Notes from a Notebook: The Student
November 3, 2010 8 Comments
We all know how desperate you are to see the innermost thoughts, plans and desires of the Hacks, but rather than making you wait until one of us leaves a notebook on a train (it could happen), we thought we’d introduce a new series: ‘Notes from a notebook.’
If nothing else, it’s a chance to see the scribblings of five Mad Men (not in the cool way like our avatars) but mad in the sense of wanting to get into journalism at this point in time. It also proves that there will always be room for a good notepad however dominant emails, iPads and smartphones become.
Up first, the decrepit diary of The Student.
1. Contact details for patch stories – A list of people I needed to contact for various stories as part of my patch file: a series of local news articles on Clerkenwell for my MA. Includes the boss of security at City University London and the project manager of some brickwork done on an old university building. Nothing glamorous but important to chase up those leads once you get them.
2. ‘Shorthand on the train’ – Speaks for itself really but demonstrates what a journalism MA can be like. The train/tube/bus may not seem particularly suited to learning (especially if your standing up, sandwiched between the unwashed armpits of two strangers) but that twenty minutes can be vital. I’ve certainly become used to using this valuable time wisely.
3. ‘The Obama Syndrome’ – Another patch related scribble, this time about a free event happening in the Free Word Centre on Farringdon Road. I had intended to go in case anything interesting was said or (rather hopefully) if protests broke out. Alas, I had to prioritise other things but again it demonstrates that an MA is anything but 9-5.
4. Notes on the below talk – I jotted a few notes down about a talk (see below) put on and chaired by Dominic Ponsford, Editor of the Press Gazette, the journalism trade mag. The standout points were the need for a personal blog with your own URL (which adds to your online presence) and the need to make yourself stand out with list posts and podcasting, forms of bloggin massively underused still. There’s also a few names on there which I hadn’t heard of before; Martin Stabe (online editor of Retail Week), Rafat Ali (founder of PaidContent) and Jason Calacanis (an American web entrepreneur) who are all worth checking out.
5. ‘How to make a blog into a job’ – This was an event I had put in my diary many weeks before. With an esteemed panel of Josh Halliday, Dave Lee and Conrad Quilty-Harper I wondered how their forays into blogging had helped to gain them employment and their respective presentations were very worthwhile.