them too.

Cl 18      Merry Christmas. Oh, man. High five. [HIGH FIVE WITH COP & SANTA]

[NATS—Giving a toy]

KRISTOPHER WOMACK, Stockton
CL 27     14.17     I thought something was happening like to somebody. WELL, IT DID. Yeah, we got good presents and stuff. Thank y’all.

THIS MARKS THE SEVENTEENTH YEAR THAT THE STOCKTON POLICE DEPARTMENT HAS BEEN MAKING THESE SANTA DELIVERIES. THE FAMILIES ARE CHOSEN BY OFFICERS AND CASE WORKERS WHO RECOGNIZE PEOPLE WHO ARE IN NEED OF A LITTLE EXTRA CHRISTMAS SPIRIT THIS YEAR.

AARON RODRIGUEZ, Stockton
Cl 77 34.20         Today we go to the hospital today for treatment later on this evening … for his cancer.

ALL THIS IS DONE COMPLETELY ON THE OFFICERS’S OWN OFF-DUTY TIME.

PAULINE KEENER, Stockton Police Department
Cl 89      42.07     All of our time that we put into this is donated by us. So evenings, weekends.

AND EVERYTHING THAT IS GIVEN OUT—TOYS, BIKES, FOOD—IS DONATENICK, Stockton P.D.

Cl 87      40.23     We bring toys. We bring a box of food and pie and a turkey.

Cl 32      16.00     SANTA COMES UP WITH TURKEY Ho-ho-ho. Who’s ready for a turkey?

Cl 33      17.35     It was fun to be surprised and have Santa come into our house.

ST. NICK, Stockton P.D.
Cl 87      39.55     It’s just to help some of the people who’ve been touched by some of the violent crime here in our city, just to make them a little happier.

BRIANA SMITH-HARPER JUST LOST HER FATHER.

BRIANA SMITH-HARPER
Cl 47      21.30     It’s kind of crazy, everybody’s being here for us.

21.56     My dad just got shot. OH. A few weeks ago. It’s been a month.

THE NEED IS GREAT ENOUGH THAT THE STOCKTON P.D. ACTUALLY HAD –TWO SANTA CREWS—OUT MAKING DELIVERIES THIS CHRISTMAS MORNING.

ST. NICK, Stockton P.D.
Cl 87      40.45     There’s a Santa on the north side and a Santa on the south side.

PAULINE KEENER, Stockton Police Department
Cl 89      45.04     Stockton is its own family. You know, when I first started working—even though Stockton is a bigger city, it’s amazing how everybody knows everybody.

STOCKTON IS ALSO A DIVERSE FAMILY. AND THE STOCKTON P.D. SANTA HAS SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE.

FAWAD ALI, Stockton
Cl 78      43.40     Usually we don’t celebrate, but it’s good to see Santa in the morning. And kids are excited. They got the gifts, so thank you so much for Santa and Stockton Police Department.

Cl 64      SANTA AT TRUCK – PICTURES – Hi-Merry Christmas.

Cl 65      29.25     It’s a good thing they interact like this. Y’know what I mean? This is really nice.

PAULINE KEENER, Stockton Police Department
Cl 89      42.35     For me, this is Christmas.

NATS–SIRENS

KARINA CAREENAS, Stockton
Cl 89      37.55     All we heard were the sirens so we were kinda shocked. This is really nice, this is really neat.

Cl 50      22.55     SIRENS

IN STOCKTON, I’M MIKE CARROLL, KCRA3-NEWS.

My original script, which got heavily--HEAVILY!--re-worked and reduced.

My original script, which got heavily–HEAVILY!–re-worked and reduced.

This is the script that I wound up with after making some cuts and moving a paragraph here or that to get the script down to a workable two-minutes.

CARROLL Stockton PD Christmas Morning – EDITED 12-25-2016

INTRO:

WHILE SANTA SPENT THE NIGHT MAKING HIS DELIVERIES AROUND THE WORLD, BY SUN UP THIS MORNING HE STILL HAD A FEW MORE STOPS TO MAKE IN STOCKTON. AS KCRA-3’S MIKE CARROLL SHOWS US, HE MADE A FEW SURPRISE VISITS, WITH A FULL ENTOURAGE OF HELPERS VOLUNTEERING FROM THE STOCKTON POLICE DEPARTMENT.

CL 05      1.55       Merry Christmas! HO-HO-HO!

WITH THE DAWN’S LIGHT ONLY JUST STARTING TO BRIGHTEN THE CHRISTMAS MORNING, IN STOCKTON, SANTA WAS STILL AT WORK.

[NATS: SIRENS]

AND HE WASN’T TRAVELING SILENTLY.

Cl 65      29.22     I was outside and I thought who they coming to get this time?

Cl 55      25.24     I thought it was a high-speed chase. / Yeah, I thought somebody was getting arrested.

AARON RODRIGUEZ, Stockton
Cl 77 33.57          Sirens around here ain’t nothin’ new.NICK, Stockton P.D.

Cl 87      41.00     We make a big ruckus when we come in so we can wake everybody up so the kids in the neighborhood can enjoy Santa also and we have gifts for them too.

THIS MARKS THE SEVENTEENTH YEAR THAT THE STOCKTON POLICE DEPARTMENT HAS BEEN MAKING THESE SANTA DELIVERIES.

Cl 18      Merry Christmas. Oh, man. High five. [HIGH FIVE WITH COP & SANTA]

THE FAMILIES ARE CHOSEN BY OFFICERS AND CASE WORKERS WHO RECOGNIZE PEOPLE WHO, THIS YEAR, ARE IN NEED OF A LITTLE EXTRA CHRISTMAS SPIRIT.

AARON RODRIGUEZ, Stockton
Cl 77 34.20          Today we go to the hospital today for treatment later on this evening … for his cancer.

ALL THIS IS DONE COMPLETELY ON THE OFFICERS’S OWN OFF-DUTY TIME.

PAULINE KEENER, Stockton Police Department
Cl 89      42.07     So evenings, weekends, certain holidays, we get together. And absolutely Christmas morning we all come out.

AND EVERYTHING THAT IS GIVEN OUT—TOYS, BIKES, FOOD—IS DONATED.

Cl 32      16.00     SANTA COMES UP WITH TURKEY Ho-ho-ho. Who’s ready for a turkey?

BRIANA SMITH-HARPER
Cl 47      21.30     It’s kind of crazy, everybody’s being here for us.

BRIANA SMITH-HARPER JUST LOST HER FATHER.
21.56     My dad just got shot. OH. A few weeks ago. It’s been a month.

PAULINE KEENER, Stockton Police Department
Cl 89      45.04     Stockton is its own family. You know, when I first started working—even though Stockton is a bigger city, it’s amazing how everybody knows everybody.

STOCKTON IS ALSO A DIVERSE COMMUNITY AND THE POLICE DEPARTMENT SANTA CREW HAS A GIFT FOR EVERY CHILD.

FAWAD ALI, Stockton
Cl 78       43.40     Usually we don’t celebrate, but it’s good to see Santa in the morning. And kids are excited. They got the gifts, so thank you so much for Santa and Stockton Police Department.

Cl 64      SANTA AT TRUCK – PICTURES Hi-Merry Christmas.

Cl 65      29.25     It’s a good thing they interact like this. Y’know what I mean? This is really nice.

PAULINE KEENER, Stockton Police Department
Cl 89      42.35     For me, this is Christmas.

NATS–SIRENS

Cl 50       22.55     SIRENS

IN STOCKTON, I’M MIKE CARROLL, KCRA3-NEWS.

 

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About The Author

Mike Carroll joined the digital revolution in 1999 with a Sony TRV900 camcorder and Final Cut Pro, when it was only Final Cut Pro and not version 2, 4 or a Suite.

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