Production Blogs

Putting on the best show

What to focus on and how to survive as future producing students.

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It was Tuesday evening when we wrapped our last show. I felt a bittersweet emotion in my stomach as I cheered with my co-producer and our team. “We did it,” I said, and I swallowed my tears. I was emotional that the production class has ended but simultaneously satisfied with everything I have learned.

I thought that, if I could do it all over again, I would do it differently. If I could only have more time to practice my producing skills, I would definitely be better in every aspect of putting a newscast together. For example, I have become faster with checking videos and building a rundown.

Well, at least I felt more confident creating a thirty-minute newscast. While I could sense my improvement, I couldn’t stop thinking about what I could have done better. In my mind, I was not good enough.

I couldn’t stop thinking of my mistakes and how much better I could have done. “If I only had a little more time,” I thought. The possibility that my next action could be wrong would sometimes stress me out so much that I would get frazzled. So, I knew that with more time and more practice I would get better at producing a newscast.

I had a hard time recognizing my achievements and how I pushed through regardless of doing this for the first time ever. I was always there, on time, met every single deadline and persevered even though I constantly felt fear of failure. The bottom line was that I was willing to work hard to learn how to produce a newscast.

For example, when the producer creates the newscast she has to have good news judgment to pick and choose the order of stories in the newscast. So, my solution was to write down the order of the TV news stories that I would watch every night, while I tried to understand why the producers made those choices.

My advice to future producers is not to be too hard on yourself. Look at yourself in an honest but kind way. Recognize what you need to improve and find a way to be better. Focus on learning and on solutions.

Open your mind to learn a different way. Yes, you might think that a story is important, but what if another one is even more important to your audience? Be open to being wrong. Be open to working hard and learning how to be the best version of yourself.

In the meantime, enjoy every moment in the newsroom because it goes by fast. Learn from your mistakes and move on. Remember, that you are there to put on the best show.

I can certainly promise you this: every time you produce a newscast it will get better. Even though you will make mistakes, take advantage of the opportunities to learn from them.

This story was written as an assignment in JOUR403: Television News Production with Professor Stacy Scholder. Annenberg Media student editors also reviewed the story and published it per newsroom guidelines.