Almost my entire career has been in "reality" television. I started in news, transitioned into documentaries and then everything seemed to morph into reality tv - which is SO far removed from reality, it isn't even funny.
There are very few shows on tv that truly capture reality. The majority are manufactured storylines with re-takes and sound bites that are written out for "talent". I cannot begin to tell you how exhausting this process has become. How exhausting it is to sit in a room with people half your age telling you what makes for good story and then send you out in the field in order to "capture the drama". How did I get to the point where it is 2am, I'm filming in a strip club in Vegas and I have one of my "talent" SCREAMING at me, with her finger an inch from my face, "who the fuck do you think you are making him out to be the bad guy? We didn't agree to this shit!". Well, actually, you did, because it was your idea, but hey, let me diffuse this situation as soon as I get the stripper to stop puking and the bride and groom clothed.
Oh yeah, and is everyone up on their tetanus shots? I'm not sure if that is rust on the walls or what. I almost quit right then and there, but waited until the shoot was over, we got back to LA and then when the owner of the company also screamed at me "who the fuck do you think you are coming up with show ideas when I have a fucking development department?!" - all said with clenched fists - I knew I was done. Done with train wreck tv. I. Just. Can't. But what I found that I could do for my own sanity was write. And I wrote a thriller/horror screenplay.
Not many female horror writers and I loved the process and I loved how it turned out. Family and friends who read it couldn't believe that "this sweet person" could write blood and guts. It might not be everyone's cup of tea, but then, I can't do musicals. And while it took me a few months to write my screenplay, I did it. And I'm re-inventing myself, giving myself a second act. One that isn't screaming, finger pointing and a shit show. And I'm almost there. Almost out of the dark zone and into a true reality. One that I am creating. Almost. And I'm over the moon excited to see where this next chapter takes me.