Wow, the final day already – I’m not kidding when I say it feels like I’ve barely been here a couple of days, let alone a week. I still remember that awful journey getting here and the almost as awful journey back to get results. I’m pretty sure the amount of travelling I’ve done coupled with the stress I’ve had can’t be healthy, but hey ho there you go.
We had a prophetic sounding final breakfast in the holy place called Costa after handing in our room keys to the hotel. I made the mistake of having a sickly drink and a sickly sweet muffin, meaning that I was feeling a little off when we trekked up to the office. Thank goodness we didn’t have to climb stairs as I’m sure I wouldn’t have made it up to the sixteenth floor. Then again, stairs might have been better as the man that got in the lift with us proceeded to fart and depart on floor five, leaving Bekki and I choking and gagging for the next eleven floors.
The office was pretty empty today, with other three others beside Bekki and I, in the Sun section. One of the reporters was off to find out some information on a story by a hotel. It involved having to ask some of the guests what had happened, but to make sure he wasn’t stepping on anyone’s toes the reporter kept in the car park only to have a ‘friendly’ hotel manager come out to shout, swear and threaten him with not only someone who would follow the reporter home, but also to punch him and break his nose. Unfortunately this happens frequently according to the other reporters – it seems that everyone wants newspapers to know everything so that the public can access all the interesting information, but as soon as a reporter comes near them it’s like they switch into ‘All journalists are evil and must be stopped’ mode, sure that all journalists are satan’s advocates and are out to taint their souls.
We actually had the chance to work on an article together and have it sent off for a possible feature in tomorrow’s paper, which I’ll definitely blog about if it’s a successful attempt! It’s incredible exciting to even think that there might be a possibility of being published in the UK’s leading newspaper, but I’m trying not to get my hopes up just in case. (But really I am definitely getting my hopes up because come on, who wouldn’t?)
The Head of the Manchester Sun offices, who actually gave us the work experience offer, chatted with us about the newspaper and actually offered a real insight to the UK’s national papers. In no way meaning that The Sun was any better than any other national, he told us that any of The Sun reporters could work at somewhere like the Times or the Telegraph easily, but the skills you need for the Sun are very particular so they would struggle to fit in. You can write a great article, only for an editor to chop it down to two sentences that still say everything you said, just in a more concise manner – and maybe even more entertaining if suitable for the topic. I’ve met so many people who make a silly face when the Sun is mentioned, turning their noses up at it in perfect snobbish fashion due to the legendary page 3 and it’s ‘dumbed down’ writing style. This week has really shown me how wrong those people are as I’ve found it a real challenge to make my writing more concise with a wittier style to suit the Sun readers.
We met another great journalist who seemed a lot more relatable to in some ways, but completely not in others. Probably one of the most enthusiastic people I’ve met, this journalist told us all about how she entered the journalism world and how she spent a lot of time at the Sun. She literally rang them up on a Thursday afternoon, said that she wanted to intern and makes great tea, told them of past experiences before then informing them that she’d see them on the following Monday. Apparently she turned up, took the office by storm and now says that it was probably the best thing she’s ever done.
After taking us out for drinks, Bekki and I had to say goodbye to the Manchester Sun team to head on home. We went to the station, grabbed some dinner from M&S, paid an outrageous fee of 30p to use the bathroom and finally boarded our train.
All in all, this week was a whirlwind and I wish I could do it all over again, but one thing is for certain: they’re going to be receiving a crap ton of emails from me in the coming years just to make sure they don’t forget me. Who knows, maybe I’ll write some reviews for music and books for the Sun in the future – I suppose you’ll all have to stick around and see.
This concludes the end of the Manchester journey.
HOLY CRAP BATMAN.