Star talent continues to shine

Dateline: Sun 15 Feb 2009

Despite furloughs, the specter of advertorial work and threats of job loss, talent at the Indianapolis Star continues to shine brightly.

Two stories qualify for Church of the Newspaper consideration: Konrad Marshall's wonderful and yet disturbing profile yesterday of the Anderson woman who married 23 times, and Robert King's always-thoughtful, sensitive re-creation of the awful I-69 pileup in the whiteout two weeks ago, with details about those involved and those who died.

Marshall's story was a true-old fashoned feature with loads of texture: I felt like I was right there, in Linda Wolfe's little apartment in Anderson, with the dusty plastic roses, crucifixes on the coffee table and pack of Maverick 100 cigarettes (along with medicine). Marshall did an excellent job of capturing this Hoosier woman's folly while at the same time presenting her as a real and fragile (if flawed) human.

King's undertaking was massive: first to get inside the heads of those involved in the pileup, then to get the timelines of so many players lined up. His premise -- that small decisions can change everything -- was equally human and moving.

Anyhow, good jobs.

One can, however, skip the travel story by Dennis Ryerson's ex/wife (?) Mary Milz of TV Channel 13...I personally find it irritating, at a time when so many writers are looking for work, that the Star should choose to run a travel story by a well-paid TV reporter. But then, there never was fairness at the top. No doubt, another inside job.

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