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Karen McRae

“Thanks to the Morris Academy of Journalism, I built up the confidence, and practical skills, I was lacking, to actually get published… and not just once, but several times!”

A few years ago I did a Diploma of Freelance Journalism with the Morris Academy of Journalism. This is my story.

I’ve always enjoyed writing – I even had a secret diary as a teenager (which I still have locked up somewhere!). At university, I had completed a Bachelor of Communications, covering the tip of the iceberg when it came to writing and journalism… theories, case studies, techniques… however, I felt stuck, even embarrassed to approach anyone to publish my writing. I asked myself questions like: Am I good enough? Are my ideas even interesting?

Not anymore.

Thanks to the Morris Academy of Journalism, I built up the confidence, and practical skills, I was lacking, to actually get published… and not just once, but several times!

Besides reviewing basic writing techniques, the Professional Freelance Journalism Course has taught me how to really think about possible stories to write about. It gave me ideas, and taught me how to look at a story from different perspectives, how to target the chosen angle towards a particular audience, towards the right medium, and (possibly the most important skill I learnt) how to pitch my ideas to potential publishers.

At first relatives and friends thought that it was almost a redundant course for me, and that I was kind of wasting my time, since I had already obtained a degree. Nonetheless, once they saw how assertive I started to become in my approach towards becoming a freelancer, they realised that this course was in fact, pardon the cliché, the last piece of the puzzle.

After completing my Diploma I felt like I obtained the final tools I needed. I felt positive, and I felt that yes, it is possible. As the course was delivered online, I was able to do this course while working full time – as we all know, bills still need to be paid. I had the chance to think about the assignments given, ask questions about the exact requirements if I was in doubt, and then delivered the best I could at my own pace. What I absolutely loved about the course was that I had the chance of submitting my work to a professional and then received specific feedback on what I needed to review to get better… to get published. It’s a competitive world out there, so you don’t just need to be good… you need to be great.

After the course I have managed to publish several features articles in a European newspaper and travel articles in a weddings magazine. I have also started a travel blog, which I’m really keen on developing further! Getting paid doing what I love? Oh it’s simply an amazing thing! Even though at the moment it’s still a freelance exercise, I’m still keen on pursuing my dream – in fact, I’m looking into enrolling in another course offered by the Morris Journalism Academy.

The Morris Journalism Academy course has certainly given me that practical experience and professional feedback that I needed – I became confident. I became a writer.

To view Karen’s blog please visit thereisnoplacelikeblog.wordpress.com

Karen McRae


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