Victoria Nugent

A writer, a reader, a daydream believer

10 things you don’t learn about being a journalist at university September 22, 2013

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  1. The first time someone rings you to yell at you, it probably won’t be because you have written something defamatory. It will be because you spelt their mother’s name wrong.
  2. It is incredibly rare to get a good quote from a teenage boy. If you want a good quote, ask their teacher about how much potential they have.
  3. You will come to loathe vox pops rapidly and with a fiery passion.
  4. Those Facebook stalking skills you have will prove to be incredibly useful.
  5. Learn to pack your lunch. Some days you will be so busy that going out to grab something seems like a valuable waste of time. Also, lunches are expensive and journalists are not known for being well-paid.
  6. When sources, suggest that you get a coffee you should try to make the time. You never know if they are going to give you a tip for incredible story. Even if that’s not the case this time, it may be down the track simply because you made the effort to connect with them.
  7. You will express the need for a drink before midday on a surprisingly regular basis. Don’t worry; your colleagues will do the same thing.
  8. How many cups of coffee do you think you’ll buy during the week? Double it.
  9. There are many people who don’t understand the concept of news and will think you can’t be trusted not to report every mundane detail you hear. These are the people who will share some gossip about their friend’s divorce/battle with prostrate cancer/ affair with their neighbour and then say,” Oh, but please don’t do a story on it”.
  10.  Some days you will think longingly of finding another profession. Being a waitress or a shop assistant  may even look like good options. Other days you won’t be able to contemplate the idea of doing anything else for a living.