I am addicted to The Block. Bare with me, this is going somewhere.
Every night at 7o’clock, or 7o’block as a very overpaid marketing team would have you say, I sit down to watch the drama of renovation play out in front of me.
I find myself judging these people on unfinished splash backs, lazy finishes and the wrong shades of white. Trust me, coming from a girl who can’t build an Ikea chest of draws, this is rich.
“But what has the block taught me about Journalism?” I hear you ask. I’m telling you anyway.
It has taught me that the difference between good and great is found in the details.
In one of my first writing classes in university a teacher gave me some harsh criticism that taught me so much about the crafting of words.
“Don’t be lazy when you write. It is so easy to just use cliche phrases and overused metaphors. Create your own words, don’t rely on old sayings. That is what will separate you from the pack.”
From that time on I have strived to write in a way that isn’t grounded in other people’s hard work. There is a difference between creating original stories and regurgitating tired ideas.
Just like in a room renovation, if you would be so kind as to follow me on this metaphor, great journalism is found in the details. A renovator can have a great concept but fail in the execution. So too, a journalist can have a great story idea but fail to do it justice.
A story can read adequately, use appropriate grammar, get some quotes from a press conference and be ready to print come deadline, but somehow still fail to impress.
Then, sometimes you read something that has so much attention to detail that good no longer seems good enough. The grammar is a perfectly finished brush stroke, the sentence fragment is a polished floor board and the interviews from multiple sources are the artwork tying it all together.
The difference between good and great is found in the details, just ask a “Blockhead” (ok maybe the marketing team got me).