About Fiona

I'm a Geordie Broadcast Journalist living in the Lake District with a Masters in Broadcast Journalism from City University, London.

I’m ITV Border‘s South Lakes Reporter, based in Kendal, though the musings on this site are my thoughts and not my employer’s.

Outside of work, I love the outdoors. I love long-distance fell running, cycling, rowing, skiing, climbing, walking…I’ll try most sports, as long as they don’t involve an extension of my arm, like a racket as I have little co-ordination!

running
Running / scrambling in North Wales
rowing
Rowing with Hexham Rowing Club, before I founded Windermere Rowing Club
cycling
Cycling Land’s End to John O’Groats

4 thoughts on “About Fiona

  1. Hello Fiona!
    Ny name is Natalia. I folow you on twitter (London_step). I am a journalist from Russia. Sorry for writing here, i don`t know your e-mail.
    I like your blog very much, it is very interesting. I saw videos here with your interviews and vox popos. I think you are a very good journalist and you have such a great experience…Why am I writing to you? Well, i am going to London in September to study International Journalism (Master program) at City University and you are a current MA Broadcast Journalism student at City. So i would like to ask you how do you like to study there? Is it difficult? Should I somehow prepare before coming? I know we have different courses but maybe you could give me some advice. Frankly speaking i am a little bit scared of my future course. I live so far from Great Britain and English is not my native language. I think it could be very difficult to me to study there.
    Is this blog a part of your course work? And have you taken internships somewhere in London? City University wrote me that students should take work experience during the course and i think i should start search for something.
    By the way i want to ask you about Local Story Swap web site. Is it a web site for journalists to find new ideas for their stories? For example i could write about event o news and other person could use this idea for an article?
    Probably i didn`t catch the sense.
    I hope you will answer (you can write to cartoon_motion@inbox.ru)
    Really nice to meet you…
    N

  2. Hi Natalia!

    Lovely to hear from you. Congratulations on getting on the MA International Journalism course! It’s very competitive so you’ve done really well to get on it – they wouldn’t have selected you if they didn’t think you were up to it, so try not to worry too much. It’s a lot of work, but in a sense you should feel reassured that you were good enough to get on the course!

    I don’t have to run this blog as part of the course but it definitely helps put some of the Online Journalism module into practice. I think it’s very important in 2011 to have a website, because it’s fairly easy for anyone to have one these days, and lets future employers know you’re aware of the change in how we consume news etc. But more than anything, I just enjoy having somewhere I can write what I want and upload my video and audio packages!

    If you want to prepare, getting as much work experience as possible will definitely help. Any experience you have in Russia will be very beneficial. The main people to ask for work experience in the UK are the BBC, ITV and Sky – but there are lots of others, it just depends what you’re interested in? You can apply to all of them online (give me a shout if you can’t find them on google and I’ll DM you a link). It usually takes quite a few goes and the application forms are pretty long, but persevere, you’ll get there! It took me 20 applications to get my first work experience placement at the BBC! One good piece of advice we’ve been given is to make sure you know everything there is to know about the station you’re applying for and what programmes they make.

    Other preparation…it would be good if you’ve watched a lot of news – BBC News, Sky News, Al Jazeera, ITV News at 10, Channel 4 News…and also other current affairs programmes like Panorama and Dispatches. You should also be listening to as much radio as you can, BBC World Service, BBC Radio 4’s The Today Programme and commercial radio stations.

    A lot of the course is just having the confidence to pick up the phone and persuade someone to talk to you, so any experience you can get where you’re calling people and thinking creatively will stand you in good stead.

    Local Story Swap is a project I’m doing as part of the course. The idea is that nowadays aspiring Journalists start in local (radio) newsrooms, but jobs are so scarce that you take one anywhere it is – even if you don’t know many people there! So the idea of Local Story Swap is that it’s a place where you can share local stories that you hear of but can’t use in the newsroom you’re working for, and in return, you can find stories that someone else has posted. However, it’s still a work in progress, and at the moment, isn’t really working because Journalists tend to hoard their stories – no-one wants to make the first move and post an idea! If you have an idea, it would be great if you can get the ball rolling? You’d go down in the Hall of Fame as the first pioneer! I’m going to open it out now to people who aren’t Journalists and might want to share their stories – if you have any more ideas please let me know!

    I hope that helps. I don’t by any means have all the answers – and I’m usually just trying to keep my head above water too! You’ll be fine – none of us really feel like we’re there yet but I think that’s a good thing, because it keeps you trying to improve! If you have anymore questions, I’d be happy to help. My email address is fionamarleypaterson@gmail.com

    Fi

  3. Have you ever thought about including a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and everything. However think about if you added some great graphics or videos to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and video clips, this site could undeniably be one of the most beneficial in its niche. Amazing blog!

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