Rule Number 1 is to try and not to get killed as it is one of the most terrifying and thrilling career choices ever. As a journalist, you’re a thread steadily dwindling between life and death as your job entails you to bring in everything from breaking stories to unearthing scams. Sometimes, there’s also a dash of glamour and glitz; but all that glitters isn’t always gold.
Your life revolves around tight deadlines, researching, publishing, or broadcasting, and then the cycle repeats. It is like an episode of Dark where things are super confusing at first and then, all of a sudden, it begins to make sense. The best feeling is when you’re at the end of a kickass story, and you feel nothing but exhilarating!
Journalism has been the essence of India since the pre-Independence era. Since then, it has birthed excellent journalists like P. Sainath, Gauri Lankesh, Prannoy Roy, Ravish Kumar, (Not you Arnab), Rajat Sharma, Shereen Bhan, Shweta Singh, and many other notable names.
There are innumerous challenges in the life of a journalist, but that doesn’t stop them from choosing to be the voice of the commoners. That’s what the institutions will tell you, and you know what, that’s just a very stereotypical representation of journalism.
It has evolved over the decades, and as of now, it feels like a spectrum straight out of a prism.
Journalism doesn’t always revolve around politics and economics. Hells, you could be a lifestyle and entertainment reporter, a data journalist, science and technology reporter, sports and health editor, civil or criminal reporter, and more! The possibilities are endless.
One of the many rules in this field is to remain objective and seek the truth, no matter what.
There are a zillion do’s and don’t’s that you will eventually learn, depending on which media house you will work with. But, the ethical part is something that you will have to teach yourself and evolve.
As an aspiring journalist, there’s no need to do a specialized course in Journalism to become one. All you need is a nose for news and the passion for what you do. The zeal to unravel the truth, keeping the ethics in place and you’re all set.
Even if you have no prior experience in writing, editing or being on camera, this is one such field in which you will learn with hands-on experience as you grow in an organization. Just throw yourself full throttle in journalism and watch yourself evolve into a fantastic journalist.
It mainly works for any beat of your choice, but before you start your journey towards it, ask yourself if you’re incredibly passionate about it.
You need to understand that being confident and smart isn’t enough, and you have to prove yourself so that people can trust you. Your primary skills need to include the ability to put in paragraphs together and make a coherent story that informs, reveals, and provokes.
Always remember, as a journalist, you’re in such a dominant position that whatever you say has the potential to influence the mass. So, think and be uphold the oath you take as a journalist to do justice to journalism.
Shireen HonmodeWriter, The Hollywood Tribune | M.A. in Media & Communication
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