Emus Loose in Egnar: Big Stories from Small Towns
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Emus Loose in Egnar: Big Stories from Small Towns

3.47 of 5 stars 3.47  ·  rating details  ·  34 ratings  ·  17 reviews
At a time when mainstream news media are hemorrhaging and doomsayers are predicting the death of journalism, take heart: the First Amendment is alive and well in small towns across America. In Emus Loose in Egnar, award-winning journalist Judy Muller takes the reader on a grassroots tour of rural American newspapers, from an Indian reservation in Montana to the Alaska tund...more
Hardcover, 264 pages
Published July 1st 2011 by University of Nebraska Press
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Evan Brandt
Gave up on this promising puppy.

Loved the subject, and the first two chapters were bearable, b ut it lost steam, she kept using the same examples and I lost interest.

When you consider that I'm in the business and SHOULD be more interested in this, that's pretty sad.

It was written like a milquetoast feature story in a second-rate weekly.
Dana Stabenow
How big is your town? Big enough to support it's own weekly newspaper? If not, you're missing out. As witness, from the Concrete Herald (Washington state) police blotter:

January 9 (2010): People caused a traffic hazard on State Route 20 near Marblemount because they were standing in the road, taking pictures of eagles. (That's right: IN the road). A deputy checked the area and also notified the Washington State Patrol and Darwin Award Officials.

It's a hundred entertaining pages more before we ev...more
Judy Muller’s “Emus Loose in Egnar: Big Stories from Small Towns” is an interesting piece of reportage about small-town newspapers and their editors and reporters. It was published by the University of Nebraska Press in 2011.
Muller, who has worked as a correspondent for CBS, ABC, and PBS, points out that while newspapers in medium and large cities have seen their advertising shrink and have experienced layoffs, the small-town press is generally doing quite well. She also points out that small-...more
Disclosure of a personal prejudice: The author is a friend.

Judy Muller does a great job of reporting about reporting for small town newspapers. She delves into the delicate balance between serving the higher cause of truth while managing to stay in favor with advertisers and readers ... and when your circulation is 600, many of them are the same people. Do you print them names on the police blotter, perhaps revealing that your biggest advertiser got a DUI over the weekend?

She travelled the cou...more
Mar 23, 2012 Liz rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Mom (if feeling nostalgic)
Who knew that there is a sector of American newspapers that is doing well? I never would have guessed that small-town weeklies were holding their own in the 21st century, but apparently in the West, at least, they are. This was an entertaining, quick read, if a bit more regional in scope than I had imagined (lots of focus on land use, natural resource and Native American issues). I made running mental comparisons with the weekly newspaper I grew up with, which indeed devotes many of its pages to...more
Really great book about the trials and tribulations of running a small town newspaper. The author traveled around the country talking to those on the front lines of small town newspaper journalism. From North Carolina to Washington, Judy Miller has told the stories of current newspaper reporters and editors, as well as those who came before. She mentions the bravery of many of the journalists, but also highlights some of the injustices and prejudices toward the journalists. It will make you root...more
Scottsdale Public Library
While big city newspapers lose readers to online sources and television, small town newspapers are thriving. This book shares rousing, thought-provoking, and sometimes funny stories about the newspapers themselves and the proprietors/editors/reporters (often all the same person) tangling with the issues and difficulties of living among the people they're reporting about. The author showcases these journalists as they range from censorship problems to big corporation corruption to cranky neighbor...more
Harriet Wrye
I love this book. Judy Muller is a national journalistic treasure--sapient, witty, incisive and devoted to truth in print and healthy journalism. I kept reading passages out loud to my husband then had to fend him off from taking the book off my nightstand. Muller writes with passion and savvy about small town newspapers and their dedicated publishers. I found it inspiring to hear their stories. It made me appreciate so much more the challenges they face, the courage with which they pursue their...more
David Ward
Emus Loose in Egnar: Big Stories From Small Towns by Judy Muller (U. Nebraska Press 2011)(071.3) - what a great title! This book sounds like so much more than it turned out to be! In browsing the library shelves, I thought I had located a collection of odd but true news stories from small midwestern towns. What the book actually is, though, is an overview and travel tour of weekly newspapers. I was disappointed. My rating: 2/10, finished 10/5/11.
I didn't finish this book as it wasn't exactly what I had in mind when I checked it out from the library. Muller's writing is very good, but I was looking for more funny stories than facts about the small newspaper industry. I may give it another try later on.
A fun little work about small-town newspapers, written by an editor of a small-town newspaper, that nicely outlines the joys and sorrows of such enterprises. Ms. Muller is an excellent journalist and she writes like one, Quick read and most enjoyable.
Enlightening and fun to read. I've been working at a small town paper for more than a decade and this book definitely clarified many parts of my job for me.
A loving (if occasionally condescending) tribute to small-town newspaper-ing. Worth reading for the chapter on obits alone.
Brent Bill
A delightful book about small newspapers -- the EKGs of tiny towns and rural counties across the land.
Dec 24, 2012 Sue rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: culture
This is a must-read for anyone who lives in or used to live in a small town.
It's alright, but didn't keep my interest.
I wanted to heard more about the emus.
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