Difficulties and successes and all I’ve learn’t

There are difficulties in all aspects of journalism, and as a journalist I have to be able to cope and overcome them. Whilst conducting my interviews for my feature article, I emailed interviewees over a month in advance to organise time for replies and just incase I needed to find a replacement. Unfortunately, one participant, after arranging the interview, never got back to me.

Although frustrating, I realised to be a journalist you need to expect this to happen in real life situations. (Had two extra interviewees, so it was ok.) These organisational skills will be vital as a journalist in the future.

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From this project and blog, I have collected transferable and important skills for online writing shown throughout my posts.

This reflective blog has helped me to analyse problems I have had…

  1. Overcomplicated sentences for one, which I have improved on.
  2. Letting my reader breathe, break up text with images.
  3. Using grammarly.com to help me notice my grammar mistakes.
  4. Hyperlinks, can’t get enough! Easy access for my audience to view what I’m discussing.                                     …and overcome in the unit.

    I feel that keeping a regularly updated blog was beneficial to keep motivated and organised as a journalist for the future.

Learning from Ali Mese

Life grants us with new ways to learn every day.

This week in our multiplatform journalism seminar we studied a blog post called “How I got 6.2 Million Pageviews and 144,920 followers” by Ali Mese. He suggests 4 tips to help you gain more viewers and followers for your own blog. They were discussed in a logical order, using bold sub-headings and images. Not only the content of the text was useful to the reader, but the layout was illustrating his message, backing up what he was saying as a visual.

“Let the reader breathe.” A valid point when writing for online. Reading the post helped me to understand the most important things to consider when writing my posts. Letting the reader breathe means to give them a break between paragraphs so the interest remains throughout the piece. With this in mind, I’ve included a visual element in the middle of my post to show what I’ve learned from Mese.

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The most relevant point for me was to “Keep 25 words to a sentence.” (or less) This may seem over the top to be counting your words, but the idea behind it is simple. To grab your audience you have to keep your sentences short and easy to digest. This is what I shall be trialing in this post, as my previous posts have demonstrated my difficulty in simple sentences.

Feedback is key(words)

Feedback is vital for a journalist to improve.

This week’s feedback consisted of corrections on my grammar mistakes. Immediately I knew that I was still making the same mistake from my last post, one that is important to correct. Proofreading! I shall continue to work on this through the practice of set tasks and take on board peer feedback.

“Removing unnecessary words not only makes sentences more concise but also keeps the word count down.” This feedback was helpful as it is precise, whilst applying information we have taken from our lectures. For example, we must keep the attention of our reader by keeping it short and interactive. I adapted my posts to accurately fit the word count… a vital skill as a journalist.

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As a result, I read over my previous posts and changed them accordingly. I felt it was important to work on correcting my grammar, using the website grammarly.com to help me pick up on my mistakes.

With the morning’s lecture in mind, I picked out specific KEYWORDS in my posts. These are important for not only Search engine optimization but so the piece flows. Therefore, I highlighted the keywords in bold, to emphasise the context that pieces it together. I shall continue to use the feedback every week to build on my skills.

A Good Journalist is a critical one.

As a journalist, we need to be critical of our own work to keep improving, and today’s lecture allowed me to understand this. Danilo raised my attention by putting my last post on the board. He explained how to shorten our sentences, to make them into small chunks that are digestible for our online audience.

Displaying mine and a few other peers’ work on the board, didn’t feel like exposure but a helpful interactive experience. Instead of feeling offended I was prepared for critical analysis, which shows I have already adapted to how to be analytical of my writing. Danilo put up an edited version of the work we had produced. This helped me to consider that a small change makes a big difference, especially as I need to consider my audience.

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As a result, I found it was easier to edit my own work afterward, looking at my previous post in a different light. I became my own critic. (An example of my practice of short sentences.) The key element is to keep it clear but to still include my writer’s voice, which was much more successful. It helped me to write this post easier, enabling my critical self to be proud of my improvements.

My desire to write, write, write…

As Coco Chanel once said, I don’t do fashion, I am fashion.” Embracing who we are is important. We all have to start somewhere, and for me, it was my childhood love for writing. The exciting buzz of letters and words creatively forming in my head like a picture. My desire to be constantly writing was one that people found unusual, so using this talent I pursued my aspiration to be a journalist.

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As technology has advanced through the years, alongside the pace of news and fashion, it only makes sense that journalism too has had to follow. Becoming a multi-platform fashion journalist is how I want to express and broadcast the latest trends and new designers, on a range of platforms. Allowing a wider audience to view online with the inclusion of interactive media. I intend to make progress with my continuous blog to demonstrate this, showing I am versatile for future employers.

“To be critical means to achieve.” My diary is my number one priority, so being organised with work and sticking to my deadlines is definitely my strong point. My writing voice is highly descriptive which can sometimes be to my advantage. I intend to practice my writing skills in this unit, to tackle long, complex sentences. Each week, I will use the tasks set in seminars to focus on the quality of my work by getting into the habit of proofreading.