I am proud to announce that I have recently been accepted into the Master’s program for Newspaper Journalism at Nottingham Trent University. What does this mean? Pack your bags boys & girls, we’re going back to the Motherland.
I have been anxiously awaiting this day; I have been awaiting the reassurance that next year will bring a new career, Sunday pub drinking and late night kebabs – the finer things of England. But when I received the offer, it wasn’t quite as easy to check the accept box as I thought it would be. All these thoughts began plaguing my mind: Do I definitely want to pursue journalism? Do I want to accumulate more debt? Do I want to return to England? Should I take some time off and travel/volunteer for a year? All these thoughts stemming from the fear of starting over. I spent the past four years preparing for a career in accounting all to discover that… well, accounting really is boring, just like the stereotype suggests. Although I am glad I took the opportunity to discover this through experience, writing off the last four years of my life, including my college degree, can be somewhat frustrating. There is the fear, how can I be sure that won’t happen again? With no prior obligation, I spent Saturday morning at the only sanctuary sure to sooth my soul (and where no one would see my hideous new bangs)…Barnes & Noble.
Upon arrival I followed my usual routine — scan the front table for new over dramatized British girly novels and then head right over to the travel section. I first stop at the large picture books and flip through all the ones of countries I would like to visit (in other words, all of them) and then to the travel novel aisle to scout for new travel stories (keeping an eye out for books about lost confused girls in their early 20’s trying to decide whether its a good idea to start over in another country). After that, I follow the aisle searching for travel books of wherever it is I want to visit next. As usual, I felt overwhelmed and happy. It was the large picture book with the “wonders of the world” that really grabbed my attention this trip. The book kind of bothered me by categorizing The Empire State Building and Statue of Liberty as an equally astonishing wonder as Egyptian Pyramids and the Australian outback, but that’s not my point. As part of the routine’s design, I felt an overwhelming need to travel, to see the world. I felt that no matter what I did in life, it absolutely must involve traveling. I put the book down as I began to settle on becoming a flight attendant and moved on. I became intrigued in the travel novel section by a book about a woman who hated her visit to India, yet returned years later to be with the love of her life, just as a fortune teller had predicted. I suddenly had to go to India, but remembering the fuss my friend made over taking Malaria pills when he traveled to India, I figured I took take my time in planning that trip. I searched for a guide book outlining Cinque Terra hikes, but none found I forced myself over to the writing section in search of Lonely Planet’s Travel Writing. Standing there, I realized my fear of pursuing a journalism degree wasn’t about whether I wanted to write, it was about pursuing a claustrophobic office oriented career. Now I know that every publication requires some time in the office before impressing its fans, but I have decided my participation in this could not be office oriented. I needed to be out there collecting intriguing information about travel, culture and the surrounding world. I needed to be the one bringing that information to the pages inorder to be satisfied. Now this I thought, I could be content with. Maybe I had found my direction and the first stop was Nottingham Trent.
Either way, they didn’t have my Lonely Planet Travel Writing book and I couldn’t leave empty handed so I purchased a guide to grammar and punctuation – two of my weak points that I should probably brush up on before pursuing serious writing. K, you would be proud!!
So, in conclusion, by the end of my brief weekly trip to B&N, I decided that whether I go to England or not, I think I know what I want in the future. One day, I want some confused young girl to find herself standing in the travel aisle looking at my book saying “wow, I want to go where she went”… wherever that may be!