01 October 2012

Fleet Street Fox

Four weeks into my journalism course and it has been pretty fantastic boombastic. From shorthand to media law and court reporting to getting my first feature published in the Argus newspaper and today a talk that I had been looking forward to for quite some time from the anonymous,Fleet Street Fox. Hard hitting and brutally honest, it was a talk that inspired me to no end while at the same time scared the bejesus out of me. 

To be told that you will be called a liar several times a day, have countless doors slammed in your face, be the victim of the odd punch or strangulation, witness suicide, see corpses and become very accustomed to phrases involving the word 'fuck' and 'aunts' (as autocorect loves to put it) is a lot of information to absorb in 60 minutes. Oh, and did you know that when you're hit by a train at 70mph you're pretty much vaporised and all that's left are little fat droplets the size of skittles? Yeah, you might witness that too. It was at this point I realised she was not joking when she said some people's human-inhuman ratio tips over into mental illness. I think it's clear to see why. 

But I also heard how writing can take you all over the world. How a 3pm phone call could see you on the next train to Edinburgh, or grabbing your passport and heading for the airport, or being on the front line of ground breaking stories, watching and telling history in the making. 

How you can bring down a government, have the press office for the House of Commons or the spokesperson for the Queen on the phone in a flash. 

How you will know information that you may never be able to publish due to ethical and legal reasons but you will know and more often than not you will have the power to tell. And let's not forget experimenting with jaegermeister which seems to be a fundamental journalistic skill. 

People will read your stories, your words, take in the facts that you sourced. And that's why I'm more excited than ever about the career path laid out before me. 

Now I think I'll go get some fresh air like Foxy told me.