I wasn’t sure what to expect from The Professional Freelance Journalism Course. As a new writer, my initial thoughts were, “would this be too much for me?” I needn’t have worried. The fact that the course is self-paced, over a two year period, really takes the fear away as you are not panicking about deadlines (that will come when you do start writing articles, believe me!)
I enjoyed reading the tutorials and found them beneficial in helping me understand how the business works and also made me think of other areas I could specialise in, as I was very much focused on one area. The feedback from my tutor was excellent. She pointed out where I could improve but was never overly critical. I found it a great way to learn.
The course also gave me the confidence to approach editors which is something I hadn’t done before and probably wouldn’t be doing now, if it hadn’t been for this course. This is where the doors can really open for you and I would encourage any budding journalist to try and do it as early in the process as possible.
I am fortunate to be published now and have had my work used by Sky Sports and Boxing News Magazine, as well as having a regular opinion piece on a boxing website. In all honesty, I still pinch myself that someone will pay for my thoughts and views on a sport I love and it may not have happened without this course.
I am still freelance and I prefer it that way as it allows me the freedom to do other things I enjoy. Next I am looking at exploring the travel journalism industry. I have also been asked to write a sportsperson’s autobiography on the back of my articles being published.
If I can share some of my experience, I would say, don’t take any rejections personally. It’s hard not to, but just because one editor says no, doesn’t mean that they don’t like you or your work, it may be that it wasn’t right for them at that time. And remember to practice, practice, practice! I cringe when I look back at my earlier work but it is all part of a process. I have learned to be more economical with my writing and have become better at editing my own work which leaves me with shorter but stronger pieces overall.
If you even have a passing interest in writing then I firmly believe this course will help you in so many ways. Don’t put yourself in a position to say, if only I’d done that course I could be writing now. Get enrolled and give it your best shot. Good luck!