There aren’t many things that can accurately be compared to working in a control room during a live national show — maybe zip lining over a or walking into a job interview you are definitely not qualified for.
For the uninitiated, it’s dark. The lighting is kept low to provide clear view of every one of the dozens of monitors showing dozens of camera angles, stills, b-roll, graphics, chyrons and …
One of my favorite parts of my job at the View combines my experience in writing and editorial curation with what was a brand new world of the technical side of TV.
It’s also special task because I believe it’s one of the most genuinely interactive parts of the show and really fulfills the concept of “all voices heard”. No matter how expertly crafted our panel is, there will always be people who can’t relate to the views of our hosts — and their takes are important, too.
If you’re interested in the craziness of my day-to-day life in the control room, read on…
Less than two hours before the show, the topics are decided to the best of the producers’ and hosts’ ability (there’s always breaking news and heated conversation that can switch things up.) I scribble them down, compose call-outs on Facebook and Twitter, often accompanied with ABC News articles (love those guys), gather the best responses to questions relating to news or lifestyle opinions, clean them up, get Standards’ blessing and prioritize them by juiciness — for air, in what is often less than 30 minutes.
Fast-paced, wild and scintillating, it’s still not the hardest hour of my day.
From 11 to 12, our show is airing across the East Coast. I deal with the director, technical director, assistant director directly to roll audience feedback into the show. Live. It’s a white-knuckle, brisk, terrifying process accounting for other elements rolling into the show, where the discussion is headed, making sure everything is spelled right and Kosher.
I’m often also clipping video for short form, writing and proofing language to accompany video on socials, taking notes — and times, even writing a story for ABCNews.com at the same time.
Of course, it’s stressful. Things go wrong, the whole country could see it — and many times there’s nothing to do but take the blame. This process specifically has taught me innumerable lessons in keeping my cool, staying quick on my feet, picking up and using as much information as possible to make a decision quickly…
And as much as this process can be aggravating, I am thankful for how it’s helped me grow.