What Journalism Teachers Say

PROF. ARI L. GOLDMAN, Columbia University Graduate School Of Journalism:

“How do you come up with story ideas that readers will love and editors will buy? 

That is one of the hardest things to teach young journalists. But when you hand them a copy of ‘News to Me’ by Barry Newman they learn that there are stories in seltzer bottles and in police sirens and in the corner post office and even in the humble banana. 

I’ve used ‘News to Me’ to teach my students about good journalism and vivid writing. It’s fun—and it’s a hell of a lot cheaper than a real textbook! Enjoy!”


MARK KRAMER, founding director, Power of Narrative Conference (www.bu.edu/com/narrative), Professor of Practice in Narrative Journalism, Writer in Residence, Journalism Dept., Boston University:

“News to Me” is a delightfully written self-analysis of the intimate journalism techniques developed by a pathfinding reporter, one of the early innovators of narrative journalism in his front-page Wall Street Journal columns. I use the book as teaching companion to my own widely assigned standard text on narrative writing, “Telling True Stories,” (edited with Wendy Call). “News to Me” is not only sage and practical, it’s also funny. The young writers in my seminars love it.”  


CHRIS ROUSH, Walter E. Hussman, Sr. Distinguished Scholar at University of North Carolina School of Media and Journalism:

 “Barry’s book ‘News to Me’ should be required reading for any journalism student. He’s one of the legends of the past half century, and his tips on writing and reporting are valuable to anyone who’s learning the craft. He relates well to young people, who soak up his wisdom.”


SUSAN SHAPIRO, author and professor of writing, New York University and The New School:

“It was a pleasure to have Barry Newman speak to my New School journalism class about his great book ‘News to Me,’ which we read and interviewed him about. He was very smart, helpful and inspiring to my students.”


HEIDI NOVIK teacher of English and journalism, Scotch Plains Fanwood High in Scotch Plains, New Jersey:

“Hearing from a Wall Street Journal reporter like Barry Newman was an invaluable experience for my journalism students. He spoke candidly to my class about the journalism world and his writing process, and they left feeling inspired and invigorated to tell new and interesting stories. Newman’s book ‘News to Me’ would be the perfect addition to any journalism or writing classroom library. His stories can serve as mentor texts, or jumping off points for lessons on feature writing.


BARBARA SELVIN, Associate Professor, Stony Brook University, School of Journalism:

 “Barry’s book has helped my students recognize when a passing thought is the germ of a story idea, that ‘Huh! Why is that?’ moment that can lead to a great feature.”


SUZANNE SATALINE, Lecturer at Columbia University, University of Hong Kong, City University of New York:

“I used ‘News to Me’ teaching an undergraduate feature-writing class at the University of Hong Kong’s Journalism and Media Studies Centre. Newman’s loopy sense of story, not to mention his cockeyed, persistent push to discover the ‘why’ of the world is infectious for students. This is a collection that inspires and rouses young writers.”


TYLER KELLEY, guest faculty, Journalism + Design Program, The New School:

“I taught ‘News to Me’ in my combined printmaking and journalism class for The New School’s Journalism + Design program. Barry Newman’s book makes great journalism seem accessible, and gives readers the sense that story ideas are all around them. My students particularly liked the ‘Huh?’ chapter. Everyone knows what it feels like to see something that makes you say, ‘What the…?’ ‘News to Me’ helps students realize that delving into this basic instinct can lead to seriously good writing.”


PAUL GLADER: associate professor of journalism at The King’s College, Director of the McCandlish Phillips Journalism Institute.

 “Newman walked our students through feature writing in the hallmark style of the Wall Street Journal’s ‘A-hed.’ Reading his work and seeing how he does it inspires the students to aim for this kind of reporting and writing.”