Scared to stop

How a temporary, stop-gap career switch became an all-consuming passion that I just can’t quit.

Mark Anthony

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Image created by the author using Adobe Firefly AI.

At 10am on Monday 23 February 2021, I looked into a camera and said: “Good morning and welcome to The Break Fast Show.” It was the first episode of my new LiveStream show and the first time I ever uttered those words.

I had hosted live shows for almost a year by then. LiveStreaming had been my primary means of news delivery since I had returned from a Las Vegas exhibition in March the previous year and found that I was no longer able to produce my magazine due to COVID-19. But I had broadcast inconsistently.

On 23 February 2021, I went all in.

At the time I broadcast show number one, my YouTube Channel had 1,247 subscribers. When I broadcast show number 618 yesterday, that same YouTube channel had 98,894 subscribers. We have broadcast more than 450 hours of LiveStream content during that time. The channel has been viewed more than 93 million times. Viewers have watched our content for an astonishing 508,000 hours. And the audience, the subscriber list and the views continue to grow each and every day.

All of which sounds very exciting; and it is. But there’s a problem. I am scared to stop.

The Break Fast Show began without a plan and without an audience. It began without any real expectation or ambition.

It was born of frustration at not being able to travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And it was born out of a desperate need to continue to ply my trade as a journalist, even though my magazine could not be published during the lockdown.

All of that frustration and desperation is visible in the first 100 or more shows. The camera was terrible; and my delivery was worse. The lighting was virtually non-existent. Then again, so was the audience.

By the time the pilot episode ended, we had seen less than 30 people tuning in. And I know that my wife, my son and my mother were among those that did.

But it grew, even though it has never been advertised or promoted. Each new viewer arrived either by accident or through word of mouth.

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Mark Anthony

Mark is a journalist, author, podcaster and daily live-streamer specialising in the field of demolition and construction.