(This is a chronicle of my journalism adventure, and where the passion started)
In August of 2012 I had a bright idea. After hearing about some friends in my university course wanting to start up a sport blog/website, I wanted in on the fun; but instead I took it down my own path. I am very glad I did.
My love of sport has no end; since a very young age I have rarely been seen without some sort of sporting gear in hand, or eyes glued to the TV on the next blockbuster game.
Once I got to secondary school, a few things started to cement themselves into place, in terms of the direction I wanted to head in. However, it wasn’t until 2008 (when I was in Year 9), that I really started to find my niche.
After suffering a serious leg injury halfway through 2007, I think my mind turned towards having a career outside of playing sport. Granted, I never wanted to leave the sporting field (and was able to return in April of 2008), but I also wanted to do other things in sport.
May of 2009 (Year 10) saw one of my former school librarians email me, suggesting I should perhaps write a story. I had been planning to go with my Japanese class to Japan for two weeks later that year, but was knocked back by the sister school of Newhaven College.
However, I decided to take up the idea, and a series of seven “novellas” were written (with pen, I might add) from 2009-2012. This was definitely the start of my writing passion coming to the fore.
Before that, in 2008, one of my Year 9 projects, called “Personal Best” asked me to choose something that was new to me. I chose sports photography, after some lengthy discussions with my Mum and Year 9 teacher.
I am very glad I did – because that was the catalyst for my love of photography, which is taking me places. With such a good score on the project, I knew I could not let this opportunity go to waste.
Back to 2012; having started my Sports Journalism course at La Trobe University, immediately I wanted to be in the thick of things. That is where AFL Victoria came in. Working with the volunteer media team in 2012 (and also 2013), I have been able to go to TAC Cup and VFL games and have seen some very high quality football. At the same time, I began what is now just a small part of my journalism adventure.
When Mum suggested I go along to the initial meeting, I baulked, thinking it would be too much work. Then my love of sport drove me to pursue the idea, and I have loved every moment of it. I was lucky enough to go the TAC Cup and VFL Grand Finals last year, at Etihad Stadium, and not only did I see some incredibly good games of football, I also got to write up the TAC Cup match report. But that was just the beginning.
Starting this blog in August, the hardest thing to pick wasn’t the topic; it was the name. I came up with AllJournalism, but given that I wanted this blog to encompass sport, that definitely didn’t seem right. The supermarket a couple of weeks later proved the name sealer.
Walking through the bakery section, I was thinking of the blog, and realised just how lucky I was to not only be studying Sports Journalism, but to be involved in sport in many different ways. That’s when Beyond Realisation hit.
The meaning I want to convey with the blog title is more than just throwing match reports and quotes at the reader. I want it to be analysis, opinions, focusing on players and teams. And it’s going exactly the way I thought it would.
Some of my writing “gigs” have included (including AFL Victoria) sports opinion website The Armchair Selector, Big Bash League Team Sydney Thunder, a feature piece for The International Cricket Council, and a whole lot more. From features, to profiles, and research, there is still so much more to go.
When I first began to build my profile as a journalist (and journalism student), one of the most important things I was told was to ‘build a contact list’. This has helped me build the crucial connections which has allowed me to expand my horizons and expose my work to others. It’s also important for everyone else within the industry to build connections. Being able to link with professional writers and other media experts can glean great insights into how the industry works. Through these connections I have had some great writing opportunities with big sport teams and websites.
Another friend for connections, discussion, commentary and analysis has been Twitter. “The journalists haven”, as I have heard it referred to by one of my university lecturers, has opened up many new ideas and avenues I never thought I would stumble across.
Everything I have so far done might be volunteer work, but it has been incredibly beneficial in improving my skills and exposing me to different styles of writing – from match reports and analysis, all the way to focus pieces and opinion. Each writer has their own style, their own creativity.
Beyond Realisation has not just let me write about different aspects of sport, it has also let me post photos that I have taken at sporting events, local or national level. Pictures can complement articles really well, and it is also another way to display my other hobby, photography.
The photography passion came about during the personal best project, and I have not looked back since. Being able to capture some unforgettable and memorable moments for life is fantastic, and behind the lens, you see things from yet another perspective.
I can’t wait to see what the future lies in store – taking it one step at a time and putting my hand up to do as many things as possible is my short term goal. Ultimately, my long term goal is to be either writing, taking photos – or perhaps a combination of both – in a job that I love.
Keep up to date via my Twitter and Facebook pages – all the relevant links are on the home page, on the right hand sidebar. Happy reading, and whatever sporting endeavour you’re undertaking, keep at it.