Laura Finaldi in Jordan, 2012

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Growing Up or I guess that’s what this post refers to

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This isn’t a happy post, so if you’d rather scroll down and look at mud pictures and photos of babies voluntarily planking, by all means, do so. I won’t hold it against you.

In the cab this morning, I didn’t say a word to Kate or to the driver as we drove along the now-familiar roads we take to get to “safarah brittaniyeh,” or the British Embassy which is right across from our school. I was too preoccupied with thoughts about the hours of reporting, editing and writing in front of me.

Am I cut out for this?

Journalism is not like engineering or pharmacy or even pre-med in the sense that no matter how hard you work, you may not actually find a steady job. With the more scientific fields, if you study hard enough, meet the right people, and do an internship or two, chances are you’ll be successful. There’s so much demand for skilled people in those fields. I’m not dissing the engi-nerds at all. I’m just saying I wish the same could be said for the field I’ve spent the past five years of my life dreaming of breaking in to.

Some people thrive on the competitiveness of this field, on the pressure of deadlines. I’m not one of those people. A lot of times I find myself frustrated, dying to get the story done, but overwhelmed the entire time with the thought of someone tearing apart my precious copy, which inevitably happens, always.

I used to think I was a good writer. Good enough, I guess, to get the Globe co-op. Good enough for Gal to ask me to run for managing editor of The Huntington News. Part of me feels like I tricked people into giving me those positions. I don’t know how, but I guess there’s a part of me that feels like I don’t deserve them.

I even feel like my blog posts kind of suck. I read everyone else’s and their writing is so clear and their thoughts are so well-formed. I don’t feel the same way about mine.

Today was different though. I left right after class for the University of Jordan so I could track down an economist for my next story, which is on the recent hike in gas prices here. Usually I dread these sorts of things–the thought of going into an interview and having the person realize I have no idea what I’m talking about is, for some reason, really scary to me. But today it wasn’t. I marched right through the gates, past the clock tower, and into the Faculty of Business building. I found someone who speaks English and had them point me in the direction of a longtime economist, who was more than happy to help me with the story. As is Jordanian custom, after the interview he offered me coffee, and we had a nice chat. He asked me if I wanted to be a journalist. “That’s the plan,” I said, to which he replied, “you have the skills for it.”

That was nice. But as I sit here next to Carlene and have her ask me again and again for extra quotes and more vivid descriptions, I feel my chances slipping away, with every click of her keyboard.

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Written by laurafinaldi

May 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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