Sunday, 19 December 2010

Musings about the autumn term

Dear reader, since my last entry, I have regained my lost confidence. I may not be Salman Rushdie (not that I like his style of writing but, he IS successful) but I think that I have improved. In the course of the past couple of day, I have witnessed some of the best and worst moments of living life.

The autumn term is at an end and I am done with the first part of my course. Although I am looking forward to the holidays, I can’t help but feel sad that the term had to end. I really liked Journalism in Transition and the Tuesdays spent at the Argus training rooms.

One of the best bits of the training at the Argus were the days I spent doing practical work, out in the ‘real world’. They took us out to gain experience, gathering real life stories and applying the knowledge that we have gained doing all those mock writing stories.

I especially enjoyed the trip to the royal pavilion exhibition and learning to write a review. Although I have written a review on an art exhibition, it was from an academic point of view. I learnt the major difference from a journalist’s perspective, which is an attention to detail. Whilst this is important in every piece one writes, it is really important to get the facts right when writing a review for a newspaper.

Brighton Pavilion

The other really interesting day we spent was researching for a court story at the Lewes Crown Court. There are so many rules that we have to bear in mind when reporting a court story. It is absolutely mindboggling!!! Anyway, I have decided to include both these stories in the final Journalism Portfolio. So, I hope that I can write them well.

Lewes Crown Court

On a brighter note, I am going to be in London for the next couple of weeks. I am really looking forward to exploring the city during the course of my stay. To be honest, I have been a bit boring during the last few months. In fact, the extent of my extracurricular activities has been on a scale of 1 to 10 been -0 (cringe worthy!!!). So, in order to regain my sanity after weeks of academia induced insanity, I hereby vow to let my hair down and enjoy the holidays. So happy holidays, dear reader!!!

Saturday, 4 December 2010

In which I rant about my own limitations and the general sliminess of politicians

My last entry was all about my efforts to improve my language and writing. It was a noble ambition, dear reader, but how I wish I could convey in words how frustrating it is when whatever one writes is complete rubbish.

As part of my journalism course at the university, I have classes at the training rooms of a local newspaper, ‘The Argus’. As cool as it sounds, the reality is really different. I confess that when I read about this part of the course, I was absolutely thrilled. However, after six weeks of training, the misconception that I had a fairly decent talent for writing has been shattered to smithereens.

The first thing that I learnt was that there is a huge difference between being a writer and a journalist. All the ideas I had about writing are so different from the practical skills that we are being taught. I love to use flowery words but no siree, I now have to say a lot of things in a few words. It is kind of clever how we are being encouraged to play with words. It is also depressing to note that I have absolutely no knack for it. Anyway, I can try!!!  

On a completely different note, I recently witnessed the student protests against fee hike from next year. Apparently, the politician, Nick Clegg, promised the voters that he would not raise the University fees but now that he is in power, he is singing a completely different tune!!! Big Surprise!!! I don’t want to come across as cynical but here it is- “politicians are the same everywhere”.

They lie and cheat their way into power and once they have it, well, they follow their own whims. Well who are they kidding? The public is not completely stupid. So, Mr Clegg, enjoy your position whilst you have it because I don’t think that the public will want you back. It is the same in India!!! I bet the different parties behave like they hate each other in public and then laugh about how gullible we are behind closed doors!!
Anyway, what really impressed me was the united front that the students across the UK have put up. I do hope that they get what they want and on that optimistic note, I end this entry. 

About 1,500 students are marching through the city today.

At about 3pm, a group of them approached Brighton Town Hall in Bartholemew Square, and shortly afterwards occupied Priory House nearby.
They also entered the Brighton University building in Gra
Students Marching in Protest in Brighton
About 1,500 students are marching through the city today.

At about 3pm, a group of them approached Brighton Town Hall in Bartholemew Square, and shortly afterwards occupied Priory House nearby.
They also entered the Brighton University building in Gra
Brighton and Sussex University Students march hand in hand as a symbol of unity

Friday, 12 November 2010

Introductory ramblings

I want to start this new blog by declaring that the sole purpose of this blog is to help me grow as a writer. As a student of Journalism, it is important that I grow as a writer and so, it is with this objective in mind that I have started this blog. I might be boring and cheesy alternatively but the one thing I will try to be is a better writer. So........well......LET US BEGIN with my artistic endeavours!!   
It has been a month since I came to England and to be honest, I have been suffering from bouts of homesickness. Autumn is the time of the year when many festivals are celebrated throughout my country. I was told that it is the same here but I had my doubts about the scale of the celebrations. Well, I was mistaken and HOW!!!

My introduction to England started with Halloween on the 31st of October and was followed by the spectacular Bonfire night on the 5th of November. To be honest, I was astounded by the scale of the Bonfire night celebration that I attended in Lewes. The sheer scale of the arrangements made was only topped by the amazing array of processions and fireworks. It was certainly a sight and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Bonfire Night- Lewes

All this was in a way a fun way to be beginning my academic year. As a journalist in training, it is probably for the best that I get to know my surroundings. We are told that one of the major tools in our arsenal should be our observational skills, as in, our ability to retain the most from our surroundings.

I think that this is probably the most important skill in the trade as we all know that people are not really forthcoming in communicating with journalists. Interview skills are probably necessary but in my opinion, powers of observation are really the most critical skills to have. Imagine being asked personal questions by someone tactless. It might just put one off communicating.

Anyway I just hope that the coming year might help me polish both these skills. The past couple of days helped me realise how much I seem to miss by just drifting by without a clue. So, new resolution at the beginning of the term –“Try to be more alert and tone down on being utterly clueless”