06 August 2017

What's good for the journo is bad for the bank...

I do not do things by halves. If something is important to me, it takes over my entire life and there is nothing I won't do for it. Journalism is one of those things. Consequently, I have spent £40 on books in three days and I'm desperate for more. I'm going to limit myself to talking about one of the books I have bought and one which I would very much like to buy.

One of my main reasons for going on a book shopping binge was to get my hands on a copy of Ludo and the Power of the Book. Written by Richard Ingrams, this is the story of Ludovic Kennedy, arguably one of the greatest journalists ever to have lived. Because of my almost complete lack of free time, I've barely started the book but already it has helped to crystallise my journalistic ambitions.

And what high ambitions they are. I am aiming for the giddy heights of Kennedy and Paul Foot. I already knew I wanted to do investigative work (although of course all good journalism is investigative and Foot hated the way that investigative journalists are perceived as superior to other journalists). Now I know I need to focus on miscarriages of justice.

I won't pretend that it's going to be easy. I'm going to have to push my shorthand far beyond what is expected of us on this course. I need to delve deeper into media law surrounding court cases. I also need to make a name for myself. Foot was once asked what the secret was to being a successful investigative journalist. He said that people rang him up and told him things.

Before this turns into another unscheduled therapy session, I'm going to move on to the book I wish I could find and read all by tomorrow. This is Amo, Amas, Amat... and all That by Harry Mount. Confession: I am not, by any standards, cool. So while my friends were singing in the school choir or playing football, I was studying Latin. For fun. In an after school club. When I was nine.

I am nothing if not pretentious.

The reason I want this book so badly at this precise moment in my life is that I am fortunate enough to be interviewing Mount tomorrow. A self-confessed "young Oldie", I'm pretty sure if anyone understands my love of Latin, it's going to be him.

I could easily write more but luckily for anyone reading this, I have an editorial meeting to attend. Valete.

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