What is the course about?
Students on this course will enjoy a well-rounded introduction to the basics of freelance journalism. The key components of writing news, features and vox pops will be discussed. You'll also learn how to put stories together and get them published.
Tony Padman began his journalism career in 2000 as a news reporter on regional and national newspapers. After a solid grounding in hard and soft news he turned to features by writing stories on health, religion, sport, education, travel and food. He has written news and features for both the tabloid and broadsheet press and now specialises in news, interviews, education, entertainment and general features.
What will we cover?
- News and feature writing
- What are vox pops used for
- Editorial V advertising in journalism
- Interviewing skills
- What you need to become a journalist
- How to use facts and quotes.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Write a news introduction
- Write a feature introduction
- Understand the difference between news and features
- Understand how journalists operate
- What makes a good story
- Conduct a vox pop.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
The course is an introduction course and no previous knowledge or skills are required. Energy and enthusiasm are more important than writing experience. It is also suitable for foreign language students with a reasonable level of English.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
This is a highly practical course with a focus on both group and individual work. We will have discussions from articles including those of the tutor’s own work; short films showing how news and features journalists and editors generate, operate and produce articles; we will use some of the tutors’ articles during the writing exercises; there will also be group work within the college and you have the chance to quiz the tutor on what it’s like to work as a freelance journalist.
All writing courses at City Lit will involve an element of workshop. This means that students will produce work which will be discussed in an open and constructive environment with the tutor and other students. The college operates a policy of constructive criticism, and all feedback on another student’s work by the tutor and other students should be delivered in that spirit.
For classes longer than one day regular reading and writing exercises will be set for completion at home to set deadlines.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Purchase of publications/magazines from your target area is advisable. A book list will be provided. General guides such as The Writers and Artists Yearbook, or The Writers Handbook are recommended.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
City Lit run a range of beginner, intermediate and advanced journalism courses. Please search our website for 'journalism' to find more courses.
All students are invited to join us at City Lit Talks Back, our monthly performance night for City Lit writers. Everyone is welcome, admission is free and there's no need to book in advance. Students are also encouraged to submit to Between the Lines, our annual anthology of creative writing. For the latest news, courses and events, stay in touch with the Department on Facebook and Twitter.
General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details