Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Behind the Scenes with Emily

Good Morning & Happy Wednesday! Hope your day's going well. The topic of today's "Behind the Scenes" blog is Emily Eddington!

Behind the Scenes with Emily 
We do a wide range of live interviews on the morning show!
On this day, it was Superman!
Emily has been at WSIL for 4.5 years, and has been on the morning show for 2.5 years.

  • Describe your daily routine as part of the morning show crew...
As a morning show anchor, my daily routine starts EARLY. I have a bit more work to do on myself than Kevin & Clint, so I roll out of bed at 1:30 a.m. to get the process moving. We don't have makeup artists, hairstylists, or wardrobe experts here, so all of that work is up to us. I try to pick out my outfit and accessories the night before, and then in the morning I do my hair and makeup, and then get dressed. Sometimes anchors save their makeup & hair until right before the newscast, but I always fear that we may have breaking news, or it takes longer to get through scripts than normal... so I want to be pretty much ready, so all I need to do before the newscast is a few touch-ups.

Once I'm at the station, I read through the scripts that our producer Weston has written, and try to browse the news wires to find anything extra that can be added. Kevin and I will also write teases, and prepare for live interviews... and write anything else that's needed. My goal when writing/reading over scripts is to make them as conversational and easy to read as possible. There will always be stumbles on the air, but my goal is to lessen the chances, by altering the scripts to the way I naturally speak. Once the morning show is finished, I also anchor a couple of the cut-ins, and Kevin or I will record a promo for the next day. For the remainder of my shift, I'll either do a story for that day's evening newscast, shoot or write an Unsung Hero story, or just work on things for the next day's show.
  • What's the most stressful part about your job?
It's not usually a big issue, but sometimes we'll run short on time and be hustling to read and write scripts before the show. It always gets done though, with a few minutes left to look in the mirror and make sure there's no lipstick on my teeth, cat hair on my jacket, etc. Some people might find breaking news during the show stressful, but between Kevin, myself, and Weston our producer- it comes off very smooth. I think Kevin and I actually enjoy being able to go off the cuff with some new "This Just In" type of information. We like to ad-lib and Weston is great about communicating with us from the control room so we know what's happening, and what changes are being made to the show. I think to be a good anchor you have to have confidence-- and that comes from the people around you. I have so much respect for all of the morning crew members... the hours are crazy but everyone manages to come with a good attitude.
  • What's the most fun?
The people I work with on the show are a blast. The morning show definitely has a different tone from any other newscast. We're getting people ready to start their day... so we want to get the information out there quickly, but have fun in the process and wake people up! Commercial breaks are always good moments to recover from a laugh attack that may have been brewing during the previous block of news. Whether it's Ross or Evie or Josue on the floor-- I'm grateful for the way they keep us so upbeat! I try to keep in mind that if I'm not having fun doing the show, people probably aren't having fun watching it. As a kid I would sort of mock news anchors with their stiff presence and lecturing tone of voice... so I try to just be myself and act natural. It's harder than it sounds when you're on live TV in front of thousands!

On a day when Aaron, Ross, and Emily were all wearing different styles of red News 3 shirts, a modeling snapshot was in order.

  • What's something viewers might be surprised to learn about the morning show?
Something I hear from visitors or first time guests is that they're surprised at how laid back we are! We are continuously joking around and often times we're chatting right up until the moment we come back from a commercial break. Viewers would also be surprised to learn just how funny and goofy Kevin is. I think they get a taste of that from time to time on the news, but he has a great sense of humor and has us all laughing our heads off on a regular basis. Also, viewers might not realize that our crew is really like a family. We get along during our shift, but we honestly care about each other. You build sort of a bond with people who have to roll into work at 3:30 a.m. It's something nobody else can truly understand until they do it daily.
  • When did you first become interested in TV news?
When I was in elementary school, it was just part of my morning routine to watch the news. My parents always had it on, so I'd sit and watch it for awhile. I remember being fascinated- not so much by the stories- but by the anchors, and the whole production. My mom recently reminded me of a journal entry I was assigned to write in 3rd grade about who I wanted to trade places with for a day. I named a local news anchor... it was actually the elderly man that delivered the farm & market reports...hmmm... It was hilarious to hear mom read that to me again. Anyway, I always liked the news but for quite some time, I was very intimidated by what they had to do. As a kid, I remember thinking... I could NEVER memorize all that information! Someone enlightened me about the concept of the teleprompter.

I wasn't fully convinced that news was what I wanted to do until college, when I did some work for the campus TV station, and ended up getting an internship at a local TV station. I grew up watching KHQA in Quincy, Illinois, and one summer as an intern- I was reporting stories. I have never learned so much as I did that summer. Not only did it improve my writing, but just my independence, and ability to go out and gather news on my own. I gained a lot of confidence, and will be forever grateful to the people of KHQA for teaching me SO MUCH.

There are still more Behind the Scenes blog posts to come!
We're on the air weekdays from 5:30 to 7:00 a.m. in HD...
You can also join the conversation on Cover it Live during the news!


  1. Emily is the best. I'm so glad she joined the morning show 2 1/2 years ago. Such an awesome person to be around.

  2. Great post! Emily is my sister, and I'm so proud of the hard work she does everyday. I can tell you that the young woman you see on the news is exactly like that in real life, too: funny, engaging, warm, beautiful, and very smart. Thanks to all at WSIL who have encouraged her, especially Kevin.

  3. Emily is an amazing person! I love watching her on the news. A great news anchor!