Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Deadlines vs. Lifelines

I have a deadline problem.
Every newspaper and magazine editor has deadlines. I am no different from them. I have been keeping deadlines for 30 years. (Wow, some of you aren't even 30 years old!)
Deadlines are everything. Nothing is more important than a deadline.
I remember once, as Junior Editor of Showbusiness Newspaper, I was faced with a Wednesday afternoon deadline, and my publisher, editor and star columnist were in jail. Yes, jail. (Long story. They were arrested at the office of one of our advertisers whom they were dealing with after they found out his ad was a scam. Really long story. Believe me.)
The paper had to get out, but the main men were in jail. I actually walked to the police station on Ninth Avenue in Manhattan with a pencil and pad of paper, handed it to the policeman on duty, waited an hour, received back my publisher's editorial written in long hand on the paper, and then rushed to my office, typed up the editorial and put the issue to bed.
Nothing gets in the way of a deadline.
The world can go to pot, but the deadline must be met.
In my case, there's only one problem with that. I also have a Life-line.
When the world spins and "stuff happens," I feel the need to be part of the event. Sometimes it's a national event, sometimes local and sometimes family. I try to say, "Sorry, I'm on a deadline." Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
Choose Life-line: Last night I closed my computer and drove to my children to help with the house and kids, because my daughter-in-law has the flu. Sorry, deadline.
Then there are times when the deadline wins: Efratians went to Negohot today to show their support after a young woman was firebombed there. They also went to the PM's house to protest the freeze. Those are very important events. My friends are there out in the streets and I'm in my office.
I guess I choose the deadline over the Life-line by specific criteria.
* If the event will be attended (or can be handled) by others, and they don't really need me, I don't go. So, I won't get the scoop. I'm not really a scoop chaser. (You'll have to read the story I missed writing on Jpost or Israel National News.)
* If my presence would make a difference (or if I'm the only one who could do a specific thing), then I choose the Life-line and everything else has to wait.
I guess I'm writing this because this week is my deadline, and I also have so many Life-lines calling me. A tough dilemma.
Anyway, if ever Voices Magazine is late or a VoicesTV movie, you'll know why. I chose the LIFE-LINE.

1 comment:

  1. I hope your daughter in law feels better now.