A weekly Q&A with interesting people in the Australian Media Industry
Ros Reines
  • Name Ros Reines
  • Company Sunday Telegraph
  • Position Columnist
  • Interviewed by Social Diary on 17/4/2015
  • Q
    Describe your career path to date?
    A
    I started out as an advertising copywriter at an ad agency in Sydney. I went to London to pursue my career there but became a little bored with the work. I decided to follow my love of music to become a music writer and eventually specialised in reggae, which meant travelling to Jamaica to interview acts and cover reggae music festivals. Returning to Sydney, I worked in newspapers as a reporter and feature writer, covering everything from state politics to the food section. I danced around social column writing, launching Chums for the now defunct Eastern Herald in the 80s.
    I later became a feature writer for various magazines including Mode until I was employed to write the Social Diary for The Sun-Herald in the mid-nineties. I was poached to join The Sunday Telegraph where I have been ever since.
  • Q
    Tell us about your new book and your experience writing it:
    A
    My new novel The Social Diary is set in the eighties and I was inspired to write it by the people I met and some of the things I experienced. There are several well known characters sipping champagne all over the pages and a love story with an unexpected twist. I am currently writing the sequel, set in the year 2015.
  • Q
    What do you love about your job?
    A
    I love the privilege of meeting so many fascinating people and being given access to red carpet events. It's an addictive, heady lifestyle to be absolutely honest.
  • Q
    And what's not so great?
    A
    Having to call people up and confront them about a story that I will soon publish. There's often that awful pause down the other end of the line where the person will hope that someone is playing a joke on them by impersonating me.
  • Q
    Describe your typical day?
    A
    The alarm goes off at 5.30am every day except for Sunday. I like to write my novel for at least an hour before the working day intrudes. Then I'm at the gym for an hour, four times a week and then I'm reading papers, going through social media and basically looking for stories. I might file something for online several times a week or work out what I want to write about on Sunday.
  • Q
    What is the best experience you've had in your career?
    A
    That's difficult for me to answer because it's been one hell of a long career. But I do like getting dressed up to go to events where I can rub shoulders with interesting people. I like meeting powerful women that I might not usually have access to but recently the best experience for me is handing my work over to a publisher and knowing that I don't have to obsess about it any longer.
  • Q
    What do great PR people do?
    A
    Say yes when I ring and ask for an interview with someone fascinating, sit me next to someone interesting at dinners and lunches and not just with a bunch of other journalists. Treat me with respect and not like public enemy number one.
  • Q
    What do bad PRs do?
    A
    Pester on the phone to go to boring events or write interviews about people with little claim to fame. Hover by my side when I am trying to get my job done, bombard me with useless emails and sound genuinely surprised when I don't want to spend an hour driving out of town to attend the launch of a stamp (well, you know what I mean).
  • Q
    How do like to be contacted and when?
    A
    I love email and I always try to respond fast. I'm less impressed with frantic phone calls about nothing.
  • Q
    How has social media altered your job since the days when you started out?
    A
    It's made the world more vibrant and I have lost count of the number of well known personalities I have simply contacted through their social media feeds. It has made everyone much more accessible.
  • Q
    Do you enjoy attending industry events, and how do you choose what you will attend?
    A
    I have a love/hate attitude to industry especially if it means just hanging out with people who are a couple of generations younger and making small talk. But if there is a fantastic guest list then I can't not go and I often return home feeling energised.
  • Q
    The media landscape is going through a period of dramatic change - where do you see it in 5 years?
    A
    I think the printed word will always have a place but increasingly we will be looking at seasoned commentators to interpret the news in their columns. I hope that book shops keep springing up and beautiful magazines. I am a great consumer of the printed word. Meanwhile we will all rely much more on websites and social media to deliver the news with the use of video and live feeds.
  • Q
    If you weren't a journalist & author, what would you be?
    A
    I'd love to be a scriptwriter on a soapie, a radio producer or a celebrity minder, I'd be thrillingly competent at evading the press.
  • Q
    Your Instagram/Twitter:
    A
    Both are @rosreines