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“The one thing that I do that really helps me is to make sure that I’m there 1/2 an hour early (especially if it’s someplace I’ve never been before). I know Atkinson-Baker wants me there 15 minutes early, but this gives me time to relax, locate the bathroom and settle in after getting out of traffic.
“As far as managing jobs, I keep all my hold notes in a separate labeled box so records are easy to manage.I have a 12-column book of all my jobs ongoing. The columns listed are: what happened to the transcript, date, case name, job number, witness name, date ordered, date due, date sent, actual pages, via (meaning shipping) and an archive column where I then write down the disk number.
“I have a form holder (like a basket stack) that holds a ream of paper. I put all my jobs in that and in order so I can work the stack from top to bottom (Expedites are flagged with a post-it note). With all my materials in one place and in sequence, it’s much easier to manage several jobs.
“I know attorneys sometimes want a secretary and CR in one package. So, if you carry a tiny stapler, baggy with paperclips, page flags and highlighters, then when the exhibits start flying around the room, you can clip them together!
“When all is said and done, it really helps having an understanding significant other and children. Especially after working on an all-day depo!
“Everybody should try to have a day for themselves. I enrolled in a photography class with my grandson and tap classes with my 3-year old granddaughter. So if I have to tell J.R. no, then I suppose I have to. It’s just an hour a day that I really need for me.
“TIP: Don’t burst out laughing when you have a real blooper in RealTime, especially when they want to stop and query it!
“Last of all, get one of those little stress balls with the faces on them and eyes that pop out. Of course, only use them before and after the depo! In other words, develop a good sense of humor!” ~ Mary Ellen
“I’m sure all reporters strive for this, but when I write during the day, I write everything as perfectly as I can so that it’ll translate precisely on my computer. I have fun figuring out new prefixes and suffixes. Probably everybody does this but it’s the most important way to build a transcript quickly.
“As far as a stress killer, I go ice-skating in the morning. I can be totally stressed out and worried but when I get on the ice the stress just melts completely.” ~ Aileen
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