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A common experience after writing an article is that once it’s published, people come out of the woodwork to tell you things you wish you had known. It doesn’t matter that you spent weeks reporting in the first place.

Usually these readers reach a reporter by email or in the online comments. But the other day I had the rare and rewarding experience of meeting them in person, at a forum The Times organized in Jackson, Mich., to follow up on a profile I wrote of a young factory owner there. I came away wishing I’d interviewed many of the Jackson residents who turned out. It’s not that I would have changed the thrust of my story. But the extra voices added richness and depth.

Readers in Michigan: We Need More Skills, Not More Jobs

After an article is published about a “job creator” in a state that voted for Donald Trump, new on-the-ground conversations add richness and depth.


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