That Was the Year That Was (2013): Gabriella Bennett, soon-to-be digital journalist, The Herald

GOOD year, bad year? With the new year now upon us, we ask Gabriella Bennett, soon-to-be digital journalist at The Herald: ‘How was 2013 for you?’

Briefly, what is it that you do?

I am currently between jobs, having just finished at lifestyle magazine, Homes & Interiors Scotland. I am about to start a new position at The Herald, as a digital journalist.

Choose three words that sum up 2013, from a professional point of view.

Testing, rewarding, fruitful.

In 2012, what was your biggest ambition for 2013, and to what extent did you achieve it?

I wanted to feel that I had made progress, in some sense of the word, whether that be within my role at Homes & Interiors Scotland or doing something completely different.

It was also important to feel like I was using my creativity and imagination efficiently; my new position at The Herald will involve writing content for, and helping to launch online, an idea I brought to interview which I’m excited about. So I feel that I’ve achieved these ambitions, though it will be a month into 2014 when it starts to be realised.

How was 2013 for you, personally?

Productive. In my free time I’m the editor of Valve – an experimental literary journal publishing new fiction and poetry – and this year saw the launch of its third issue to great critical acclaim. Through Valve, I also became involved with another project that will launch later this year, involving The Poetry Club and the artist, Jim Lambie, which will combine art and the written word. It’s nice to feel that I’m not neglecting the personal side of my writing with these ventures.

Any changes during 2013 – in technology, legislation, the economy, etc – that have had a relatively significant impact on the business?

At the beginning of the year, Homes & Interiors Scotland launched its digital version as well as a more comprehensive website, and it was important to have been part of that. It was good in a professional capacity too – it seems to me that digital skills seem to be looked upon more favourably than print at the moment.

What looking forward to, in 2014 – personally and professionally?

Having the opportunity to be freelance during the first six months of my role at The Herald is a great position to be in. I plan to expand my food writing portfolio around my daily work and hopefully being inspired by new experiences – both professional and personal.