Chelsea & The City: Covering the Boston Marathon bombing

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I never really thought I would be part of covering a tragedy like the Boston Bombings. You can never be prepared to cover something as horrific as last week’s events. There is no pre-written obituary or finished layout ready to just replace, “Headline goes here.” There is no plan — it’s breaking news.

When something so sudden and tragic happens, the platform of a weekly print newsmagazine is not the most timely. Sure, the website will be overflowing with breaking information and stories will be written around the clock, but it’s not the same as having a print product in your hand the next day spelling out everything that happened. But, until things started to heat up on Thursday, no one really knew what happened. We didn’t even know who the suspects were.

Download this special edition of TIME magazine.

The decision was made to put out a special edition tablet issue covering everything we did know at the time. Of course, the news would change over the next few days, but we were able to use the platform of the iPad to cover the events that had happened, share opinions, hear people’s personal stories, see touching photos and commemorate those lives lost. Everything was written, edited, designed and out
the door within about 24 hours. We usually have a week to put out a normal issue, but it was an incredible experience to see everyone come together under such tight deadlines and work so quickly and efficiently.

I am so proud of what we produced and that I was able to have a part in it. This experience really reminded me of why I love being a journalist so much. It also proved once again how important the platform of the tablet is in today’s media. Every single person that works at TIME is incredibly talented and I feel so blessed to be working side by side with them every week – and especially on a project like this.

—Chelsea

(Chelsea Kardokus is a freelance designer for TIME magazine in New York City. See more of her work here.)