So here we are. The Herald Sun. If I’m honest I was always a bit nervous about entering the huge building that is a Melbourne CBD landmark. But to my surprise the Herald Sun is as warm and welcoming as any newsroom I’ve been too so far. Editorial is smaller and more intimate than The Age and many of the reporters and young and extremely friendly. More than one come up to me on my first day and vowed to find me something to do, one remarking “I remember how scary and boring being an intern can be.” Immediately on my first day I was given the job of conducting vox pops for the next days letters page. The girls on the news desk all smiled sympathetically when they overhead I was being given that job (they do to it when no interns are in, and I don’t think they particularly enjoy it!). But I didn’t mind.
I also had a meeting with Editorial Trainer Nick Richardson to discuss the editorial traineeship program at News Limited. Nick said it was really the only way to get into the business now, adding that the reporters are expected to do such a variety of things that specialist in house training was necessary. Since applications are taken in late April I asked him what advice he had for graduates who are finishing in the next couple of months. Get a job regionally for now (he did laugh and add, not as easy as that, but do your best) and then apply with as much newsroom experience as possible. I told him sounded like a good plan!
Wednesday morning I got given a news tip sent in via the website regarding an 11-year-old Brisbane boy who had designed a Brownlow gown the wife of the Brisbane Lions CEO. I organised through the Courier Mail to get a photo taken and was pretty pleased when Barclay messaged me this morning to tell me it had made the Courier’s front page! Good times 🙂
Wednesday afternoon I also went with out with reporter John Masanauskas for an exclusive interview and photo with former Carlton President and infamous Melbourne identity John Elliott. What an interesting character! I have to say I was a stellar photographer’s assistant, holding lights and flash umbrellas on the roof of a 20-storey building like a pro! John Elliott watched me and declared “I bet you’re an intern!” (haha, maybe I wasn’t doing it so professionally). It was supposed to be the following days front page exclusive, so everyone in the newsroom (especially John and the editor) were pretty disappointed when it was leaked to the Age and appeared on their website later that afternoon. That’s news I guess, and the story was pushed back to page 7.
I also wrote an op-ed piece regarding the vote on gay marriage. I’m not sure they will use it but thought it was worth a shot and the Chief of Staff has promised me who would read and consider it so that’s all I can ask for.
I’ve been told I will be heading to MX next week which I am looking forward to. I have had such a great week so I will be sad to leave (well, to two floors below).
It’s been such an interesting contrast to my week at The Age. In one way it’s hard to judge with all the issues Fairfax were having, but here at News Limited they have had plenty of staff let go too. I guess what I found the most difference is the attitude to news here. It’s very fast paced, catchy, attention seeking. Perhaps less in depth, but really no less important. Just a different type of news.
I forgot to mention I did have a page 3 piece in today’s Herald Sun. Well, kind of. I had to write up a very short 5 par piece to go with a very cute Melbourne Show photo of a pony named Mrs Spots and a dog named Daisy. Hey, it might not win a walkley, but I’m counting it!