I live in California. Pacific Time Zone. 3 hours later than many of my agents and clients. 9 or so hours different from several other agents and clients scattered across Europe.
This means that my operating hours are not 9-5 Pacific time. They are 9 AM to 9 AM anytime. Over, the years, as more of my clients are in far flung parts of the globe, I find that I do a lot of work very early in the morning. I get up fairly early anyway, but more and more it seems as though I must be “in voice” for a 7 AM session.
Just part of the customer service.
It used to be – when I was working in the local studios, I could ask my agent to arrange for sessions between 10 and 2 so that I didn’t have to mess with the traffic. This usually worked. Not for any on-camera work – that starts at the crack of dawn and goes to last light, but on the voiceover side – it seemed as though we could make the sessions work around our particular rush hour phobias.
Oh, there was the occasional “emergency voiceover job,” but that was more on the “can you get over here in 15 minutes” calls that merely interrupted your lunch, not your REM sleep. (Although I do remember a phone call late at night asking me to pack everything in my closet and come to a set to do an emergency on-camera shoot when two talents were felled by the flu in the course of trying to get the first shot. We shot all night.)
But today, the phone rings at around 6 AM on a regular basis as my agents or clients get into their offices and realize that they need to have a script read. Just part of the global aspect of our business.
Should I stick to strict office hours? I don’t think so, I have plenty of time – most of the time – to take time off during the middle of the day – to get out with the dog – to go to the park – to have lunch with friends. I don’t mind working weekends either. Unless I am in the middle of an audiobook, I don’t spend long hours actually in the studio recording. A quick job here and there actually makes me happy, not irritated that my weekend has been interrupted. Of course, I don’t have a significant other tapping their toes outside the studio door. I suppose if I did, I might have a slightly different attitude about the time I spend working.