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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Welcome to Public Radio

Or perhaps, it's welcome back to live, living radio...I passed my "Stern Test," as I noted yesterday on WITF as the local host for "Morning Edition."  I give myself a B-, as there were some glitches, but for the most part I have to say I am relieved.


If I'd not done well, I would be writing in a very different vein right now.  I'd be pissed off at myself.  But no, training kicked in pretty well.


My big thanks to Tim Lambert for being so patient and level-headed; he is in fact one of the more calm individuals in the building, and I appreciate it very much.


I was to do the first hour of the program, which ended up being most of the first two.  I'm still a little hazy about some of the prep work, but I got a little more of it down today.  There is an awful lot involved, but now I've been able to put my hands on a few other bits, and that helped a lot.


Tim made a very interesting and telling comment; he could tell how nervous and worried I was, but once the mic went on, I was smooth.  Nice. (Big sigh of relief).


As I've said, timing is very big when you're dealing with the network, but the log has all the times you need to hit.  How you get there is up to you; usually that's pretty easy to figure out, but there is for me a fair amount of checking myself, and reordering my brain to do things in a specific way.


Missed a couple of things here and there, but those are recoverable; and there's always little quirks about NPR that you need to know about.  Again, you learn as you go.


Tim stepped in at 5:30, due to a new local series that had to run, but now I kind of know what that's about.  He felt comfortable enough to let me run the second hour, which was very cool.  As he said, you have to swim a bit more.


So...I do the first two hours tomorrow morning.  Still nervous, but I have a little better handle on logistics and mechanics.  I actually feel relieved, and I don't think I did that bad a job.  I am unfailingly my own worst critic; actually, that is a failing of mine, because I am often very critical of my work, in any aspect.  I've learned over the years to be a bit more careful about trashing myself and my abilities.  As you get older, you get more calmed about stuff.


Of course, I woke up at 2 am, with a killer headache, that felt like bloody migraine was coming on.  Thankfully, Aleve combined with caffeine did the trick.  I was pretty numb upstairs at around 4:30, but I'd rather be that than squinting and barely able to read anything.


No, it went alright.  I feel better, safer, and I have a new challenge ahead. Public Radio, NPR, all that is stuff I have listened to for many years, but even being in the business, it's hard to tell how things run until you actually experience it.  It's not as easy as it looks or sounds.


At the same time, it is do-able.  If I can, anyone can.  


Okay, my motivational speech is over.  Need to crash sometime along; found time to write more on "Silk Road Days," and I have more ideas about building that story up so it works.  That is going to be a slow one; my first drafts can take weeks or days, depending on how into it I am, and how cogent an idea is in my brain.  Doesn't always happen.


So tomorrow, we go at it again.  Feeling ready to make this the next step in my career; yes, I'm a backup, but it's cool.  I am very happy to get this opportunity, and again, do something I've not done before.  A good stretch of my skill and my brains...whatever's left of them, anyway.


Oh...my old friend Casey tells me that those bright font colors are giving her a headache.  I used those because I couldn't see darker ones against the background myself.  Hopefully this is better.

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