Curiosity is essential

Lack of curiosity is some students’ downfall.  I love tutoring. But it has ups and downs. And the worst down is realising that about 20% of my students will never make it into a worthwhile career in journalism. Why? These 20% of students lack curiosity. You can’t be a journalist if you’re not curious.

A successful journalist is always curious. You must be curious enough to at least READ the publications you say you’d like to write for. Amongst the 20% are students who simply don’t read . . . they get their information from radio, TV and conversation with friends.

You should be curious about big questions like: How does the world work? How does the human brain work? What are people’s motivations for what they do, or for what they love or hate? Curious about the little things: Why do dogs bark and cats meow? Why is A4 paper the size it is? Why are some people able to nap, and others can’t? If I was a student, I’d be curious about my tutor. Who is Simon Townsend? What are his qualifications? Is he any good as a tutor? Yet 20% of my students are totally un-curious about me. They never ask for the FactSheet on my professional and personal biography. Oh well . . . I CANNOT offer a FactSheet called: “How to acquire curiosity”. You are either curious or you’re not. But without natural curiosity, I don’t know how anyone can become a successful journalist.

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