Except for the parts he gave us for exclusive use:) The diary is written in the third person, as the editor was advised to do so by a psychologist, after the editor went through a mild nervous breakdown for the third time in the past three months.
Wednesday, December 2017
From the life of a perfect editor…
He wakes up right before the alarm starts, well-rested and fresh as the first flower in spring. He can’t wait to spend the day abounding in creative work at the agency he’ll head for unhurriedly in about 90 minutes. He’s got all nicely planned; he’ll start by checking the emails to see what texts have come from external authors, he’ll edit them, search for photos, and then he’ll take a leisure discussion with the graphic designer about the layout of a very urgent project for a new customer and of a poster for a regular customer.
Meanwhile, at the Real editor’s home…
The alarm goes on. After 3 minutes of buzzing, it stops.
The phone alarm is sounding… unfortunately, the snooze function is on, but instead of snoozing, the editor falls into a deep sleep which lasts till 9:30 a.m. When he wakes up the moment he should already be joyfully editing texts for a very urgent project – now a very late project! – the only word that comes to his mind is unmentionable. He repeats it twice when he realizes he’s got seven unanswered calls from work.
The editor rushes into the office… He doesn’t even try to explain that he’s been working till late on an article for a customer, because working till late when the deadline is in three days is nothing exceptional, and there’s no point trying to change that. While drinking his first coffee, he calls the customer to explain that the layout is already in the designing stage, and then starts begging the graphic designers to take care of this task. Unfortunately, all the designers are busy with the commissions which came this morning, because suddenly all the customers realized that this year Christmas is already in December, and right after it – just imagine – there’ll be the end of the year! So everybody is designing Christmas cards with reindeers and Christmas balls referring to customers’ products, brands and companies – in a creative way!
Still no changes. The designers are busy with the Christmas balls, the editor is biting his fingers, in the meantime trying to find out what the customer’s expectations are regarding a poster. As soon as he gets the reply – “Make it follow all the company’s values!” – he starts meditating on how to combine all the company’s 12 key values in a short catchy phrase…
The editor has come up with a few phrases for the poster, two of which he finds satisfying… Luckily, one of the graphic designers has finished the Christmas cards, and the customer accepted the four versions of a 3D snowman in just 15 minutes. The editor hunts the designer down like a hawk. He asks him to take care of an urgent project (mainly a brochure about production in one of the customer’s production plants) and then to design a poster for a regular customer. The very same moment a third customer is calling, but the editor is still unable to do two different things at the same time.
The editor hangs up the phone and gets back to the designer. It appears none of the photos sent by the customer is suitable for print, but the editor doesn’t believe it until he asks the designer three times about it. Hope dies last. Eventually he calls the customer and leaves a message, and the designer sets the page with the pictures they got to replace them with better ones as soon as the customer sends them.
The customer sends an email informing the editor he has no other photos, and the editor forwards the email to the graphic designer, because he fears to tell him that in the face.
A risque word can be heard from the designer’s room, to which the editor hastily replies that he’s got an idea for making the brochure without photos, wondering nervously at the same time if he is able to expand the text on turbines, which he has no knowledge about whatsoever, and then he recalls one of his friends has a brother who is a lecturer at a technical university. The friend, emotionally blackmailed, agrees to ask the brother for help, who also happens to have some graphics that can be used as illustration for the article.
The second customer calls to ask about the poster and when he would get it for acceptance. The editor merrily answers that we’re just finishing it, and then grabs the designer and tells him to leave the very important project aside and make the poster.
The customer from the new very important project asks what is taking so long. In response to a tentative attempt to point to him, that he still didn’t provide any photos which prolongs the work, he is visibly astounded with the lack of creative and proactive attitude to the problem. Hearing that the agency has managed to get some illustrations from the technical university, he is happy to finish the conversation. The editor catches the colleague who is going to the grocer’s and asks him: “Buy me vanilla fromage, a banana and milk fudges!!!” And he goes back to reading the remaining emails.
The poster customer sends an email saying he’s leaving and won’t be back for the rest of the day, so he asks for the poster to be ready tomorrow…
The editor quickly asks the designer to stop doing the poster and to go back to the new important project he was doing earlier. The designer grinds his teeth, and the editor finally has a moment to edit the texts waiting for him in emails since morning. It turns out both texts have a strange format which a Mac is unable to open, and the author won’t be able to send them with a different extension after 6 p.m.! The editor asks everybody in the agency if they have a PC laptop, luckily one of the editors has a customer’s company laptop (to be able to work with the customer online) and he manages to open the files.
The very important project customer receives the project to accept it, he calls to give remarks, but the very same moment he remembers about a videoconference with his company headquarters, so he just manages to say: I will think about it and will let you know – and then turns of his phone till 5 p.m., when he says that the main office has changed the concept so the project was dropped.
Emails start coming from other customers who have ordered Christmas cards – having read 17 of them the editor starts seeing stars, reindeers and Santa Clauses in front of his eyes. Having dealt with all the corrections, he suddenly realizes that it’s December already – just imagine – and the agency still hasn’t designed it’s own Christmas cards. The shoemaker’s children always go barefoot – the boss doesn’t find the phrase funny at all, so she calls a meeting with the entire team to quickly and very creatively propose an original phrase that would say Merry Christmas, but with different words.
Eventually he can get down to that editing, which should have been done by 2 p.m.…