Interview with Andrew Bucklow, Entertainment Writer at news.com.au
Andrew Bucklow has been an entertainment writer with News.com.au for seven years. He also hosts the news site’s daily news podcast called ‘From The Newsroom’. Before joining News.com.au he was a radio producer with Southern Cross Austereo.
You moved from breakfast radio producing to entertainment producing – how did you make this leap?
After seven years with SCA I wanted a change. I loved radio and thoroughly enjoyed the buzz of working on a breakfast show, but the early mornings were getting to me and I was ready for a new challenge and to learn some new skills. News.com.au had a few jobs going at the time and I was lucky enough to land one. It’s so much fun that I’ve been here ever since.
What is your favourite medium to work in and why?
Both radio and online are great fun, but I would have to say that working in online has given me more opportunities than I could have hoped for. I’ve had the privilege of attending and covering some amazing events including the Academy Awards. Working for news.com.au has also given me access to celebrities that I possibly wouldn’t have had access to if I was working in radio.
What does a typical workday look like for you?
I get in just before 6am each morning and start working on the script for ‘From The Newsroom’ which I record with Lexie Cartwright at 6.30am. After that, I start looking for stories that have broken overnight. I also listen to a few radio shows as I find they provide great content for entertainment articles. I’ll write on average three or four articles before Lexie and I get together at 1pm to record the afternoon episode of ‘From The Newsroom’.
How do you gather ideas and research for your stories?
Stories can come from anywhere, really. We check to see what’s trending on social media, we check out other news sites and RSS feeds, chat with publicists, arrange interviews with celebrities who have something to promote. If there’s a TV show that’s rating well at the time, we’ll look for different ways to cover the show as there’s clearly an audience for it.
For a press release to stand out to you, what should it contain?
The subject line of a good press release should be a potential headline for a news site. That’s the best way to make it stand out. Instead of sending through a press release with the subject line: ‘Radio show interviews Taylor Swift’, make it more specific and identify an angle, so go for something like: ‘Taylor Swift spills on messy feud with Kanye West.’ As entertainment reporters, we don’t often have time to listen to every interview we’re sent so identifying a strong angle from the outset makes it much more likely that we’ll pick it up.