Saturday, 30 August 2014

How To #17: How to Become a Journalist

Tell people you want to be a journalist and you’re often met with raised eyebrows and passing “oh…wow” comments- and not in a good way. Next thing you know, they’re hiding their phones from sight in case you start hacking in to them and reveal they’ve slept with their swimming coach, or something. But that’s far from what journalism is actually about. On the one hand, it’s about hours so long you feel like you might as well set up a tent in the office, an endless supply of caffeine, and ruthless editing cuts. But it’s also about meeting people from all walks of life, a constant buzzing atmosphere and literally creating a story out of nothing.

This year, I participated in a News Academy summer school for News UK and, without sounding too much like an X-Factor reject, was one of the best experiences of my life. But there’s no use me telling you about how to be a journalist. That would be like asking Victoria Beckham to give you advice on plus size clothing. So, out of the kindness of my heart, I will share with you some of the top tips of getting into the industry by some of the best journalists in the biz:


Gemma Calvert of Fabulous Magazine- tips on how to do a good interview

·         Research is key- make sure you gain a good knowledge of the person you are interviewing

·         Note key details about your subject. For example, if you are interviewing a celebrity- what are they wearing? What are they eating? Do they come across as nervous or confident?

·         Never start off on the tough questions. Address the topic, and then ask about their general opinion.


Mick Hume, Editor of Spiked- how to write 

·         Accuracy: Write the facts and remember the five Ws- Who, What, When, Where and How. What do you know about it? How do you know about it? Use reliable evidence to prove this

·         Brevity- Don’t use five words when two would suffice- be short and snappy

·         Clarity- Tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them, and then go back and tell them again.


These are just a few of the journalists that spoke to The News Academy last week, but I think the best advice about effectively getting a foot in the door comes Editorial Director of The Sunday Times, Eleanor Mills:

·         Be brave and keep pestering- persistence is key and is also recognised in the journalism industry.

·         Prepare to do what other people don’t want to do- that’s the only way you’ll get to do what you really want to do.


As for me, all I can say is the journalism industry is tough. There’s no doubt about it. But gain as much experience as possible, get your work out there and never give up.

Love Georgia x

For more information about The News Academy, visit their website at:



Thursday, 7 August 2014

How To #16: How To 'Loom'

Looming is the latest craze to hit today’s youngsters- so much so that it’s actually considered a verb- and has since spread, being popular amongst everyone from your neighbour to your grandma. You want to know how to do it, because you secretly think it’s pretty cool, but don’t want to ask your 7 year old cousin because that would be embarrassing. So, if you finally want to enter into the world of looming, follow this beginners guide. Nb: This is how to do the ‘Fishtail Loom,’ if you were hoping on a guide on making a loom dress and selling it for thousands on ebay, you are sadly mistaken.

Step One: Place first desired colour over two fingers in a figure of 8 shape.


Step Two: Place however many more colours desired over your fingers normally (i.e. not in the figure of 8 shape as above)

Step Three: Starting with the first band, take one side and stretch it over your finger, placing it between your two fingers. Repeat with the other side of the band. Repeat this process with the other bands, remembering to add more bands as you go and also stretching the loom occasionally for a neater outcome.

Step Four: When finished, use the pictured 'S' shaped clips to secure the loom at each end.

Ta Da!

So, was it all it’s cracked up to be? Although you may feel an embarrassingly proud sense of achievement when you have finished your loom creation, spending ages basically cutting off the circulation in your fingers with brightly coloured elastic bags does make you question your integrity and frankly, your worthiness as an adult.
Feeling adventurous? There are loads of tutorials on YouTube à
Loom Bands are on sale for £1 per pack at The Entertainer (UK only.) Other stores may vary.
As always, e-mail me your ‘How To’ suggestions at
Happy Looming!
Love Georgia x