So your friend tells you she has an extra concert ticket and wants you to come. So, you go. As soon as the curtains rise, you something very odd! There is no pianist, no guitarist, no drummer! Standing right there is just one man, doing all of it. He is playing the drums, hitting piano keys, strumming the guitar strings…and you are amazed. It’s a one-man band! Now flash forward and this is essentially the job of Blayne Alexander, 11 Alive News Reporter, and many others across the nation. The idea of the “one-man band” is increasingly more and more common. It is the person who shoots, writes, and edits their own stories or anyone who do all the jobs themselves. It requires skill, focus, and passion. Blayne came to speak at Georgia State’s Modern Media Conference and her advice was definitely inspiring! So, to prepare yourself, here it is:
1). Get your feet wet: It is definitely a challenge to start at any job, especially in communications/journalism, without any experience. Anything will help you to get exposure, even if it is not in your future. Learning a new skill set is never a bad idea and building a portfolio for yourself is always not only important, but imperative.
2). Start small, get big: Of course you will not just walk into lets say CNN and get a job fresh out of college (well, maybe but most likely, no). It is okay to start in a smaller market like Augusta or so and move your way up (this is why number 1 is very important). The better exposure to the field, the better your chances of rising up.
3). Write, write, write: At the forefront of every media career is the ability to write and write well! This was Blayne’s most important tip. Writing is key. It is, very well, the most basic form of communication, to date. And, one we should all master. If you got this down, your set!
4). Never enough criticism: No one is perfect (well, I might come close!) and criticism in the field is something, according to Blayne, that should always help you. Do not take it with a grain of salt but as a way of improvement. Listen with an open mind and be willing to take constructive criticism for the sake of your work. It can ALWAYS be better!