In the first post in this series, I discussed how I prepared for an on-site reporting and same-day summary-preparation job at a day-long conference in downtown DC. In the second post, I covered the my activities on the day of the conference itself. In this final post, I’ll discuss the tools and techniques that I use to turn my notes and recordings into a polished final product for the client.
Now the meeting is over, you’ve saved and backed up your files, and you’re back at the office ready to write up the summary, transcription, or minutes. Where do you start?
We’ll begin by looking at ways to clean up your notes. They are the core around which you create the final product. Then we’ll move on to tips for working with your text and audio files.
After completing those steps, you will have a product that looks and reads great! So let’s get started…
Continue reading “Tools and Tips for Rapid Transcription, Part 3”
In my previous post, I discussed how I prepared for an on-site reporting and same-day summary-preparation job at a day-long conference in downtown DC. I covered note-taking tools, audio recording tools, and such easily-overlooked aspects like advance work, a suitable typing and recording surface, and suitable cables.
In this post, I’ll continue by discussing my experiences on the day of the conference itself. Just FYI, this will be the shortest of the three posts. Because it builds on the work done in advance of the event and it prepares you for the work to be done after the event, there isn’t as much to cover. But its length isn’t a reflection of its importance; it is the center of the whole effort.
Before the day of the event, be sure to take the time to map and time the route and the parking, unless you have done the trip before — and even then, it’s probably worth double-checking for peace of mind. Before leaving, check in with your favorite traffic-monitoring app to see if there are any road closures, accidents, or other obstacles that could delay you. All of this may seem like overcaution, but remember: as a freelancer, you are always representing your business to your clients. Courtesies like punctuality convey your professionalism. They’re hiring you to solve their problems, not to hear about yours.
So now you’ve arrived at the meeting site. If you’ve followed the tips in my previous post, you’ve already scoped out the room and know where you’re going to set up. Let’s get started!
Continue reading “Tools and Tips for Rapid Transcription, Part 2”
A client recently asked me to provide on-site reporting and same-day summary preparation services for a day-long conference in downtown DC. The job provided me with an excellent opportunity to try out a combination of various tools and techniques — some new, some old — that I had used separately for individual projects, but until then had not used together.
All the pieces worked and played well together, and I was so pleased with the results that I wanted to share them with other writers who are, like me, always looking for ways to improve their writing and editing techniques in the field. Over the course of three brief posts I’ll be summarizing my experiences before, during, and after the conference.
Before the Conference
Although for on-site reporting projects I have generally preferred to use my laptop (a late-2013 MacBook Pro) for taking notes and recording, for this trip I wanted to travel light because I knew I would be taking the Metro and walking a lot. That meant using my trusty iPad and its Logitech Ultrathin keyboard cover. Here’s how I got my iPad ready:
Continue reading “Tools and Tips for Rapid Transcription, Part 1”