Upon arrival I was greeted by the lovely Emma McBryde and her fiancee Juan (honestly can’t remember his last name :S).
I am lucky enough to not have to pay for accomodation during my stay in Rockhampton.
They provided me with my own room which has been great.
Having arrived on father’s day I was left to my own devices to find entertainment while they were with Emma’s parents.
So me being me, I decided to watch The Expendables 2, which was incredibly profound.
Anyway, the newsroom of The Morning Bulletin.
It is similar to my last internship in many ways, but it is more relaxed in some ways.
I found this surprising for a daily.
Everybody works hard, works to deadlines, but things run relatively smoothly, seldom is there panic if something is yet to be done.
It is as if everybody knows that a solution to any problem in the newsroom will reveal itself in some way.
So far I have had many firsts. I’ve had two stories appear on the front page (but they are not the front page story) which has been great.
In the Tuesday paper I had my biggest story ever.
It was my own contribution which I had come up with during my evening shower.
In short the story was an interview with an Afghan man who had collaborated with the coalition forces during the early 2000s, and he was saying that the troops should be kept in Afghanistan.
I took up the entire third page and a quarter of the front page with that story which was the most validating experience of my short journalistic career.
The reason I mention this story is because I received alot of angry emails addressed to my interviewee, saying for him to go back to his own country, to fight his own wars etc etc.
The bigotry got old very quickly.
I digress, I had a follow up to that story using an interview I had with Rockhampton member for state Parliament, Bill Byrne who just happens to have been an infantry officer.
Again, long story short he was against the troops but not in the way the disgruntled readers were, he was much more constructive.
I’ve been fortunate to have stories in the paper everyday with nothing past page 6, and I think this has a lot to do with the chief of staff, Adam Wratten and the editor Frazer Pearce.
They have been so accomodating, and extremly helpful, and they seem to really want me to do well here.
I am getting along with the staff, they are all so friendly and helpful which has made this a really enjoyable experience.
The staff is not small considering the size of Rockhampton, but by no means is it big, there is usualy 8 to 10 reporters in everyday, and there are two to three subs who stay behind every night.
I have to say that after working with some of the senior subs, I know now that you can not have a newsroom without atleast one sub in there.
It makes sense to out source a reporters copy, but you miss out on everything you could benefit from just by sitting through your piece with the sub.
Even if there isn’t really anything wrong, when a sub tells you that your work is good it really does make your day.
Anyway, we have the chief of staff and the editor.
These guys are almost too busy for words, first in last out kinda men.
The there are the photographers, there is about four of them in at one time.
One great thing about this paper is you do not need to own a camera of any description, they will throw a 5D at your face if need be.
For the last couple of vox pops that appeared in the Bully I was the one who took the photos haha.
Then there is the sports desk at the back where unfortunately the veteran sports ed passed away prior to my arrival.
So at the sports desk there is one reporter and the new sports ed.
I feel as though I’m forgetting something.
We have the entire floor to ourselves with marketing and adverising done on other floors.
Rockhampton as a whole is very quiet, not in the sense tat nothing is going on, rather it is very mundane when compared to it’s metropolitan bigger brothers.
Despite this I have loved it here, but mostly because I get to see my own story ideas put in the paper with my name on it.
I don’t want to sound overly self indulgent but it really is the best feeling.
Oh and I have had to do a fairt few street polls, and I was able to get a good story out of one person.
I suggested he propose to his girlfriend through the paper which gave me a front page follow up mention and a page 2 story the next day which was awesome.
I ended up half writing his proposal with his half pissed friends at my side, but it really was an awesome experience!
She said yes by the way.