Readers of Adyar Times would have noticed three bylines which appear off and on.
Pranathi Diwakar, Vrinda Manocha and Rhea Banerjee.
These three girls are school students and they attend schools in the same neighbourhood, that is Adyar.
The three also attended the summertime Journalism Course that our newspapers run annually.
What set them apart from the others was their persistence in putting their skills into practice.
The three girls have been reporting and writing for the 'Adyar Times' fairly regularly. And though studies take much of their working hours, they do venture out to do stories.
And they seem to be enjoying the experience, though Rhea made a mess of a report on a community event once and couldn't get over it for days!
( I wonder if she expressed her fears in verse. Rhea also has a blog of her poems).
Our weeklies - Adyar Times, Mylapore Times and Arcot Road Times - have always encouraged young people to write.
Many years ago, we began the practice of reserving one issue in November for the contributions of children of the neighbourhood.
But we have been particular that these contributions are local reportage.
Many children on this annual programme have enjoyed the experience. One joined the local police inspector on his night patrol; another jumped on to a fire engine on a SOS call. And another spent time at a patasala.
This year, we decided to extend this programme. Which means all those who are invited to be part of it will get the opportunity to contribute reports all through November.
And to prepare these bright sparks, we intend to host a short training session at our offices. We hope the kids will pick up skills like thinking of a story idea, identifying local issues, making appointments, interviewing people, taking down notes, writing news reports . . . .
So, if there are school students out there who would like to join this programme, you should sign up now.
And be prepared for some hard work.
Bylines for good stories!