Producer's Diary - September 2010
It's great to be replaced in our Saturday night slot by my all-time favourite cooking author, who's making her first-ever TV series - it's well overdue, in my view.
We have four of Annabel Langbein's recipe books in our kitchen - they're all in a terrible state, covered in stains, with torn pages and marked all over with scribbled notes, because we use them so much.
So even though Country Calendar is off air, I'm still watching TV ONE on Saturday nights at 7pm with rapt attention.
Sadly the Country Calendar team can't sit back too long luxuriating in other people's TV shows - we're on a mission. We've recently received funding from NZ On Air to make 26 new episodes for next year and we're raring to go.
We're just awaiting the formal sign-off from our long-term sponsor, the National Bank, which also contributes a significant amount to our budget - and as soon as we've got their final agreement, we'll be stumping up and down the country looking at story ideas.
We've got a big list of promising-looking stories to look at. We've found out as much as we can about them by phone - and the next stage is for our directors to take a look for themselves.
I hope that by the end of September, we'll have decided on at least some of our 2011 stories and we'll be starting to film in October.
Every stage of the Country Calendar production cycle is exciting and challenging - and choosing our stories is especially so. But we're confident that we're on the right track, and that we'll have some great yarns for your viewing in the new year.