Editor’s Note: You are capable of more than you think

By Brooklyn Kiosow, Managing Editor

About a year and a half ago, you could usually find me spending my afternoons at home or a coffee shop, book in hand, sipping an iced coffee.

But just over a year ago, in January, I started working at the Chronicle, and it not only changed how I spent my afternoons but also my perspective on how I defined myself as a writer.

When I applied, I didn’t exactly know what I was getting myself into. However, I knew I liked to write and edit, and I needed a job.

I began as a copy editor, and I had to ask other editors a lot of questions. As soon as I got the hang of it, though, I was excited when articles popped up at the copy desk. I was eager to grab them and make sure all the facts were straight.

I worked as a copy editor from Spring 2020 through the summer before I was offered the position of copy chief, meaning I had proven I knew what I was doing and had what it took to be the editor, answering questions instead of asking them.

By January of this year, I was promoted again to managing editor, and I was elated. I was going to be the first person that read incoming articles about everything from the Immersive Van Gogh exhibit to changes in the Cinema and Television Arts Department.

I had already been helping to publish articles, but I was also pushed to write more. After I got one byline, I was hungry for another. It quickly became about making each article better than the last.

As I move into a new position once again, I am excited and a bit nervous to be co-editor-in-chief alongside Mari Devereaux. She and Kendall Polidori, the previous co-editor-in-chief, have worked so hard to set an example of what EICs are capable of.

They have worked until nearly midnight some Friday nights perfecting the E-editions, and they seem to know the right questions to ask to make an article that much better.

I don’t have a background in journalism, and I know this is unusual. I’m a graduate student in the English and Creative Writing Department’s nonfiction program. I write essays—sometimes about goldfish, and other times I compose observational pieces on the body.

But over the last year working for the Chronicle, I have found a new love for being a part of a newsroom. When I started as a copy editor, I saw how important copy editors are to the process of getting an accurate, clean story published. When I moved into a management role, I understood that the questions I asked reporters pushed them to think about their next story more critically.

And now, as I step into the role of co-editor-in-chief, I am thrilled to expand my knowledge and skill set.

As co-editor-in-chief, I hope to not only fill the enormous shoes Polidori is leaving behind, but also to push new reporters to see what they are capable of. With a background in creative writing, I hope to bring a different set of eyes to articles.

I am eternally grateful Travis Truitt, our general manager; Curtis Lawrence, our faculty adviser; and both Devereaux and Polidori saw something in me that I’m not sure I even saw until starting at the Chronicle.

When I was asked to step into the role of co-editor-in-chief, I didn’t hesitate to accept. This wasn’t because I knew I could do it or I wasn’t afraid, but because I am eager to be an integral part of what makes the Chronicle so great and to continue to grow alongside the Chronicle team.

I started out as a copy editor, unsure of what it meant for me, and I’ve learned I am capable of more than I think—we all are.