“This is not good. For heaven’s sake you used to be a good journalist! The sales are going down and people up there are not happy!”
It was the second editorial meeting Petro was having with the media owner, and he was feeling defeated. For the first time in his career, he was speechless. He wanted to say just how much he wished things were different.
“I am trying all I can…” he said in a tone that wasn’t convincing even to himself.
“We are not seeing results. Do more…”
Those were the last words they said before they tucked their papers into their sophisticated files and left.
Petro knew that he had to do something. Even though the bashing by his seniors had been harsh, he knew that in the depths of those screams and admonition was a truth he was not ready to confront.
He was losing it as a journalist.
He wanted so bad for his stories to make the headline headline. He wanted to have a story that would get the whole nation talking. He wanted the scoop, and he wanted his name to be stuck upon the tongues of people who matter…long after the event had happened. And even more importantly, he wanted to convince himself that he still had ‘it’.
He wanted his old self back.
“By all means necessary….”He whispered to himself as he hanged his coat on his shoulder and left the newsroom.
The events that happened later that night created the shift he needed in his journalism career. A prominent woman died under mysterious circumstances.
He was the first one at the scene of the crime. He had all the details….the exclusive story. He became a hashtag; trending on twitter within the first hour that the story broke.
Later that night as he watched news analysis while sipping his vodka from a plastic cup, his senior editor called him.
“That was good. The sales have gone up. The advertisers are streaming back for space.”
He took one final swig and said:
“I did what I had to do Sir…”