Journalists come from all walks of life and no two stories are identical. We all have our own reasons for wanting to be journalists and for the most part we all have a picture in our mind of where we’d like to go with our career. Our reasons and our motivations may not be the same as the next person, but as with any profession, there seem to be some personality traits and habits that journalists have in common.
I recently stumbled upon a website called Stuff Journalists Like that is run by two newspaper reporters, Christopher Ortiz of New Mexico and David Young of Northern Colorado. The site is dedicated to making light of the triumphs and terrors of being a journalist and provides an extensive list of hilarious truths surrounding the life and labor of a journalist.
While you may not be able to relate to all of them, it’s likely that if you’ve been “in” journalism for more than five minutes, you’ll probably be able to relate to more than just a few – and the ones you cannot relate to, you may assume it’s all stuff you can look forward to.
Of course, this website is speaking predominantly about newspaper journalism, and despite what some say, there are other options for writers, but regardless, the website is a great insight into the life of a journalist at all stages of their career.
The list includes things like coffee, deadlines, press passes, name dropping, Google and Post-it notes (all of which, I concur, are great). But if you take a little time to sift through the long list of other things on the website, you’ll quickly find yourself nodding in agreement to most and blushing in shame (because you agree) to some. It’s a rare chance to self-analyze and it’s funny, which keeps the ones that can only be referred to as “sad truths” bearable.
When journalism students hear people scoffing at their desired profession (it will happen, if it hasn’t already), it’s difficult not to get demoralized. So I think websites like Stuff Journalists Like taking a lighter approach to the profession are a good way to feel like you’re not alone in your race to the finish line, regardless of your quirky journalist habits.