Saturday, May 9, 2009

The End Of A Long Week...

For the first time in a while (since the Inauguration, more or less), I had such a busy work week that I was able to actually able to say "TGIF" with a sense of legitimate relief. (That also explains why my blogging trailed off so badly in the past few days!)

Not only did I work three days at two different employers, but I was also crushed with a late deadline to get a separate freelance writing/producing project done. In the grand scheme of things, I have had much more hectic weeks in my career, but it was still pretty packed - and I was quite pleased to sleep in this morning.

It actually felt good to feel tired from working - and it's a feeling I wish I had on a more consistent basis. Fortunately, as Memorial Day approaches, so does vacation season. I have already added on a new freelance client, and I am hoping for a very busy summer.

Part of the reason for my fatigue was unexpected stress at WMAL. For the first time since returning there as a freelancer, I was assigned to anchor the afternoon news. I didn't think much at first about the assignment. I was News Director there for 13 years, and the newscasts they do today are essentially the same as the ones I used to keep watch over. BUT - it did not really dawn on me until I was in the middle of working my first day that I had not actually worked that shift in perhaps a decade.

I had no problem at all going back to WMAL after six months away to work in mornings, because I had been a morning regular. But afternoons turned out to be a different story. The newscasts had different intros and outros. I had to learn how to play commercials, which I did not have to do in mornings. The type of stories and the source of stories are different in the afternoon than the mornings. And most importantly, I had NO sense of rhythm working in the afternoon - There was not a routine in place. In the morning, I could tell whether I was ahead or behind totally by instinct. Working the afternoon, even though there is less actual work, I felt like I was running late the entire day. That proved to be quite stressful, and I bit off more than one innocent colleagues' head. By the time the shift was over, I was beat.

The second day in the afternoon proved to be much better, but still just a bit of an out-of-body experience. I get one more shot at PM drive on Monday.

But first, I'm going to enjoy the weekend - like regular people do!

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