Journ. 130: Prof. Craig: "Boring" Stories


Some examples of stories deemed boring, pointless and otherwise unappealing by students from previous semesters: 

  1. Staff Uniform Changed - The staff in the bookstore at San Jose State will be changing their uniform. Currently, they wear regular clothing; some also wear a blue apron. However, they will now be wearing a blue staff shirt…with a collar! Staff will begin wearing the shirts as soon as they come in.

  2. Park & Ride Lot to be Repaved - The Park & Ride Lot on Seventh St. and Humboldt Street will be repaved over the week of Christmas. Repaving of the Park & Ride Overflow Lot on 10th St. is also being considered for the same time. This will not affect students, as it will start and finish during the Christmas break. Money was donated for this project and will not increase the cost of Park & Ride Permits.

  3. The Fish Tank Merchant - A large store specializing in tropical fish has opened in the neighborhood. It sells fish, tanks, food and accessories. The store claims to be unique in that it is the only retailer in the area selling a recently produced system that cleans fish tanks automatically. The store’s owner, a successful entrepreneur, has contacted our newspaper suggesting we send a reporter to cover this “revolutionary” new cleaning system. Faced with a quiet news week the editor relents and sends a reporter to investigate the new store.

  4. Banana sticker collecting - These people actually collect the stickers that are placed on bananas - 19 different banana sticker collectors actually met recently for a mini-convention in Munich, Germany. First of all, if only 19 people met for a convention, that just goes to show how little interest there is in the story. This story would be so horrible because if someone went all the way to Germany for a convention about it they are probably pretty intense about their collecting. This is a story that you certainly would have a hard time taking seriously and would probably hope that your subject understands that.

  5. Chewed Celebrity Bubble Gum - Stories on chewed celebrity bubble gum are boring and pointless. Just thinking about someone picking up a person chewed up gum is disgusting. I would think that the only way to keep it in the same way that it was discarded in is to pick it up with one's bare hand. A tissue or a paper towel will get stuck to the gum and using something to poke the gum will change its form. Therefore, the only way to pick it up is with your bare hand. Yuck! Besides readers don't need to know how much Britney Spears used bubble gum sold for. It's just pointless and a waste of time to read. Who cares about used celebrity bubble gum? I sure don't.

  6. Scanned Images of Vending Machine Candy Bar Wrappers - A story on scanned candy bar images would be a boring and pointless thing to write about. Readers don't need to know about websites that scan images of candy bar wrappers. If one really wants to know what a candy bar wrapper looks like all they have to do is buy one. There are many vending machines around that have a variety of candy bars. Besides most candy bars have been around a long time and people have been exposed to them; therefore, they already know what they look like.

  7. Obese squirrels on campus - This is actually a story idea I suggested to the Spartan Daily last semester not thinking the managing editor would take it seriously. He did assign the story and thankfully it was not assigned to me. Basically, squirrels eat Cheetos and other junk food students leave behind and get fat. Since squirrels are not showing up dead all over campus because of clogged arteries, this is a non-story.

  8. The implementing of a new stop light in town - This is just an awful read, and I can't imagine there are too many things to report on. You have your subject basically and then the opinions about it from people in the area. It is hardly exciting, and most of the time it will either make people really happy or really upset.

  9. Sandwich Expert - A local has written a book about the history of the sandwich. He is holding a reading at a local bookstore. Our editor thinks the topic has broad appeal and sends a reporter to investigate the sandwich historian and his findings.

  10. New soap to be used in SJSU restrooms - Instead of the beautifully fragrant pink soap in the restrooms of SJSU buildings, the school has signed a contract with a different soap supplier. The new soap will be purple instead of pink and will smell worse than the current soap, but it will get the job done nonetheless.

  11. Pencil production - I actually read an article about this once (I think at the dentist's office) and both the topic and the writer were fall-over-dead-boring!!  It talked about the measurement that the technology will cut the wood and the process that puts the graphite into the pencil. I don't think many people are interested especially since more people are using mechanical pencils and pens now.

  12. Business as usual - The status quo isn’t news. If a town has nothing going on and every day drags on in utter similarity, who needs to read about it in the paper? A boring place makes a boring story. There would be nothing quite as dreadful as having to write about the lack of news to write about.


Back to the top of the page
Back to Richard Craig's Home Page
Send comments and thoughts to