I’m currently a freshman in college and I have been thinking more seriously about becoming a music journalist. Do you have any tips on being a successful writer and how to get your shit out there and noticed by the right people?
Well, truthfully, I have absolutely no idea how to be a successful writer. I just scream at paper until words show up, and usually those words are awful because I screamed them and my mouth was full of spaghetti. So my advice is about as useful as anyone’s with an Internet connection.
But, I GUESS, if an actual successful person were to give you advice, they might say that you should find something that you really really enjoy writing about and write about that a whole lot, in your own way and with your own voice. Even if it’s just on Tumblr or Twitter. And even if it’s about things that are dumb, like butts and boys, even though those things are not dumb and they are my life.
If you like music, then write about music! Start a Tumblr where you write about music! The most important thing, I think, is to just be original in whatever you do. A lot of people try to get jobs at BuzzFeed because they love writing about Beyoncé and One Direction — which is great, obviously, because I love those things, too, and can discuss them endlessly. But BuzzFeed has a bunch of people who write about those things every single day. So, realistically, you either have to write about something else that nobody else is writing about, or write about the things they are writing about, but in some new, exciting way that’s unique to you. That’s how you’ll eventually stand out and get noticed.
BUT. It takes a lot of time and practice and patience and screaming and spaghetti. Fortunately, you get used to the screaming.