Monday, 12 November 2012


I have been thinking about where I will be at this time next year and it makes me feel scared. I have some plans and whatever, but I feel as though one of the downfalls of being a journalist - or any sort of creative person - is that nothing is guaranteed career-wise.

I guess nothing is guaranteed for anyone, ever. But I feel as though nothing is guaranteed even more for people who enter jobs that are not “in demand” like a doctor is “in demand.” It is strange to me, though, that journalists are not more in demand because the world would certainly be difficult to understand for the average person without them. I touched on this a little bit in my last post, about how, in my opinion, the job of a journalist is to help the public understand occurrences around the globe. 

Anyway, as I was saying, that’s the downfall - that there is so much competition and so few jobs and the industry is changing and getting even more uncertain. But I also think those things are kind of like highlights. I usually like things to be rollercoaster scary, and I have gotten myself in and out of trouble all of my life so I feel as though I am as prepared as the next person to enter something like this where everything is kind of uncertain. It is almost like a trade off - as a journalist, and as I experienced on a small scale interning at a paper this summer, you get to go around and observe a number of things every single day, and then you get to tell the whole world (as you know it) the story, what happened. Up until I was about 20 that used to be my life anyway, just cruising around and deciding on what I should do depending on how good of a story it would be later, so it was pretty nice to get paid to do it and not have to be so personally involved at the same time when I worked for the paper. Having a sweet gig like that obviously doesn’t come for free. That’s what I mean when I said it’s like a trade off - the jobs are few and you have to work your fuckin ass off to hook anything up. But in the grand scheme of thing it makes sense because I guess if it was easy everyone would be doing it.

I remember at the paper this summer I was cruising around on Portage in the company car with my Lennon rose-colored shades on. And I had covered a story where someone drowned in a pond so I was feeling sad. I was sad that, before my very eyes, the mission of the underwater police unit turned from a rescue mission to a recovery mission. And I was sad that the kid was so young and just drowned in a pond, just like that. But I was a little happy because I got to be there to observe and try my best to get all the facts about what lead up to this, so in a way, and on a surface level, I was doing my part in helping others around the city understand why things went the way they did. It didn’t feel like doing enough, really, because if I could I would bring that kid back, but it was the most I could do as a journalist, you know what I mean? I guess I was happy too because, on a personal level, observing that whole recovery mission and all the people standing around waiting for this kid to get pulled out of the water made me think about my own life as a kid (yes I am still a kid I don’t care what you say) and that I was alive and doing a cool job and it was summertime and later that day Katherine (the other intern and my pal) and I were going to Chapters and she was going to pick out some cool fiction for me, even though I felt like I was living a life I didn’t even need to escape from. Talk about seeing the world through rose-colored glasses.  
And I remember getting to go to a farm one day when I was reporting, and learning about how damaging wild predators can be to livestock, and seeing farmers loosing their money and their minds over it, and I remember thinking I was pretty lucky to get to know different things like that. And to have the opportunity to make a difference in someones life by being the vehicle through which their story gets told.

So that’s what it’s about, I guess. There are no guarantees but if you work hard enough to hook it up for yourself it’s pretty fuckin sweet. And I’m okay with knowing that.