Arabella Ahearn, Emma Frank, Feronia Ding and Remy Savell-McKean
I remember my first ever Mary Word meeting, I walked halfway into GBC 2.11 at the start of year ten, waited until my friends sat down, and then made a split second decision to go and buy a jelly cup from the canteen instead. It was worth it. Despite the initial missteps, three years later, I am writing this with a week left of high school and (almost) five published editions as Editor in Chief of the school newspaper, and I am eternally grateful for whatever strange decisions I made to get me to this point.
The Mary Word has been an opportunity for me to not only voice my many opinions, exploring topics that (unfortunately) have no place in my HSC coursework, but also a place for me to connect with other students, many of whom I have fostered strong friendships with over the last few years, and with teachers who have given up their time to ensure that we have the opportunity to express ourselves, in whatever form that may take. Whilst I know for a fact that my first article, a hastily written review of Greta Gerwig’s Ladybird, for the 2020 graduation issue, was by no means a journalistic marvel, here I am three years later, alongside three of my wonderful friends who have led with me over the past year, who have spent every Monday and Wednesday lunch with me going over the ins and outs of issues and editing, finding myself inordinately sad to be leaving it all behind.
I am incredibly proud of everything we have achieved as a newspaper this year, not only as an editing team but as a group of girls, from all year groups, who have something that they want to say, and have made the effort to say it. I know that whatever I end up doing in university, and in the future, the three years I have spent organising celebrity Halloween costumes and funny glee moments into comprehensive lists have not been in vain.
In saying all this, I would especially like to thank Mr Scali, without whom the paper would no doubt be a shell of what he has allowed it to become under his leadership, it has been a privilege to be a part of the team.
That’s a wrap, I guess! x
I had a bit of a belated start to my journey with The Mary Word. I wrote my first article, approximately two years ago for the graduation issue for the class of 2020. And now, it’s 2022 and the time has come for us to inevitably leave the cocoon of Loreto to be thrust into the ‘real world.’ The Mary Word has always been a medium to express myself, with any fit of rage or niche interest having its’ place within an upcoming edition. Relevant or not to the theme, my writing would always be accepted to decorate the tessera of articles, videos and podcasts that were home to the newspaper. In that way, I think the newspaper has always served an important role within the school community as a sort of ‘voice of the people.’
Assuming the role of one of the Editors in Chief, I had the privilege of working with a group of highly talented girls (who also happened to be my friends which was a bonus!) to manage the paper. Albeit, there were many initial challenges, including but not limited to: coming back from online learning with dwindling numbers, disorienting room changes, being sabotaged at the EC Fair, La-Nina and her sister Covid. But in the end, everything worked out thanks to the sustained efforts of our team in spite of it all. I will forever treasure the sense of community and camaraderie, and I most certainly will never forget the feeling of collective satisfaction of pressing publish on a finalised edition.
I hope everyone has enjoyed this past year, whether you are a reader or a writer. We seriously could not do this without you. I know we will be leaving The Mary Word in safe hands for 2023 and I will definitely be coming back to read it well into my university years. In short, it’s been a pleasure.
Viva la Mary Word!
I still remember stepping into GBC 2.11 at the end of Year 9 and just catching the end of the Mary Word’s goodbye party for 2019. I had been reluctant to go inside at first, fearful of the older girls and the seemingly formal structure of the newspaper but I did eventually wander inside, my curiosity taking over. My journey with The Mary Word has certainly evolved much since then, and when I look back at my time at Loreto, I am really grateful I joined.
The Mary Word has always been such a wonderfully creative space for every member to express themselves and I have certainly experienced all the benefits of being a part of the newspaper. From being able to work alongside all my lovely, talented friends, to being given the opportunity to write about my favourite films and media, the school newspaper has always been a facilitator of joy for me, a space in which I have felt comfortable communicating my thoughts and opinions on various topics (especially the ending of Killing Eve - I don't think I'll ever get over it!)
I will never forget the pride and accomplishment I felt at our first published issue as Editors-in-Chief (The Witchy Word) which had come out just in time for Halloween, an assortment of all things spooky and an issue that I will forever hold in my heart. Arranging and publishing each issue over this past year has been a gift. It certainly has not been easy every time, but it has invariably sparked a sense of intense satisfaction and awe at the talents of The Mary Word members, every time. I will miss the weekly meetings after I graduate, but I will, of course, continue my journey as a long-time subscriber (and supporter) of The Mary Word.
Over these last few years, many events have made our school life uncertain and confusing but through it all, The Mary Word has survived! And that’s got to count for something.
Although I had a bit of a delayed introduction to The Mary Word, it has made my senior years at Loreto that much more exciting and overall, more enjoyable. I quickly found out after joining the school newspaper in Term 1 of Year 11, that it was the most creative and insightful extra-curricular I had been a part of. It was so inspiring seeing students in all years engage so intuitively in the creation of each issue. It truly dawned on me how important participating in this program was and how I wanted to contribute something new to it. Witnessing how much work not only the editors were putting in but also members from year 7-11 motivated me to push myself to create bigger and better.
I remember the day that I was offered the role of Design Editor I experienced a slew of emotions. One on hand I was riddled with nerves, I was feeling an immense amount of pressure at the possibility that I; Remy Savell-McKean was going to be the sole reason for The Mary Word’s downfall due to my horrendous designs. On the other hand, I saw an outstanding opportunity to fulfil a goal I had set for myself at the beginning of Year 11, to contribute something meaningful to The Mary Word. That is up to the readers if I completed that goal or not. I like to convince myself that I did.
Being a part of the school newspaper, specifically as Design Editor, has only affirmed and cemented the passions that I plan to exercise once I graduate and go on to bigger, more intimidating things. I will never forget the incredible feeling I had once we published our first issue as the new Editor team. That strange feeling of relief but the remaining anxiousness I had about the possible reception of the ‘Witchy Word’. To this day I still herald this as our finest issue and I had never felt so immensely proud to have been a part of a project.
Just a tip for future editors and design editors: always remember, even when you are scrambling last minute to complete an issue, to trust yourself and don’t panic. Even when you least expect it, The Mary Word will always prevail! I know that sounded a bit threatening but it’s true.
Thank you to everyone who have been a part of The Mary Word and helped to make our final year so rewarding!