Brevity or Reticence

When you’re first told that promos are 30 seconds in length you think, “Yeah, alright I can do that. Easy.” You look at the 30 seconds and think, “This is perfect, that’s such a short time requirement. This will be a piece of cake.” So you check your assignment, think of an idea for the subject matter, and start writing out your storyboard. You time it out, and realize it may run you about 40 seconds. You think to yourself, “That’s fine I’ll shave the extra seconds off in editing somewhere”

And that is where you are wrong. So very, very wrong.

It reminds me of the first time I used Twitter.

140 characters sounded like a generous amount of text to be able to use to spew my dim-witted opinions out into the ether, but then I tried to send my first tweet. I had my idea of what I wanted to say, and started typing out my complete thought, and by the time I finished it said I was 22 characters over. I tried abbreviating things, trimming the fat, being more concise, and after about 20 minutes I was still 12 characters over. All kerfuffulled and with a sweaty brow I looked down at my precious tweet; I realized two things. One, this just is not worth it and two, I don’t think I even agree with my own tweet 20 minutes later.

So I deleted it, and went along with my day.

It’s sort of like being an Olympic swimmer (or sprinter, both metaphors work) and trying to shave two seconds off your time. Two seconds doesn’t seem like a lot, but when the whole race only last about 40 seconds it’s actually a really big deal.

So, back to my original point. You film all the footage you need and return to editing, and you try so very desperately to cut it down to 30 seconds. And after you develop the nervous tic of pulling hairs out of your eyebrows, and you finally somehow manage to cut it down to 30 seconds while keeping the narrative integrity and avoid it becoming a bunch of nonsensical flashes of light. A fellow intern will kindly remind you that it needs to fade in and fade out to black, meaning you have to cut about another second or so.

It is of course no fault of the project’s or the assigner’s. It’s just going to take me awhile to train myself to condense my vision on a subject to 30 seconds and get a real feel for how much time that actually affords me to say what I need to. It’s just going to have to take some conditioning. But for now, it’s rough

One of my writing professors at MSU had a favorite saying that applied to the editing of papers and stories. He would say,

“I could have made it shorter, if only I’d had more time.”


Also, don’t think I wouldn’t leave you without a barrage of new pictures from around the office. My selfie-game has become ferocious. I even snapped one with the king himself, Brandon Wirth (wearing the Colts hat). The rest are pictures of Intern Eric Ripper and I holdin’ down the teleprompter and audio board respectively. Killin’ it on Beyond the Badge sonnnnn!




About afrankfort1

Alex is a graduate of Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a focus in Creative Writing. Equipped with a background/education in analytics, grammar, and public speaking, he also has a passion for storytelling (in any medium). During his time at HOMTV, Alex hopes to gain a proficient knowledge of production, camera work, and broadcasting.
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