And so my NCTJ journey has begun

charlane-robinsonBy Charlane Robinson

And so my NCTJ Journey has begun. I am currently studying at News Associates and I am really enjoying it. Whilst the course is fast paced, the tutors are more than willing to explain things in further detail or illustrate points with enlightening anecdotes. I have found this particularly useful in Media Law as there is so much to remember!

Admittedly, the thing that I was most anxious about was the dreaded ‘Teeline’ shorthand. Weeks beforehand I had enthusiastically purchased the Marie Cartwright book and impatiently waited for it to arrive. Alas, when it arrived I scanned through the pages and an actual tear came to my eyes! How was I going to be able to not only decipher this cryptic scrawl but be able to confidently do my own version at 100 words per minute? I closed the book and made myself a cup of tea.

However, in my first shorthand lesson I learnt that I was being dramatic, there is logic behind the scrawl and it merely takes hundreds of hours of practise. No problem! Undoubtedly, it is a beast but I will tame it by any means necessary.

Defamation made me want to lie down in a dark room whilst burning incense…  I had never considered the prospect of being sued for simply telling the truth! I am immensely looking forward to visiting the Old Bailey with my trusty press pass and looking incredibly serious as I take shorthand notes.

I have always been a naturally inquisitive person so when I found out how easy it was to put in a Freedom of Information request my mind was blown! So now I can take it upon myself to find out how much my council spends on condiments? I can singlehandedly stick it to the man by asking a barrage of questions which they have to answer? Mental. I am yet to take the leap but I will do very soon.

Whilst the finding the balance between studying, perfecting my shorthand, work and still finding time for a few glasses of rose is a struggle – I am enjoying the challenge!