Masters, Manchester, McNae’s Essentail Law

The blog has taken somewhat of a backseat during the past month or so due to the hellishness of leaving my job and delicious salary in favour of upping sticks to Manchester where I am currently studying for my MA in Journalism and my continued research in the bottoms of various wine glasses. Thusfar, neither endeavors are going to win me a Pulitzer but nevertheless I tirelessly soldier on!

I am grappeling currently with the two scariest modules of my course which are Teeline (a writer’s shorthand very similar in appearance to the mad scribbles of a toddler and with just as much clarity), and my McNae’s Essential Law for Journalists. Needless to say, a little knowledge makes you realise just how little you know and by merely opening these books and not actually accounting for their literary content much so far I have decided that I am completely screwed. 

My classmates are all very similar – friendly, clever and stiff competition. Not one toerag or wastrel that I can depend on to make myself feel better by comparison (not having done the preparatory reading or neglecting to show up for an exam). With my socks up by my nipples already in preparation for this course and my knuckles firmly on the desk I don’t really know what else save for hard graft and less hobbying about with the Pinot Grigio to see me through the year safely and with a little credibility. 

Manchester is everything I knew it would be. Manchester, like Morecambe from my days at Lancaster University, is one of those towns that up until recently I had only seen at night, whilst very pissed and with little knowledge of my surroundings save for my conscious mind being acutely aware that I wanted a kebab. One thing I could honestly take from Manchester is that the atmosphere was right and the whole place made me feel good. Leicester has this effect on me. Chester does also. London I find awkward, Edinburgh is always miserable, Birmingham is grotty and Loughborough reminds me of past crimes as a youth. I know when a gut feeling is worth following and Manchester fits the bill.

My course was obviously a huge incentive to move north – being NCTJ qualified will open doors for me in the Journalism world and having the skills that the course will give me, not to mention the pre-arranged work experience is going to give me a booster into a world in which I am still very much a rookie. However, my relationship with A, my strong friendships with Greater Mancunians from Lancaster and this unstoppable northern pull I have ingrained inside of me all contributed in their own special ways to my decision to forsake the midlands for the wild uncharted territories of Salford. 

After a week of living in the North West as a permanent resident (zero intention of settling down and finding a proper job in Leicestershire in the near future), I am contented and am making plans. Term starts for me on Wednesday and then I suppose I will have to adopt a more bookish demeanour than the excitable grin I am currently sporting as a perm fixture on my face but until then I intend to fully enjoy having left home and being my own woman once again.


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