by Darrion Gray
If you’re driving somewhere unfamiliar for the first time, there’s a chance you might get lost. Often times, we as a community, hate to ask for directions. Fortunately, Melissa Wilson, an anchor on Fox 26 Houston, stopped by Texas Southern for a writing workshop to volunteer these directions. In order to ensure that you make it to the desired destination on your media journey, follow these directions:
1. Pick a destination and head towards the highway. If you don’t know where you’re trying to go why did you even get on the road? For most people, the goal is to reach the top of your profession. Wilson advised those interested in writing to, “write what you’re passionate about. What you love to do is what you should write about.”
2. Merge on to the highway. While in college, many students struggle to find their footing. As we start to find what we love, Wilson, just like many Herald staff members, stresses the importance of reading as it, “can subconsciously improve your writing.” Once you start to grasp a writing style, it’s no time before you’re speeding down the highway to your destination.
3. Don’t be afraid to take pit stops. When your mind is on the big picture, it is easy to lose focus on the present. This isn’t driving from campus to Aspen, or even to the north side of Houston. This is a journey that will likely take some time to go through. Starting in a small market may seem like a disappointment, but in actuality, this pit stop could be a blessing in disguise. The small market allows you to make mistakes and hone your skills. After a few years, move to a slightly bigger market. Then, fingers crossed, you move to a truly big market without ever having to downsize. This was the path Wilson took to Fox 26, and she encourages students to do the same.
4. Continue straight ahead. There will be a lot of distractions that could come into play in media, but keeping your composure is essential for an anchor. Wilson described some of the numerous potential distractions she’s encountered while on air. There have been loud bangs from lights crashes, rats falling in front of her, and directors continuously talking in her ear are all things that Wilson has had to deal with on air.
There is no exact science to getting to your dream job. All Wilson can do is give some advice. Hopefully, these directions lead you down the right path.