This post is supposed to be an explanation into how I got into television, both for future reference for myself and also to help anyone else out there that might be struggling to find their way into the industry. I didn’t really want it to be a ‘so the moral of the story’ post but it definitely will be so here we go…
If any of you guys read one of my first ever blog posts, you will know that in Spring this year I went to This Morning Live, an exhibition in Birmingham based on the daytime television show. Whilst I was there, I met the editor of This Morning, Martin Frizell. Me being the upfront person I am unashamedly went up to him, told him my life story and asked how on earth I was supposed to get into television – my dream career since I was about 10 years old. It turns out that my confidence paid off as 7 months later I have an actual job in actual television!
My first opportunity came about after Martin gave me his email address and told me to contact him with my CV. He was kind enough to help me get onto the ITV insight programme where I completed a 2 week work placement at the ITV studios on the Southbank in London working with the production team on This Morning. This was a dream come true considering I had never done anything in television before so my first experience was in a huge live TV programme where I got to see exactly how things work. I met some really awesome people whilst I was there, both celebrities and people that work on the show who were so welcoming and really tried to help me with my career path.
I happened to get talking to some of the girls in the fashion department and they asked if I would like to intern with them. This is the main reason I moved to London; I was going to be spending 5 weeks here anyway so I thought why the heck not just move for good? I wasn’t getting paid for the internship so I had to get a part time job in order to pay for my rent and well… to live. I got a job at Brandy Melville in the Oxford Street Topshop meaning I was working 12 hour days, 7 days a week. I can honestly say those 5 weeks nearly destroyed me. There were many breakdowns and numerous teary phone calls back home but I got through it. I completed my internship with the fashion department at This Morning and quit my horrendously painful job at Brandy in order to focus solely on a career in television.
and also knowing I wouldn’t have anywhere to sleep if I didn’t get a job made me determined to work as hard as possible in order to find a production company that would take me on with my small amount of experience. I spent hours writing and sending emails to individual production companies knowing that there was only a slim chance of getting a reply let alone any actual work. After sending what must have been a hundred emails, I got a phone call from someone at a production company called Kudos.
Kudos are producers of TV drama such as Broadchurch, Grantchester, Humans, Life on Mars and MI High (any of my main CBBC watchers out there remember that?) They produce incredibly successful content for broadcasters as big as the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky Atlantic. After going into their head office for an interview, I got invited to do a 3 day trial with them for an office runner role. On my first day I immediately knew I had to get the job. The people were lovely, the job was so much fun and I was finally where I wanted to be.
…My first day was 4 weeks ago and I haven’t left since. Yesterday, I officially signed my contract to be an office runner/receptionist at Kudos Film and Television.
Looking back to this time last year, living in London with a job that could potentially lead to my dream job was a fantasy so wild I could barely even imagine it. Just over 12 months ago I was completely lost, I had dropped out of school and I was fighting a mental illness that very nearly got the better of me. I now get paid to be in an environment I love with people I admire.
So the moral of the story is that you can gain something from every experience in life, whether they are good or bad. If it wasn’t for the experiences I have been through, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Without leaving school due to mental health issues I wouldn’t have worked at House of Fraser to earn money that is allowing me to live in London. Without working at House of Fraser I wouldn’t have got the time off to go to TM Live where I met Martin Frizell and without the thick skin that my past has given me, I wouldn’t have the determination I have today to pursue my dreams.
Whatever it is you want to achieve, you can do it.
Hugs and wishes,