We asked a few of the members who served on the NCRA TRAIN committee what their greatest realtime fears are. This is what they had to say:


“My fear of realtime is having others not only see my writing but see that my output is not always perfect. I have to remind myself that the great writers in the world weren’t always great, and just like them, we all have to start somewhere.”
Merilee Johnson, RMR, CRR, CRC



“My biggest fear of showing my realtime is missing words, having untranslates, and words translating wrong. I overcome this fear by analyzing my writing, learning from my mistakes, and building my dictionary.”
Linda C. Larson, RPR, CRI



“Currently my greatest fear with regard to realtime is getting to a realtime job only to have them request a specific type of realtime transfer that the setting firm was not aware of. I'm uneasy with the idea that (a) the attorney will know more than I do and request realtime in some way I don't know about or can't provide, or (b) the attorney won't know as much as I do, yet request something specific even though what I can offer is extremely comparable.”

“I'm learning that, just like with other attorney requests, attorneys can be fickle and you cannot always please them. We do the best we can, accept that we don't know absolutely everything and are not magicians, serve the attorney clients the best we can that day, and move on. With realtime comes growth, a learning curve, and plenty of mistakes.”
Michelle Kirkpatrick, RDR, CRR, CRC



“My biggest fear is having someone see my misstrokes, untranslates, and briefs I make up on the fly. I know what they mean, especially the briefs, but to them it just looks like the wrong word until I have time to edit and refresh. For example: They see dog, but I see oxidative degradation!"
Tammy August, RDR, CRR, CRC



“My biggest fear is that my judge will read back something incorrectly into the record because it's, of course, always in the midst of several objections and people talking over each other that she will look back at the realtime screen and read back a question or answer. If I was reading it back, I would feel much better – but that is something she always likes to do.”

“While it's a compliment to her trust in my abilities and writing, I have been striving to improve my speed and accuracy for just those special moments to ensure when it happens, my notes (and the record) will be ready for her.”
Cathy Busa, RPR



“My fear is that I will be unavoidably detained (stuck in a train or gridlocked traffic) and arrive late to a job and then unable to make a routine connection due to an intense panicked feeling that paralyzes my brain and results in setting up before a roomful of staring attorneys and breaking into a giant sweat! And the opportunity to input designations and names particular to the case has been a lost cause because the parties are ready to begin, and I'm writing untranslates instead of clean and impressive realtime. Moral of the fear, plan for the unplanned.”
Deb Levinson, RMR, CRR, CMRS, CRI



“I do it because I want to be a team player, but I HATE it when I am assigned to a judge in another county and I am asked to provide realtime for the proceedings, especially when that judge’s court reporter is our state’s reining realtime champion. Talk about pressure, and, of course, then I’m all thumbs!”
Mary Bader, RPR



“My fear of writing realtime to others is the mistakes that might come up. Most people don't understand what we do and find our job to be somewhat of a mystery. Some are in awe when we explain how we do our job. Writing realtime to others can show the flaws that never had to be seen and can cause a sense of fear and feeling of incompetence.”

“I'm learning that confidence is the key to writing realtime to others just as confidence was the key to reading my paper notes in open court. Going into the job with confidence and maintaining that confidence (even if errors pop up) helps to ease my fears.”
Felicia Coleman-Jordan, RPR



“I have a fear that the attorneys are going to want me to hook up to their laptop. I have been using StenoCast for so long, and it’s so easy, and I’ve got throw-down netbooks, so it’s a piece of cake. I have not hooked up an attorney’s computer for so long, but I know the last time (perhaps a year ago) when an attorney asked, I failed miserably. He was very disappointed, because, unlike most, he evidently knew how to utilize CaseView with annotations and the like, and he wouldn’t be able to do anything with my netbook but view the transcript.”

“I do find that most of the times when I offer to provide a netbook, they really like that idea, because it keeps their laptop free for other use.”



“The bottom line: when providing realtime, we all have a fear of not being perfect, which is obviously an impossible ideal. The best we can do is work towards improving, and the only way to do that is to correct our imperfections when they occur – like when I first started working in the courtroom setting rather than in depositions and Your Honor translated as urine. I changed the way I write urine so that will NEVER happen again.”
Kathy Silva, RPR, CRR