January 14, 2016 / Coverage

Consider ways to expand your coverage

Written by Evan Blackwell, CJE

When your yearbook staff got organized for this year and mapped out the coverage for this year’s book, hopefully you set out a plan for what you wanted to cover and how you planned to cover it.

Now about halfway through the school year, you can see how that plan is coming together. In the “Coverage: The Heart of the Yearbook” unit of Walsworth’s Yearbook Suite curriculum, author Jim Jordan outlined how there are a variety of secondary coverage elements that allow you to go beyond the basics and provide a richer experience for your readers.

Are you using secondary coverage packages in your book? Take a look at this sampling of secondary coverage examples from the Coverage unit:

  • Q&A – The question-and-answer format is perhaps the easiest and most popular secondary coverage element. All you need to do is develop strong questions that relate to your spread topic that will give you great information from a wide variety of your student population. It also is an easy way to involve a member of your staff. Each staff member can be required to go out and record several responses daily.
  • Quotable quotes – Staff members gather these quotes overheard daily on campus from students. Sometimes, quotes overheard on television and in news stories may be included if they have been heard by a number of students or they are part of the local or national culture.
  • Quizzes – Quizzes are a way to add humor. Topics like, “How to know if you are a freshman” that are followed by a series of questions and then specific responses are given point values that put the reader into a specific category. There also can be a serious application.
  • Timelines – Use timelines to show how specific events about one topic relate. They are sometimes used as divider pages in chronological books.

What are some examples of secondary coverage that you have used in your book? Share them in the Comments below.

Evan Blackwell, CJE

Evan Blackwell, CJE, is a writer and editor for walsworthyearbooks.com and a regular contributor to Idea File magazine. He's been a marketing copywriter for Walsworth Yearbooks for the past 12 years, and is the author of the Yearbook Suite's "The Art of the Interview" unit. Prior to joining Walsworth, Blackwell spent five years as an award-winning newspaper and magazine journalist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.