Welcome to the Globe’s SLCC Talks—a new column where the Globe staff answers questions that our readers send in.
In this edition of SLCC Talks, we talk about writing for the newspaper.
“How did you end up as a staff writer for The Globe? And what advice would you give to someone wanting to write for the Globe paper?”
Stephen Romney (Arts and Entertainment Writer):
Unlike my colleagues, I didn’t start out in the journalism classes offered by the Communication department. I was fortunate enough to have been taking a class taught by Julie Gay, who oversees the Mass Communication Center, during the spring semester of 2011.
Upon filling out the application, giving some sample articles, and writing a fairly lengthy but convincing personal statement, I handed the forms to Julie and then pestered her over the next few days until she confirmed that she gave the application to the acting editor-in-chief, Ceville Bailey.
After a brief interview, I was hired the following summer, my first article being a review of “Kung Fu Panda 2.” It wasn’t until much later that I started doing video reviews on YouTube to complement the content on the site.
When it comes to writing for the paper, here are two pieces of advice I would offer.
Be persistent: It’s one thing to say you want to write for the paper, but actually doing it is another thing entirely. When it comes to getting any job, you have to be willing to CALL—not email—your prospective employer almost every single day if you truly want it.
The same thing applies to getting interviews for your stories. Can’t reach the person you need to talk to? Keep trying, even if you have to talk to everybody that your interviewee works with. When conducting the interview, don’t stop until you get the information you need. People may not like that, but it will keep you from getting the run-around from some of the more press-savvy individuals, as well as show readers that you can be a credible source of information.
Be consistent: Don’t just write whenever you feel like it. You have to earn that. When you do get the job, get in the habit of having at least one story coming in from week to week. Sometimes, this means having to go out and find a story, but if you establish early on that you will be a steady contributor, it will demonstrate that you are serious about your job, something that the bigger newspapers will want out of their writers.