I’m one of those new graduates who is working for free, dreaming the impossible, still navigating my way into the world of television journalism.
It is hard for most companies to hire and pay employees. Especially with high unemployment, BBC cuts, wage cuts and endless debates on bankers bonuses.
Sometimes I really wonder if there is much work around in my field, considering how many broadcast journalists are on freelance contracts and without work for months on end. At first it seemed unthinkable, now that I’m here, sustaining on tomato packet soups and cheese sandwiches doesn’t seem like a bad idea at all.
Being an intern is hard work – long days, no pay, long hours outside dodgy Libyan visa office, and loads a tea. You’re lucky if fellow colleagues are half-intelligent, don’t take themselves too seriously and easy to get on, else it just makes life a living hell.
I love coming to work at Feature Story News. There’s always plenty of work going around. Apart from current news on Tunisia, egypts youth trying to overthrow their dictator, it’s good to dig into the soft features; Return of the Speak Easy culture and Skatebitch, which I will go into detail in my next post.
At FSN, on 151, Wardour Street, the team is young and crazy, so there’s never a dull moment. Olly is the FSN fashion aficionado and Director for European News Coverage, Nina, cycling pro , China radio star with heaps of international journalism experience, and Catherine, TV veteran and Nature Valley crunchy bar fan, who I see three times a week.
What can I say – they are busy and they keep me busy and make sure I’m not starved, so I feel looked after. It’s amazing going out filming to interviews especially when the weather is great. Knowing my sense of direction, I confidently took Olly to a souvenir shop on Russell Square, instead of Russell Street. He doesn’t trust me since.
Working in Broadcast journalism is a challenge, and trying to get a break a bigger one. On a positive note speaking to most people in the field, I realise everyone has a story of their own, and with persistence and an act of god have made it at some point. A journalist I met at BBC world told me to pray. So I am going to keep my fingers crossed, in the hope of finding some meaningful work that pays me at some point.
In the meanwhile, here’s how I get paid at Feature Story News, a packet of Maynard Wine gums, courtesy Olly, once in a blue moon for some good work. Well, not bad for a start at all!