"Sa ngalan ng KATOTOHANAN at tunay na PAGLILINGKOD..."
In the Philippines, when we welcome visitors to our homes, we say "TULOY PO KAYO."
As a journalist I'd been telling and sharing stories through the broadcast and print networks that I was connected with for nearly two decades now starting at age 20 in 1990, 2010 thus marks my 20th year in the industry.
What a journey, 20 years is , well... 20 years but hey, I still feel I still have a lot to do, conquer and explore in this chosen field.
They say that for a person to be truly happy, one has to chose a job, a profession that he loves so that work becomes a source of happiness and fulfillment, a source of inspiration and strength as opposed to a work that tires, burns you and puts you in a box of routine existence that you forget the feeling and the thrill of having to expect the really unexpected.
Reporting and writing, these are two things that I want to do from the very beginning. I can never imagine a day without me writing even when I was still at a very young age. What I can't say openly, I express through writing and what I question, I investigate and inquire for as long as necessary until I get to the bottom of it. Patience in this profession is essential, the one attitude you need to survive. But I believe, I am more than patient. I am persistent. MAKULIT!
I could truly say that this is my passion, my craft, my world.
But more than being truly fortunate to embrace and practice a craft with loving passion and devotion, like what a wife should be to her husband, or a husband to his wife, for after all, this thing that I do is like a marriage vow, the commitment goes, "for as long as I shall live, till death do us part", the key that made me last this long in the BIZ is the reality that I take this profession as a duty to serve with the highest degree of responsibility, integrity and yes ... courage to really be able to function as the medium, the channel that the people can trust to tell no less than the truth.
Now, a year shy on my 20th year as a journalist, I decided to go solo, independent, free.
I am not about to change lanes. Let's just say that I am just about taking my craft to a different direction sans network packaging, branding pitch, imaging, merchandising, boundaries, limitations, considerations and yes--even corporate and political accommodations.
Don't get me wrong. There's really nothing wrong with the way networks handle the business of delivering news and current affairs. Everything, good and bad, is all part of the over-all package. It is just the way television exists.
If not for the networks, would I be Arlyn dela Cruz? Would my name ring a bell? Come on, who am I kidding? I owe it to the networks for the networks provided me the medium to reach to millions of viewers, making me a household name.
As a journalist I was dubbed as tough, fearless, "a legendary" and scoop-hungry reporter. I risk taker, One even said, I am hustler for scoops and exclusive and I am addicted to being always the first to get not just a story, but the biggest story, breaking at a given period.
I'd been through it all and as they say, been there, done that.
Now I want to do it in an "indie" type, a move that could really be scary in a world still dominated by mainstream television and network giants.
But hey, a man's got to do, what he's got to do and I am not about to back out on something that I challenged myself to do. It's time to see just how tough and how daring I really am by venturing into really truly independent documentaries, productions and shows under my own production team.
The idea is to engage in co-production ventures of different kinds, but with heavy attention on current affairs and investigative reports and documentaries. (http://www.journalistasfilmmaker.weebly.com)
One point of clarification though, I am not severing ties with the networks and publications that I am connected as a freelance journalist/on-cam talent and writer/contributor. You'll still see me at NET-25, read my articles at the Philippine Daily Inquirer, for as long as there's mutual commitment to continue the professional engagement.
You can say that I just decided to push forward a new take on my already rich, eventful and colorful and undeniably controversial career as a journalist.
20 years!!!!Whew!! Yes---I am in the biz that long and hopefully I still get to be around working as a journalist until my "grandma" days just like my idols Mr. Gabby Tabunar, Philippine Correspondent for CBS News and Ms. Zeny Silva of the Associated Press and part-time Iskupera of "DZMM-Radyo Patrol."
I feel nostalgic at this point...
Officially and that means an actual ON-AIR report, my career began on April 17, 1990.
It was Ding Gagelonia, then station manager of DZBB-Bisig Bayan of GMA-7 and Tony Seva, Vice President for Radio Operations who opened the doors for me.
I did say I was persistent, right? I guess, looking back, that's how it began for me.
Ding can best tell the story on why he took me in, but I was certain, he simply wanted to get rid of me the day that I applied that's why he hired me. How's that? You see, I was still in college, my finals week, when I applied for a reportorial job at DZBB. The process of taking in new reporters should have been in stages, that was the plan. Interview, first day, writing test the next, actual/simulated reporting the third day.
But guess what I did? I managed to convince Ding to give me all the exams in one day since I cannot afford to return to Quezon City for the next two days. "Tumakas lang po ako," I told him.
It was my finals week in college when I took a bus ride from Olongapo City to Quezon City to apply as a reporter .It was my first time to travel in Metro Manila alone, with only my bus fare and pang-meryenda money in my pocket, and with no relative to stay with in the big city.
I was not prepared to take "No" for an answer and certainly not the "we'll call you" response. I did not leave Ding's office until I got what I wanted, and until I am sure as certain, I am in by giving my best foot forward.
On my way to Quezon City, while still in the bus, I imagined I would be hired and that I would be starting right away. Hey, this girl is from Olongapo and I do AIM HIGH. Besides, I knew I was ready.
When Ding finally said---YES---You're hired, I almost embraced him, jump, scream and cry, all at the same time. It was an answered prayer.
From that day onwards, there was no turning back.
The week after I was taken in, my first assignment was to man the desk on a Holy Week when the radio station was on a yearly break and I was alone in the booth, waiting for something to happen that never did.I thought that would be "it" for me, someone manning the desk but it did not take look for Ding to deploy me to the field. I will never forget my first ON-AIR report.
"Paano ba naman, akala ko, first day, last day ko na din!"
My first field deployment as a radio reporter for DZBB-GMA-7 was a bank robbery in progress in Sucat, Paranaque. A police pursuit operation followed. With my first partner and pilot, Bodgie Sonza, now a seasoned and battle-tested cameraman for GMA-7, I delivered my first report that actually turned out to be a real scoop, my first scoop on the air!
Trembling, almost fainting with shock because of the running gun-battle unfolding before my very eyes, I delivered my report on the spot.
How can someone from a small city in Central Luzon be prepared for a live and life-threatening gun-battle such as that one in Sucat, some 20 years back?
What if the bullets hit me? First day, last day of my career? Oh no, that's not going to be my career story and so that very minute, I made a decision to conquer my fears. Forget the bullets, go on and report girl! "Anong bala, bala? Sugod!!!"
The answer really is you don't prepare for anything like this. You just have to face it and deliver the news, no ifs and buts. It's not about you. It's about the story. It has to be told. And in this job---telling the story is always NOW.
Little did I know that my first report on radio would be the preview of the many actual police and military operations that I would cover in the next 19 years.
I reported every story there is to report, every story that I was assigned to pursue and I still feel I have not covered all areas.
But you know what? The real juicy stories are those that are considered behind the story, stories!
Through this space, I intend to share some of the behind the story, stories that I gathered through the years, as insights and opinions.
It's time to tell them. Only the worthy and meaningful ones.
The time has come. This is the time. This is the medium.
I have said a mouthful. I think you all get what I mean.
Welcome and join me as I explore a new era in the history of my career as a journalist.
Makibahagi sa mga susunod na pahina.
And by the way you can share me your stories and together, we will tell that story you entrusted me. We will find the answers too to the things that need to be investigated and exposed.
Oo nga pala---"TULOY PO KAYO."
ADC PRODUCTIONS (http:www.journalistasfilmmaker.weebly.com)
This is a related site I created courtesy of WEEBLY.
The focus of this related site is more on the films, documentaries, programs/shows, engagements and other projects of ADC Productions, most are actually co-production in nature.
Of by the way, Cesar Apolinario, my good friend and colleague in media asked me, why WEEBLY? It's simple and functional. It serves the purpose and it's very easy to use. Millions are already hooked to Weebly, I believe that's a fact and I can attest to the many reasons why they chose this Website and Blog Hosting among the many.
PAGES BY ARLYN DELA CRUZ (http://pagesbyarlyndelacruz.i.ph)
Pages by Arlyn dela Cruz was done ahead of these two related sites on WEEBLY.
It's more of personal musings of this journalist, thinking aloud, spilling my thoughts on anything under the sun. Entries are in English and Filipino, sometimes combination, or what we refer to as Tag-lish. Some entries are about serious matters, others not so, trivial and inconsequential matters even.But hey---it's a blog, a "techie" version of the hardbound diary I used to keep in my younger years. Yes, in many ways, blogs are actually the diaries of this generation.
A similar blog, with the same title page is also found in my Friendster Account. You guess it right, I have turned into one, a blog addict, that is!
KATRINA GRETA'S KINGDOM
Pardon the promotion but modesty aside...this writer is my eldest child.
Katrina Greta is far more imaginative, engaging, daring and passionate about her writing that I was when I was her age.
They say there are people who are born writers and this girl is certainly one of them, a gift from God.
How would they describe her in a simpler way these days?
Oh, I remember, Disney-style, ala Hanna Montana, ala Raven even...She rocks!!!!
I am a big fan and a big supporter not just because I am her mom.
Say no more Arlyn and just invite them to visit her website also hosted by WEEBLY.
DOMINIQUE'S WONDERFUL LIFE INDEED!
My Nica, (sounds like manika---could be--for she's a doll indeed, but one that is full of life with a lot of love to share) would be the first to say that she's not a writer. Well--maybe not yet. She'll get her groove in the world of words one day.
But make no mistake she knows this early who she is and what she wants to do and oh boy, she wants to do many things.
"I am an artist," she told us one day, then the next time, she insisted, "I would be a chef and run my own restaurant," then another instance, she told us, "she would be a fashion and interior designer all in one," the next day, she's dolling up her ate Katrina, doing her make-up, and this early, has her ate as her first major client as a "stylist".
A child who sees everything in full colors---welcome to her wonderful life.