Access ABC: Ali Moore has swapped late nights for early mornings, TV for radio and Sydney for Melbourne to take on her latest challenge: covering Jon Faine's Morning program on 774 ABC Melbourne for the rest of the year.
Now six weeks into her Mornings gig, Ali is starting to relax.
(Perhaps not quite as relaxed as long-time presenter Jon Faine, who's currently undertaking a road trip of a lifetime to London with his son.)

After 20 years of reporting mostly hard-core news and current affairs - the last 10 covering business - Ali's been making the transition to the pace of morning radio from her regular role as host of Lateline Business.

She says it's an enormous challenge, but one she's relishing.

"It's the sheer range and breadth of topics we cover - I do on average between 14 and 16 interviews a morning," Ali said. That's in contrast to Lateline Business or the 7.30 Report (she's a regular fill-in host), where Ali spends most of the day preparing for one, or sometimes two, interviews.

"It's a very different, fast moving set-up (in radio). We're a small team so we all hunker down and get on with it - it's not like we've got researchers," she laughed.

Ali has filled in before for a week or two, but her approach this time is different, given the length of her stint.

"I need to keep remembering the key is to create a relaxed atmosphere. I'm in people's lounge rooms and in their cars. I'm really enjoying the talkback side and feeling like I get to dip in and out of conversations across the morning."

Another highlight is the Conversation Hour slot from 11am (broadcast across Victoria). "I love that point in the program where you can take a deep breath, knowing you're going to have the luxury of time to talk to some really interesting people."

She said the trickiest bit is "to put more of me into it. I've been in this game for over 20 years and the aim has always been that I'm not the story. I think that's a big challenge as well - to learn to be a bit more me rather than the news and current affairs face."

In some ways Ali has come full circle. She began her career as a cadet at 3LO and after six years with radio news and current affairs, she went north to Beijing in 1992 as the ABC's China correspondent.

She then moved to Channel Nine where she spent a decade as a business reporter and host of Business Sunday. In 2006 she returned to the ABC to present Lateline Business.

So has she found it liberating to step out of the business arena for a few months?

"Definitely. One of the most enjoying parts of this role is being able to get away from straight business and to mix things up. That said, the great irony is for me as a fill-in presenter is that the team can throw me any business story and I'm not fussed, but throw me a sports story and I do get fussed," she joked.

A brave admission perhaps to make in sports-mad Melbourne, but then Ali can always play her home-town advantage.

"I'm often asked why I do radio in Melbourne when I live in Sydney. That answer is actually really easy for me: it's because I grew up in Melbourne, and it's home."

Despite living in Sydney for the last decade or so Ali doesn't think she could do the same role there. "I feel much more comfortable here - Melbourne is a place I get."