It is currently Thu Apr 24, 2014 5:07 am

All times are UTC [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 26 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

So, am I crazy or what?......

Sponsor

Sponsor
 

Author Message
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Oct 03, 2012 8:26 pm
Posts: 36
There are numerous posters on here who obviously know a great deal about (and have extensive experience in) journalism. May I pick your brains if this applies to you?

After 40 years as a (male) nurse, I'm going to retire in May at the age of 58 and hope to go to university to study 'Journalism and Practical Media'. This is a two year Foundation Degree which would also give me accreditation with the NCTJ.

I've always wanted to pursue this career from leaving school, but I'm afraid working class boys from my neck of the woods had to get out and get a job to bring money into the family, so it never happened. Until now of course - I never expected it would happen, especially so late in life and after becoming a grandfather.

Anyway, my aim is to get into freelance work focusing on health issues (inspired by the bilge that appears in the pages of The Daily Mail, whose health correspondents appear to be unable to decipher even the most basic research reports). I'm also a sports fanatic, and especially like cycling & rugby (both codes) so hope to maybe do a little of that too.

I don't need to earn a huge amount - it would be basically to top up my pension, so I'd be happy if I could make £700 a month once qualified & with a bit of experience. I know it will be a little strange studying alongside others who are young enough to be my grandchildren, but I'm sure I'll cope. Getting by on £300/month for a couple of years will also be a challenge for me and my wife, but I'm hoping to do some nursing agency work to supplement the student maintenance loan.

So, do you journo types have any advice at this early stage? All contributions welcomed and gratefully received.

Or am I tilting at windmills here? Be straight, be brutal, be honest!

Many thanks folks. :)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:20 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 11:46 pm
Posts: 26377
Location: Back in Blighty where the feckin' internet works...
A PM to Smod might be useful, if he's still reading them.

_________________
When we return to government we have to stress that we are one nation, undivided in our respect for all of our citizens, supportive of those in need and welcoming to the troubled and persecuted.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:21 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:59 pm
Posts: 3149
Location: N Wales Compound, EUKSSR
A friend of mine did the NCTJ course recently, it's very comprehensive and quite tough. You need to be able to do shorthand above a certain speed, for example. You're also expected to learn about stuff like the detailed structure of local and national government, corporate law etc.

I'm not suggesting by any means that any of it is above you, but you should certainly be aware that it's very much a 'Jack of all trades, master of none' style of training, with a great deal of tedium involved.

That said (speaking as a journalistic layman) your end result sounds realistic and potentially useful. You should, however, anticipate being ordered into writing sensationalist crap, or having your work carved beyond recognition by sub-editors into expressing bizarre views that you do not hold.

_________________
Soppy anti-British, pro-crime, anti-education, pro-immigration, anti-family nonentity


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:28 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:59 pm
Posts: 1266
Location: Wonderful Manchester
Moir's Wig wrote:
I don't need to earn a huge amount - it would be basically to top up my pension, so I'd be happy if I could make £700 a month once qualified & with a bit of experience.

You might struggle on this front. I think my starting wage (albeit in 2005) as a full time hack was £10,500, which included having to work plenty of 60-70 hour weeks.

Of course, there's some opportunities, but most journos starting out have to do plenty of free work. Sports writing is very, very competitive to get into, for obvious reasons.

_________________
Pointless thoughts can be read at http://www.thetediousworld.blogspot.co.uk/


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:32 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2007 11:59 am
Posts: 14980
Location: Up my own arse.
D.C. Harrison wrote:
Sports writing is very, very competitive to get into, for obvious reasons.


Sorry, DC, but what are the obvious reasons?

_________________
"If you cannot convice a fascist, acquaint his head with the pavement"


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:40 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:59 pm
Posts: 1266
Location: Wonderful Manchester
Abernathy wrote:
Sorry, DC, but what are the obvious reasons?

I'm perhaps just projecting my reasons for wanting to write about football. Namely, I love the game and wanted to be involved: seeing games, interviewing players etc. I would guess a lot of others feel the same, although with different sports.

I suppose there's also the chance you'll get to travel too, if you get one of the top gigs in mainstream media.

_________________
Pointless thoughts can be read at http://www.thetediousworld.blogspot.co.uk/


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:22 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Nov 26, 2009 1:56 pm
Posts: 2281
I can give you the benefit of my limited experience from a related field - as a freelance copy editor who dabbles in a bit of copy writing when the opportunity comes up (and that's not often), it is still a lot of time down to luck - right contacts, right place right time and so on. You'll need to be aware that you'll come up against closed doors and will get more dead ends than job leads. You'll also probably need to do a fair bit of gratis work to get a portfolio. And you may need to be flexible and do related jobs to keep things ticking over (for example, when I first went freelance I did some godawful database tidying jobs).

That said, I admire anyone having a crack at doing what they want to, so best of luck (I've just spent £250 getting my first children's book illustrated and have self-published it. I probably won't ever break even, let alone make a profit, but I wanted to do it for myself and mainly my daughter and I have, and that's the main thing).


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:27 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 11:46 pm
Posts: 26377
Location: Back in Blighty where the feckin' internet works...
Crabbsie - that's a really cool thing to have done. Much kudos.

_________________
When we return to government we have to stress that we are one nation, undivided in our respect for all of our citizens, supportive of those in need and welcoming to the troubled and persecuted.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:35 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:59 pm
Posts: 1266
Location: Wonderful Manchester
Malcolm Armsteen wrote:
Crabbsie - that's a really cool thing to have done. Much kudos.

Aye, I'll second that, and also everything else in the post. Having the right contacts and good luck is vital in that game.

_________________
Pointless thoughts can be read at http://www.thetediousworld.blogspot.co.uk/


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:41 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 3:23 pm
Posts: 1009
crabcakes_windermere wrote:
I can give you the benefit of my limited experience from a related field - as a freelance copy editor who dabbles in a bit of copy writing when the opportunity comes up (and that's not often), it is still a lot of time down to luck - right contacts, right place right time and so on. You'll need to be aware that you'll come up against closed doors and will get more dead ends than job leads. You'll also probably need to do a fair bit of gratis work to get a portfolio. And you may need to be flexible and do related jobs to keep things ticking over (for example, when I first went freelance I did some godawful database tidying jobs).

That said, I admire anyone having a crack at doing what they want to, so best of luck (I've just spent £250 getting my first children's book illustrated and have self-published it. I probably won't ever break even, let alone make a profit, but I wanted to do it for myself and mainly my daughter and I have, and that's the main thing).



What's the book about and where can I buy one Crabcakes? Mailwatchers across the country could request it from their local library service too, that could help.

Have a Dogmatix.

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:44 pm 
Offline
Lord of Flangebury-Under-Scythe
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2010 1:33 pm
Posts: 5381
Yeah, what Squeaker said.

It's not about elephant police though?

_________________
MY COMMENTS ARE FROM THE HORSES MOUTH AND ARE ALL FACTS


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:46 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Nov 26, 2009 1:56 pm
Posts: 2281
Ta all - bung me a PM if you want book details (I'd rather not stick up links openly, as you never know when some vindictive nutcase troll will be along to act like a twat).


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:49 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 30, 2010 5:49 pm
Posts: 10770
Location: Durham
That's excellent Crabcakes. Fingers crossed for you.

_________________
That subtle admixture of the absurd and the surreally plausible...


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:12 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 1:07 am
Posts: 2367
Location: Lancashire
I took my NCTJ course ten years ago and freelance occasionally. I found it comprehensive and extremely interesting.

Feel free to drop me a PM if you fancy a chat.

_________________
"If the past really is a foreign country, I'm surprised that 'The Daily Mail' would want to live there.” - Roger Quimbly


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:53 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 11:46 pm
Posts: 26377
Location: Back in Blighty where the feckin' internet works...
Book ordered, Crabs. That'll be a happy, monkey-obsessed grandson.
I hadn't realised that this was print on demand - so no print runs to fund, no overprints, in fact the same process as when I get Apple to print my photo albums and calendars. A truly excellent idea. Good luck with the venture.

_________________
When we return to government we have to stress that we are one nation, undivided in our respect for all of our citizens, supportive of those in need and welcoming to the troubled and persecuted.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 26 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group