School of Cultural Studies and Humanities

My journey from Leeds Beckett University to a Parisian office

Megan, a recent graduate, talks about her experience of taking her creative writing skills to Paris and the world of travel writing.

Megan in Paris

Bonjour! I’m Megan, a recent English with Creative Writing graduate from Leeds Beckett University, and I’m writing to share how I secured a position as an editor and travel writer in Paris, just one week after graduating.

I’ve always been interested in travel and learning about different cultures. I spent part of my second year at university studying abroad in New York, (and honestly, I could spend so much time writing about the greatness of a one dollar pizza alone). When I came back to Leeds to enter the first semester of my final year, I jumped at the chance to apply for a position as a freelance travel writer for Likibu, a French based travel company.

Throughout my final year, I balanced my studies with writing hundreds of articles for online media platforms, including travel articles for Likibu. Even though I was working remotely from Leeds, the Paris office never felt too far away. It was only the slight time difference in emails which reminded me that they were in fact overseas.

At the time when I was graduating with a 2:1 in English with Creative Writing, an editorial position with Likibu became available, and I went for it. Fast forward to just two weeks ago and I found myself packing my Yorkshire tea and my I HEART NY tee into a suitcase and moving to Paris.

View of the Eiffel Tower

I have no doubt the lessons I learnt throughout the entirety of my degree shaped the way in which I write and helped me to secure this position. The creative writing workshops in particular stand out as invaluable in my learning process, and I’ll carry this knowledge with me throughout my career, in every piece that I write. Working closely with my peers, and editing and critiquing each other’s work, gave me the confidence to edit articles in my role now as a travel content editor.

Studying Creative Writing taught me that each piece of writing has a purpose and that a piece of writing has to be drafted and crafted to ensure it is going to fit more than a criteria: it needs to resonate with its reader and leave a certain impression. My studies gave me the confidence to dive right into a text and discuss changes with my colleagues, and it made me comfortable in having my own work critiqued, which would have felt incredibly daunting if I had not already experienced this in the workshops.

Though the writing I am working on may seem (quite literally) hundreds of miles away from the work I studied at university, I have come to realise that whatever you write, the process is always similar, because everything has been written with an objective in mind, whether it is through a dramatic monologue, or an article about New York’s $1 pizza.

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what I'm most looking forward to about working here, although I will say I’m excited about also working on the US site, as I’ll have the opportunity to focus on and practice the differences between American English and British English. I’m also looking forward to writing in an environment which differs from that which I am used to in the UK, as I get to work alongside colleagues of all different nationalities, and compare their writing and content with my own, all whilst introducing them to the greatness of Yorkshire Tea, one cup at a time.

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