A Random Day
I didn't have a specific topic to cover in today's post, and I realized that while I do a lot of retrospective musing on how I feel or what my goals are, I never really focus on the moment at hand. So I figured I could talk about what I did today. Just a little slice of what this year has been like so far.
I woke up at 11:30 in the morning, which was late even for me. The reasoning for this was that I went to bed at 4 in the morning last night. I had originally scheduled myself to write next week's first draft yesterday, and while I came up with a topic and put together note outlines, I didn't actually write the script.
So when midnight rolled around I figured I could go to bed like a normal person, or I could be stubborn, stay up, and start the script so I could still get it done before today. I wasn't pressed for time so the first option was the most rational. Naturally I went with the second option.
A few hours later and I had a first draft all finished up. I knew it was going to mess with my sleep, but my logic was that it was 4 hours of work I wouldn't have to do the next day, so it all evened out.
Now normally I'm free to attack the day however I please, but Thursdays are reserved for working on the TTA, which I record with Christine. So to that end, I had to find out when she'd be free to record and work around that. I had already compiled our show notes the day before, and as it would turn out she wouldn't be able to record until 3, so I had a few hours to kill.
The only other "must do" on my list was this blog post, and I save these for late at night because that's when I'm in the writing mood. So if I'm being honest, I just chilled for those few hours.
I don't know if it's some kind of deep seeded rebellion against the standard workday, or just how I wired myself growing up, but I'm a night person. I can get far more done between the hours of 11pm and 4am than I ever could between 11am and 4pm. Back when I had the day job I didn't have much of a choice since I had to use whatever free time I could find, but those days are over (for now).
So I've been embracing my own natural inclinations and as a result I'm usually doing my time-off relaxing during the day, and saving all the work for night. So I spent the early afternoon whipping up some breakfast (lunch), showering and looking like a productive human being, and then playing some games before we were to record. I'm currently playing Surviving Mars, this really slow paced Mars colonization simulator. Worth checking out if you like city sims.
From 3 to 4 we recorded Friday's TTA. I've live streamed these sessions in the past, but it's essentially just a Skype call where we go down the show notes and talk Disney. For the most part what you hear is what you get, so for a 35 minutes show we'll usually record 40 minutes of audio with 10-20 minutes of just chatting before and after.
Normally I try to put a few hours in between the recording and editing stage, so I can approach it with fresh ears, but I had other stuff I wanted to work on today so instead I went right into editing. Editing essentially involves listening to the entire call again and editing out any long pauses, interruptions, sniffs, sneezes, coughs and anything else that you normally don't want to hear in your ears on a podcast. It usually takes however long the podcast is, plus about 20-30 minutes because I need to stop, make the edits, listen again, and so on.
Once that's finished the rest of the work is pretty easy. Just a quick upload to LibSyn with a new title and description, and all done. So after that I shifted my focus after that onto some errands around the apartment (read: cleaning) followed by some food shopping so that I could make lunch (read: dinner).
Now if all I was doing was my one YouTube video a week, this would probably be where my day ends. Of course it wouldn't actually end. No matter the day, the remaining hours are usually spent periodically checking and responding to e-mails, tweets, and comments, but since all of that can be done from a phone, it'd basically end. Kat's been at rehearsals in the evenings, so having the night to myself I decided to work on this side project I've got going on:
One thing I've wanted to do for almost a year now is build the ultimate Disney B-Roll reel set so that I could turn to it whenever I needed to work on a video. It would be a set of videos I could use to either plug in b-roll for a specific ride, or just general b-roll of the parks altogether just to give the viewer a break from this face.
The process would involve going through literally all of my HD Disney footage, picking out the good b-roll shots, trimming them down, color correcting them, organizing them, and then stabilizing them.
Then I would make various versions of the video:
- Ride specific: Where all of the footage is ordered by park and then ride, so that I could go into the clip and pull out that ride's section for any videos about that very ride.
- Park specific: Where all of the footage is ordered by park, but beyond that it's randomized to make more of a generalized montage.
- Disney specific: Where all of the footage is randomized. For when I just need generic Walt Disney World b-roll. I'd want to make 3 or 4 of these that I could rotate through so that shots don't get too repetitive.
It's a lot of upfront work, but considering how much b-roll makes it into my videos, the time I'd save editing every week would more than make up for it.
Today I'm still at the "go through all my footage stage". I went through all of last April's trip footage tonight while watching Captain America: Civil War. The footage itself amounted to about 18 hours, but when you're skimming fast and skipping the vlog stuff, it cuts down pretty quickly. There were of course moments where I just stopped to watch the movie because, come on, that airport sequence was so good.
After a couple of hours of that, I took a break to play an hour more of Surviving Mars, and then I finished up the night by taking care of some channel business. I'm trying to build a deck that I can send to potential sponsors so that they can better learn about who I am, what audience I reach, and how my videos perform.
And now it's after midnight, and while any other day I'd just be getting started and perhaps would spend the rest of the night writing some Disney D&D stuff, tonight I sleep. Kat's dress rehearsal is tomorrow and I'm going to see it, so I've gotta be awake at 8am.
All in all, if I compared it to a day at my old office, I'd guess that I probably put in twice as much work today than I did back then. I don't know if it's because I'm fooling myself, or because I actually am.
Either way, I've never been happier.