How does Sima find stories?
- By using social media to find something compelling which leads to a story
- Talking to people on the street or at events for ideas
What makes a good story?
- Can you explain your story or idea to an 11-year-old?
- ‘Keep it simple stupid’ (KISS)
- Real people with compelling stories, different feelings, personalities, problems and issues
"Be bold, be brave, don’t be scared – go up to that person you think won’t talk and ask them for that interview." – Sima Kotecha
What makes a good reporter?
- You have to become an expert very quickly. There is no room for getting anything wrong. Read, listen and talk to people
- ‘Produce’ your interviewees to keep them to topic. A phone conversation can help
- Be bold, be brave, don’t be scared
Building relationships with contributors
- Be patient
- You can’t just show up and start recording
- Get what you need and leave, before the amount of material you gather becomes overwhelming
- A typical package for the Today programme is just four minutes long - ideally three-and-a-half
- Have a dramatic clip at the beginning and a dramatic clip at the end
- Be ruthless
- Go for those bits of audio where you know people at home will go wow!
"The job of a journalist is to find answers to questions everybody wants answers to." – Sima Kotecha
A journalist’s job is to:
- be independent
- conjure up debate
- invite the audience to challenge what they have heard on the radio and make their own mind up
- show both sides to a story
- find answers to questions everybody wants answers to
A journalist’s job is not to:
- over-complicate things
- say what is right or wrong
- be dictated to by contributors