Journalism skills

It’s nearly Christmas… or not. Lessons learned: writing in advance

Whilst I am vaguely beginning to hear everyone else begin to complain about how early Christmas products are being featured in the supermarkets, or on TV adverts; for those working in monthly or quarterly magazines, this is quite simply not the case.

Let’s face it, after summer is over and the academic year begins in September, Christmas slowly begins creeping its way in, on the radio, in the post, on TV, and of course in shops. I love Christmas, but more importantly the build-up to the festive season! So, it wasn’t to my horror when I started work in August, and we were working on the winter issue, which of course, is festive inside and out! Being on a quarterly magazine, we are writing and planning way more in advance than on more regular titles. In August I was collecting in Christmas-related and festive fundraising stories from PTAs at schools, in September I was writing up and researching Christmas films for our ‘How to pick the right movie screening’ feature, and in October I was proof-reading and subbing the magazine, reading every element of Christmas that was featured.


So now it is nearly November, and my mind is in spring. I’m thinking outdoor games, BBQs for giveaways and I’m well and truly in 2014 already. My Christmas excitement has peaked too soon! My short-lived buzz in September has now left me with the realization that Christmas isn’t over, I do still need to do my Christmas shopping and I should be in full-swing of the actual festive season very soon!


For work, it can be very frustrating planning so far in advance (asking people about their Christmas plans in August), that when someone gets in touch with you about an amazing story/idea/product just before Christmas, for your Christmas issue – it just never works!

So now, by day, I’m happily writing about the new year, spring season, and even as far as Easter, but I’ve trained myself to remember that soon, the festive season will hit everyone else and be back on my agenda.


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