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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

If It Ain't Broke...


Well, maybe I shouldn't say "almost always broken."  Most of the stories we write are good, but could use that extra bit of "oomph" to make them great.

Copy editing, checking videos, checking graphics, going through the rundown to make sure everything is's all part of our quality control process as producers.  As the lead producer, I was perhaps more concerned with making sure the stories are all in place and making sure that everything was written.  I copy edit when I can (and will sometimes bounce ideas off the anchors or reporters to make their scripts sound better).  I'm checking wires to see if any stories have new developments (like that Missing Girl story that actually did change during the day).  Sometimes I'll even make sure videos are edited correctly--and if they aren't, advise on how to make it right.

That being said, it's difficult to juggle all of these at once.  (I've been saying that a lot in my blogs, I've noticed, but it's true.)  But I think I've established a pretty effective workflow as I go about the day, and I go more or less in this order:

  • Copy edit my own scripts first.
  • Check wires and edit stories accordingly, if there are any new developments.
  • Check in with co-producers to see if any videos or graphics need special attention.
  • Once reporters and MJs start trickling in, check in with them to make sure they know what the formatting of their story is.
  • Check the rundown and make sure things are in the right order and that scripts are written--if they aren't, assign someone to it or write it myself.
  • Continually check in with editors and address any troubles or roadblocks they face.

I find that, regardless of what role I have that day, this seems to work the best.  And considering the show's proverbial train hasn't come completely off the rails (yet), I think it's proven its worth as well.

Now remind me to print this out and have it next to my desk in the morning.

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