The Casepost Boomerang
Apparently today is Saturday, although I can’t confirm that. Since Monday, all sense of time has evaporated. Life no longer passes in hours and days but in submissions and deadlines. The lessons in journalism come thick and fast. The primary ones being ‘Write for your readership’ and ‘No one cares what you think’. You also come to realise a little known truth; that journalists operate in their own space-time continuum, ageing in dog years - the only plausible explanation for how all this work gets written. Six days feels like six months as you morph from a nervous trainee to a naive journalist attempting to interview the broadcasting legend, Michael Buerk, on the way.
At your interview, the lovely folk from PA Training will have told you about this. They'll have forewarned you about the pace and intensity. You, in turn, will have nodded earnestly and assured them that you are indeed prepared for the hard slog. You’re not. That mere fifty words that you’ll write on Day 2 about some legal firm will lull you into a false sense of security. Know this; you did not just write your first article, you created a boomerang. The notorious Casepost piece will make more comebacks than Elvis. You will edit and resubmit, edit and resubmit, lose the will to live, find it again, edit and resubmit. Desperation will eventually take over and you’ll try every combination of syntax and selective facts to get it passed, eventually accepting another little known truth: that you are not alone on this 9-week journey - Casepost will be with you every step of the way.
"I'm six months into my first journalism job and I struggle to think of anything the Newcastle PA course failed to prepare me for.
"Everything we learnt was made to fit effortlessly in to 17 weeks. It was impressively comprehensive - leaving me confident in doing everything from court reporting to play reviews - but not remotely rushed."
Jack Hardy // Trainee reporter, Press Association