How to become a sporting journalist

My article on the pioneering BJ Evans and his 1946 careers guide / memoir How to Become a Sporting Journalist is in the latest issue of When Saturday Comes. Evans was regarded as a ‘master craftsman of sports journalism’, and his book inspired writers including the late Frank Keating. The book offers an entertaining glimpse into the profession’s formative years.

“‘I started reporting soccer in a very humble way,’ recalls BJ (Bill) Evans in his 1946 book How to Become a Sporting Journalist. As an apprentice at the Western Daily Mercury in the early 1900s, Evans was sent out to cover minor league matches on a bicycle with two carrier pigeons in a basket. At the end of each half, he would fold up his written report, attach it to one of the pigeons and release it into the sky. ‘The bird wheeled over the ground,’ he writes, ‘often cheered by the two or three hundred spectators, and then made his way to the pigeon loft of the Mercury.'”

You can read the article in the March 2015 issue of WSC.

UPDATE: The article has also been published by the Guardian.


Published by Paul Brown

Writes about football, history, true adventure. The Guardian, Four Four Two, When Saturday Comes, The Blizzard, Longreads, Deadspin, etc. Latest book: The Ruhleben Football Association. Twitter: @paulbrownUK