The more I progress in my degree, and into the profession of journalism, the more I tend to be drawn to fellow journalists.
Not only do we have similar interests and personality traits to an extent, it is also incredibly beneficial to have a close friend who is a journalist.
The main reason is that they tell you the truth even when it might hurt. Journalists are not afraid to speak up, provide another perspective or add another opinion. They are not shy and definetely do not lack robust opinions. They correct you if/when they have to, they criticise you when needed – and it is in these moments you know whether or not your friend is a good friend or not; if they criticise you in a subtle yet straightforward way but at the same time manage to make sure they understand your perspective and that they love you, you know it is a keeper you have found. You know when you receive criticism that is meant to hurt and when its aim is to help you become a better person, or realise another perspective.
Your fellow colleagues also have a great bank of knowledge which makes it enjoyable and interesting to have the many lively conversations and discussions you have. You will never run out of things to talk about or discuss. You will hardly ever agree but you listen to each other’s opinions, appreciate them but not necessarily support them.
You learn from each other and help teaching each other.
The best aspect, however, might be the very fact that they share your main passion – writing. And of course, the great thirst for knowledge and the need to share it with the world.
When you have known each other for a longer period of time, you also share several great memories. Each memory contains a different story and you will have different stories to the same memory. This, of course, is the case for everyone – we all remember things differently, but the neat composition of each story a journalist conjures up is special in its own right. Yes, we shall always stick to the facts, but at the same time we are incredible storytellers who like to angle something slightly differently to get a whole different story across. We do not distort the truth, we only turn the facts into a story to create a better narrative structure.
Last but not least – all those discussions and epiphanies spark inspiration.