I’ve been struggling lately with a new schedule and the reality that my early mornings spent drinking coffee and running through the trails near Cardigan are coming to a close. I knew it would be a tough year, but waking at 3 so I can drive Camren to early morning training has worsened my cognitive decline due to lack of sleep. All this also means that I have found myself way behind schedule.
I was sitting at my desk with a story due 3 hours later on Tuesday afternoon. I didn’t have time to continue a series I had started, and I was stuck trying to come up with anything else. So, I relented and opened ChatGPT.
I subscribe to ChatGPT, and it has saved me from having to pay someone to do research or spend an hour on Google so I can write one sentence based on fact. It’s pretty good at giving me ideas for AD copy, too.
If someone asked me, and I realize no one would, what are you good at, I would say, nothing really. I might add I am empathetic and have some creativity (like we all do).
I entered into ChatGPT a long prompt asking for story ideas, and it returned a list that was so complete I didn’t feel qualified to write them. I asked for something simpler, and it delivered again. It’s more creative than I am.
Defeated, I went and prepared dinner.
I’ve already been replaced.
It was great to connect again with Guy, and meet Yan Yan and Jing when they visited from Brooklyn this week. Guy and I went to Grad school together in Taiwan and haven’t really been in touch, with the exception of one social or another, since.
I sometimes think there are ghosts that inhabit the space between receiving an email and entering that data in a Google Spreadsheet: there are so many errors and missing info. Not a week goes by without a mistake.
One of the popular features of Sleep Tight Stories is the weekly shoutouts and birthday wishes to kids from all over the world. Kids love hearing their names on the show, and many more find it interesting to hear where other kids are listening from. We do this once a week, and often, there will be 20 or more messages to go through. You must be a supporter to get mentioned, but we seldom turn anyone down. A few other podcasts put a $50 US price tag on these, but that seems too aggressive for our tastes.
The process is entirely manual. Parents sign up for premium or send a donation, then reach out via email, and I reply telling them when the shoutout will appear. The data is then entered into a Google spreadsheet. It’s laborious, and I have struggled with all the emails this summer as my focus has been spending as much of my mornings outdoors as possible.
I should automate, but setting up a secure form is a pain, and then we lose this opportunity to ask questions and hear feedback. If we continue to grow, this will be unsustainable, so I hope a solution will present itself in the coming months.