I work on live television shows. Actually, I work on “live” television shows.

Of course, 90% of what we do on a daily basis is going out to airways in real time. But, the other small percentage is pretaped ahead of time and played back as live. Nothing to mislead the viewer, but if an anchor has a lengthy copy to read on camera it might get “put on tape” prior to the show to avoid tongue twisting moments. When I am sitting in the control room watching the talent fumble over and over (and over) on their words, I-along with coworkers-roll our eyes and let out exasperated sighs. Many times it has been commented “Come on, how hard is it to just r-e-a-ddddd.” We can’t understand why we are suddenly on take nine of a 20 second standup.

Well, after making my presentation, I have found my compassion. The slideshow with voice-over took double the amount of anticipated time. The luxury of knowing a “redo” was possible took the immediate pressure off. Perhaps, it was this that led to trip up of words, stumbling of sentences, and a sneaky cough or two. The amount of outtakes is not a number I am broadcasting, but I would have been lucky if it was nine.

I wanted to appear cool and collected, making it seem the slideshow was done in one easy-breezy take. But the reality is, it was not. And neither are the professionals who earn a living reading the teleprompter.  It was a chilling comparison.

It takes much effort to appear effortless.

(Module 8 Short Post)