12 Tips I Learned on My Journey as a Journalist
Multimedia Creative Artist Tammy Reese Shares Some Insights
Tammy Reese began her career as a theater actress performing in 60 live stage shows a year with The Media Unit TV and Stage Production Company. She also directed the weekly live TV show Rough Times Live.
Eventually she went to Empire State College to obtain her degree in media studies. After graduation, she did more theater and wrote and produced her own videos to spread awareness on social issues through the arts.
Her company, Visionary Minds Public Relations and Media, came about as a way to showcase visionaries on social media for the inspirational work that they do. Then she began to collaborate with other creatives to co-host and co-produce the Visionary Minds TV show.
She is currently killing it in the multimedia/digital media space as podcast co-host for Digital Media Insights and the New York Women in Film and Television podcast. Tammy is also a celebrity interviewer and has interviewed many major stars, including Donell Jones, Meagan Good Franklin, Leon, Nelly, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Christopher Play Martin, Mick Garris, Marion Ramsey, Claudia Wells, Carmen Electra, Omar Epps, Ginuwine, Serayah, Courtney Kemp, Carl Anthony Payne, Richard Grieco, Miko Hughes, Heather Langenkamp, Tony Todd, and many more.
In 2019, she received the WCNY/PBS Makers: Women Who Make America Award, and, in 2018, the 40 Under Forty Award.
As a member of the press, she has covered Black Music Honors, Urban One Honors, the Oscars, Sundance, Tribeca Film Festival, New Jersey Horror Con, NYC Hip Hop Film Festival, NYC Horror Film Festival, and more.
Tammy shares twelve keys points from her journey as a multimedia journalist.
Do what works for you
As a journalist, I utilize numerous media platforms and methods on my multimedia journey. I love in-person/on-camera interviews just as much as I love digital media interviews via zoom. Magazine Editorial writing, as well as Podcast and online interviewing, have been my go-to as I excel as a media professional. Don’t box yourself in. Create your media content whichever way is more comfortable for you as a journalist.
Work hard, but don’t overwhelm yourself
The media industry is forever changing. You have to constantly stay up to date with news, trends, current events, and more. Also, technology changes rapidly as well so you have to forever pay attention and forever learn. Also, media pitches come constantly. You have to pace yourself but don’t get lazy so you don’t miss an epic opportunity.
Monetize your work
It’s amazing to provide earned media or barter services in the media industry however, as a writer or media host you have to get compensated in some type of way..once you paid your dues of course. You will know when you deserve to earn for your hard work. Don’t feel guilty about it. Your brand and talents are a business and you are worth it.
Never stop learning
As mentioned earlier tech and trends changed a lot. In media you can cover the biggest industry events or interview the most notable celebs, that doesn’t mean you know it all or that you stop learning. Keep perfecting your craft, Study the journalists you admire. Watch videos and read up on journalist tips and methods or new tech and software for interviews.
The beauty of media is freedom of the press. Make sure you don’t ruin your credibility or ruin someone else’s career for the sake of a story.
Networking is vital. There are tons of media events to attend in person, but online networking (interNETworking) is so at the tip of your fingers via social media, email, zoom meets, and more. Connect with publicists and journalists especially.
Conduct interviews with journalists and have them interview you as well. It helps both of your brands.
Changing trends is a theme of this article, however, it is so important to remember this. Know what the current topic is and make sure you are keeping up. Know when to do interviews for certain weeks, and months of the year. For example, March is Women’s History Month. I do women’s articles only during that month.
Know What Your Purpose Is
Though I have interviewed tons of celebs and covered many industry events and conferences. My purpose is storytelling. Period! If it’s telling the story of someone making a social impact, or an underground music artist, or a small business owner, or someone who has triumphed through almost giving up on life. I love telling a diverse range of stories to educate, uplift, inspire someone else.
Have Others Give You Feedback
Watch and listen to yourself. Also, read your work over and over, but also have others do the same to give you honest feedback on what needs work. You should be able to take constructive criticism that will help you grow. Grama will tell you are you the best, but a fellow media professional or your publisher will be honest. Take the advice.
Promote Your Work
No one will know what you do or have done if you don’t promote it. With or without a publicist you better share the interviews and stories you worked hard to tell. Share with friends, family, colleagues, and via social media platforms. You never know who is watching. Promote hard or go home.
Start Your Own Media Platform
You already have a media brand by being a journalist. It’s awesome to be a part of various media platforms that are growing or already established. Only on your own time, if you think you are ready go ahead and start your own media company or platform. Create the podcast, magazine, blog, or radio show, etc.. You got this!
More Tammy Reese
INSTAGRAM: @tammyreesemedia & @visionarymindsnys
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYbVHGyvqNCBgh2fHW1siJQ/videos
A woman that can make another woman feel heard, seen, loved and valued is cultivating women empowerment which is the ultimate selfless act.
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