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What's the most you've ever worked in one day/week ?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by schiezainc, May 7, 2008.

  1. schiezainc

    schiezainc Well-Known Member

    So, it's 4:52 a.m. and I'm in the middle of a break in between laying out two newspapers.

    I am currently eight minutes away from hitting hour #14 straight today and am still looking at around three more before all is said and done.

    That got me thinking. What's the most you've ever worked straight? Most you've ever worked in one day? About a week?

    Has there ever been some project/story/production that just kicked the crap out of you and what do you remember from it? How did you get through it? Would you ever do it again?

    For me, the most I've ever worked thus far (granted, I'm only 23) is 21 hours straight, the most I've ever worked in one week is 85 hours. Both have been for the same company I'm at now, and both have been thanks to our publisher violently understaffing us.

    But, on the plus side, since my company frowns on OT, I'm usually sitting back from Thursday-Sunday with only maybe three hours left. It's good if I can get through the marathon sessions.
     
  2. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    I'd say, the most was approx. 16 hours. I went in to my small p.m. daily, spent 3 hours putting out that afternoon's section, took a couple-hour break, then drove three hours to my local hoops team's state playoff game. Covered the game, then drove three hours back, getting in around 1 a.m.

    If I had wanted to, I could have gone home and come back in at 6 a.m. But I wanted a full 8 hours of sleep. , I decided to write the gamer, and paginiate my pages at 3 a.m., leaving a space for anything to be plugged in if any sports news broke in the morning and went home at 3:30 a.m.

    That week, including driving to different games, was around a 70 hour week. Got paid for about 60 hours of it. (management didn't consider travel time to be paid time).
     
  3. A week this past March, worked 43 hours and six consecutive days while going to school full time.
     
  4. cranberry

    cranberry Well-Known Member

    My senior year in college, I had an 18-credit course load and worked two jobs, including my first newspaper job, for a total of about 50 hours a week. After work and studying, I slept 2-3 hours a night, tops, and never, ever minded it.
     
  5. OnTheRiver

    OnTheRiver Active Member

    Worked 26 consecutive hours when a tornado came through town back in 2005. Had started a shift the day before, at noon on a Saturday, getting the Sunday paper ready.

    Was walking out the door around 1 a.m. when the storms got bad, tornado hit a few minutes later .... 25 people killed in two counties.

    Didn't go home until 2 p.m. the next day.

    Ran on adrenaline till around noon. Later, I fell asleep at my desk. That's when the boss said it was time for someone to drive me home.
     
  6. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    96 hours in a six-day stretch for the state basketball tourney in 2005.
    150 hours in 11 consecutive days this year for the state high school basketball regionals and finals.
     
  7. OnTheRiver

    OnTheRiver Active Member

    I bet you were fuckin' swell when the end of that rolled around.
     
  8. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    I wasn't too peachy during it either.
     
  9. OnTheRiver

    OnTheRiver Active Member

    150 hours in 11 days isn't out of the realm of reality, if you're, you know ... an FBI agent on the trail of a ruthless serial killer who must be stopped to save lives.

    Short of that, you're the Jack Bauer of covering high school basketball.
     
  10. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    I've worked 15-18 hours plenty of times. We're a PM during the week, an AM on weekends, and on Fridays we put out two papers. I've come in around 6 a.m. to do the morning paper, leave around noon for lunch and a nap, then come back around 3 or 4 and go until midnight for the Saturday paper. As long as I get that hour or two to nap, I'm golden.
    Worked about 16 hours straight one Thanksgiving, though. Drove three hours to cover a college football game, then had computer issues when I was trying to send the story around midnight. Drove back to the office (it took about four hours because of bad weather and bad tires) and had to retype the whole thing into our office computer. I did a few other things while I was there, and finished up as the SE was coming in at 6 a.m. to put out Friday's paper.

    Most I've worked in a week at the paper is about 65 when the SE was on vacation. Most ever was about 75 when I worked at Six Flags in college. It was my last week before going back to school, and I wanted a monster paycheck. I was also curious to see if I could get away with it. Came in when the park opened at 10, left when it closed at 11. Did that for six days. Got my monster check, but also wasn't rehired the next summer. Assholes.
     
  11. TheMethod

    TheMethod Member

    These stories blow me away. I've never even come close to that. Actually, my longest days were when I was a part-timer. They'd ask me to cover some bullshit at, like, 9 a.m. on a Saturday morning, then have me scheduled for a desk shift that night. I lived 30 minutes from the paper's town, too, so I was screwed if I went back home and screwed if I stayed in town.

    As a full-timer, I'd say NFL training camp days can get pretty long, and the NCAA Tournament off days are long, but nothing like 15 hours.
     
  12. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Active Member

    Whatever you're working now, in your busiest weeks, double it.
    Then you might be able to carve out a series of jobs (career? not so much) in this journalism game to provide food, shelter and clothing.

    Sound like a raw deal? Then get. Out. Now.
     
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