I got the idea for this blog post from a very talented writer that I work with. She talked about “a day in the life” for her at our place of employment. Check out her post and leave her some feedback. I give her some credit for the making of this post. Click here to check out her post. Also, be sure to follow her on Twitter @_tarad_
I am a very lucky individual.
Not many people can look at their lives and truly enjoy what they do for work. I consider myself a part of the lucky, fortunate, and appreciative few.
I have always loved the news. It is the most basic form of storytelling that reaches a very large audience. You are always looking and researching for the next big event to happen so you can be the first (and most accurate) to report it. Storytelling is an extremely important part of our lives, and the news is one of the main mediums to give us those stories.
I work at a Cincinnati news station where I work as a production assistant. What’s a production assistant? Basically, it is the ‘behind the scenes’ job in the studio. I operate studio cameras, work the teleprompter, run scripts, and floor direct. It a very basic position that doesn’t pay much and is only part time (but with full-time hours.) With the low pay, you’d wonder why I would even take the job in the first place. However, it’s the people, the atmosphere, and the experience that is richer than any payment I could receive.
The people I work with are at the top of their game at all times. The anchors are people who have worked in the news industry for many years and could easily be blinded by their own celebrity. I was amazed at how down-to-Earth the anchors are and how they are very easy to talk to. This is something that you can’t help but have a great respect for. Too often, we hear about anchors being prima donnas and only care about how they look on TV and shoving everyone else beneath them. This news station is not like that in any way. Also, as a current college student, they are my professors outside of the classroom. I get a hands-on look at the news business and see how it operates from the inside-out. That’s is something you can’t possibly learn in any classroom or textbook. The anchors, along with the other PAs, the producers, and everyone else are what make me continue to love what I do and realize that working in this industry is exactly what I want to do with my life (what specifically I want to do… that’s another story.)
As for the newsroom atmosphere, I want to quote a co-worker:
Amidst all of the wonderfulness, the station is very much like a casino. You get caught up in the hustle and bustle and distracted by all of the lights, but often lose track of time and your original intentions. Working six days straight is more full time than it is part time, but I find myself falling into the motions.
The newsroom can be a crazy place sometimes, but it can also be a dull place. I love it a lot more when it is crazy. When breaking news happens, crap can hit the fan extremely fast. People run around yelling expletives and on the phone for what seems like hours, trying to get the most up-to-date-information. When you work with people who are focused on getting the whole story, you develop a sense of pride of working for, and with, those who are some of the best in the field. Since we live in an age where ‘the media’ is often vilified for being… well… the media, I find extreme honor to work with those who stand for everything that news used to stand for in the age of people like Cronkite and Murrow. With every breaking news story, I learn a little more about the news gathering process and develop my journalistic ethics every step of the way (and also look at the whole industry in a completely different light.)
The experience is something that will carry me throughout the remainder of my college years and the real world. If I don’t find a job at my current station, I am set up for the possibility to work in any news station. The work, the people, and the atmosphere help me with my journey of life, which is still in its infancy.
Life is all about storytelling. We live as storytellers. Some are better than others. I am extremely lucky to work with some of the best storytellers in the news industry. I only wish I can one day be on the level as those who I look up to now. But with some hard work, maybe I can be the ultimate storyteller, like those who have been doing it for a number of years.
As with every story, this post has reached its inevitable end.
Be sure to follow me on Twitter for everything CFDD and my view on current events: @ryanfinfrock