Stepping stones for a new journalist
If you had asked me six months ago where I thought I’d be today, I never would have guessed attending local events, interviewing interesting people and writing about the adventures I experience every week.
Since mid-March, I have considered myself a reporter and a journalist. It is not because of my expertise or education, but because I have found an environment I think I can thrive in. Hopefully, it can develop into a career. My first month writing for The Compass was difficult, but not because I didn’t enjoy what I was doing. It was tough because there are so many complex rules and styles of writing that were completely unknown to me before I began my new position.
My mom always told me she writes something out 10 times before she knows it’s good enough for people to see. I don’t have that luxury. I am pressed with tight deadlines, difficult stories and writing for an audience who did not just experience what I did, yet I have to make them feel like they were there.
My writing has been torn apart, flipped upsidedown, rearranged and glued back together, but it was all for the better.
I finally realized that’s what needed to happen, and that my words are not always glitter and rainbows on paper. I had to check my ego at the door. As hard as learning to properly structure my language was, my biggest struggle has been with the art of photography.
My sister and brother have used professional cameras for several years now, and never once has it dawned on me to pick one up and try it out.
I just assumed if the time came and I had to use it, I would be great at it.
Sure, that seems a little narcissistic, but I have always been good at just about everything I have done professionally, until now.
The camera is your friend. The camera is your friend.
I keep telling myself that, but honestly the camera has been a very hard transition for me, even with the consistent help and motivation from my fellow editorial team members.
In fact, I fear it will be my downfall when judgment day comes.
Some days, I sit at my desk wondering how I got here, and why is it I am able to pass on these informative, interesting and usually wonderful experiences to local residents.
I feel like I have the tools at my disposal to grow and succeed in this business, if my photography doesn’t chew me up and spit me out first.