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(Kevin Van Paassen)
(Kevin Van Paassen)

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Comment Q&A Add to ...

Ken DeLuca, Arnprior, Ont.: Natasha, do you accept the 750-word submissions you spoke of for review by the whole Editorial Board or just yourself as editor of the Comment page? You say credentials help, but are such submissions welcome from your general readership as well as journalist colleagues? Assuming anything I submit met editorial standards as you detailed ('Variety and timeliness, a strong argument, a fresh opinion, clear writing'), can I assume my 750-word offering might be considered?

Natasha Hassan: Ken, you can rest assured that I read all unsolicited submissions - either e-mailed to me directly, or to comment@globeandmail.com - and that they are all given serious consideration.

As my colleague John mentioned earlier, a common error is that readers send him column submissions for the op-ed page. Just to be clear, the editorial board and op-ed page are separate domains, and so Editorial Board members do not review submissions.

Josh Turner, Toronto: I notice that you have semi-regular contributors on the op-ed page such as Timothy Garton Ash and Irshad Manji (two of my favs). Do they submit articles to you regularly or do you request pieces from them to see if they have anything of interest?

Natasha Hassan: Josh, you will be happy to hear that both write exclusively for The Globe and Mail in Canada. Irshad is wonderful to work with: She is a nimble and smart commentator and we collaborate very well together, often on breaking news stories, with requests and pitches flowing in both directions. Timothy, meanwhile, writes a weekly column for his UK audience and so I have less input into the subjects he selects for his columns. That being said, his thoughtful, European perspective on the issues of the day is always a welcome addition to the page.

Guy Nicholson: Time is running short, so I'll put one final question to our editors before they go back to their day jobs. This one comes from a regular contributor to the op-ed page.

J.D.M. Stewart, Toronto: I would imagine that being an editor can be a lonely job at times. What is the best part about your job, Natasha and John?

Natasha Hassan: "Lonely," James? How could I be lonely when I get to work with some of the smartest thinkers and writers in the country? Exhausted is more like it. And yes, that is the best part of the job.

John Geiger: It's not lonely on the editorial board. What I like about the job most is the sense of camaraderie. In former incarnations I've worked as a national editor, a news features editor, a foreign editor, a reporter, a columnist, but there is no other job at a newspaper quite like being on an editorial board. The meetings are invariably the best part of the work day; it's a chance to talk about important ideas with a group of intelligent people. And then there's the sense of responsibility that comes with having meaningful input into some of the important questions of the day.

Guy Nicholson: That's it for today. Thank you to everyone who submitted a question - including those we couldn't get to - and to John, Natasha and Jim for taking time out to help readers better understand how this part of The Globe and Mail works.

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