Little Steps

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

On Monday I took my first two small steps towards my dream career. There's something so satisfying when something clicks and you realise what you want and what to focus your energy on. A normal Monday at university for me is carrying out an NCTJ journalism exercise or doing research for my patch story which is all newspaper based. I'm 99% sure that I don't want to work for a newspaper, the blunt and to the point style is so not me. I'm more of a long winded, wordy person with an obsession for Star magazine, so the magazine industry is the direction that I'm heading in.

This Monday consisted of something we haven't focused on in a news session before - magazine design. I played around a little bit with magazine covers in A-Level media, but this was creating a bog standard music front cover which was pretty dull, not to mention tedious. The task on Monday though was entirely different and so much more up my street. I generally enjoy uni, but I thoroughly enjoyed this session, and when I say thoroughly I mean I could have sat there for the remainder of the day designing covers on Quark XPress. Design was never really something I'd considered before but it has most definitely sparked something within me that wants to learn more.

This doesn't however overtake my passion for writing. I think I've just realised that I'd quite like to write for magazines and do a little bit of page design on the side. Last time I checked I wasn't an overly creative person, but this whole magazine thing has got me fired up and I practically have creativity bursting out of my ears. By this I'm not saying my work is amazing, just that I've got lots of ideas that I want to play around with and see what I can do. Let's call it putting hand to mouse and putting some of the sketches and ideas in my head onto a blank computer screen and going from there.

Another little step I took this week was getting an article published in Platform magazine which is the uni magazine. I didn't manage to get involved last term but I realised that I needed to start doing something productive with my spare time like getting practice and experience, so after a couple of emails I started writing up my first piece. It was about cheap alternative Valentine's gifts which I really enjoyed, and to top it off the editor didn't change any of my work, she only added in one extra sentence which was quite the compliment. I mean I know it's not an article in Star or Heat but it's certainly a start. It's showing that I'm willing to use spare time to write for free just for the publication. To me, that is an achievement, I'm being pro active and thinking about the future instead of leaving it until the last minute.

After not knowing what career path I wanted to take until a short while before actually applying for university, I feel incredibly content in the degree that I'm training for, and I'm actually looking forward to learning from my mistakes, because I feel this is what guides me towards my strengths and towards what career I want to go into. I'm determined to keep working for Platform magazine, keep playing around with Quark Xpress and gradually build up a portfolio so I have something to show for myself, something that I'm proud of.

Here's a screen shot of my article on the Platform website and here's the link in case you want to have a look.

Here's also a screen shot of my first attempt of magazine design. The image is obviously from Google as we only had an hour to complete this, but the magazine name and design is all my own. I'll keep working on different magazine designs to try and develop one that's of a really high standard

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