Story development is key to a successful show!
The morning meeting is very important. It's important to get ideas on the board, and get to work fast. Today we had a lot of important stories that developed throughout the day. For example, we had the woman in South Los Angeles who was taken into custody for alleged child abuse, which resulted in the death of her one-year old daughter. When the story first broke in the morning I was unsure if we should send someone, but decided it was very local and involved kids.
As the day went on new details kept being released. Neighbors came forward about the family, police said that the husband had seen his wife attempting to drown their children and then her mental status was an issue. We also had to keep up with the health status of her 5-year-old daughter who was in critical condition. Although it's a lot to incorporate in the story all elements are important and necessary. Since we go on air at 6 p.m. making sure you have the latest updates, videos and reaction is key.
We had other small stories that we had to update throughout the day like the Honduras prison fires, Whitney Houston and Fresh and Easy. What makes a story successful is getting both sides on an issue, getting important details, having the most updated information first and having compelling video (if applicable). Since we are broadcasting at 6 p.m. we have to make sure we have the most recent news. This is why checking wire updates throughout the day and during the newscast is so important.
As far as having stories come to life, it's harder than I thought. In order for a story to come to life it's important to have video, but not just any video. Each story is different some have interesting, engaging video/b-roll while others don't. Although they might not have good b-roll, they might have an amazing sound bite that captures the story. To bring a story to life you have to work with what you have. Also, when it comes to longer stories in order to bring it to life you can add a full screen which breaks down a complicated issue. You can also break off stories into two parts, so that it's easier for the viewers to follow.
Story ideas need some type of development, a factor that makes people care about what is going on. Today, I was lead producer and I learned a lot of valuable lessons. For starters I learned that I need to manage my MJ's more wisely, be more organized with my time, make sure that I not only have people filming out in the field, but have help in the newsroom.
So what is the moral of this hectic day? Don't bite off more than you can chew. Regardless, I did learn the importance of story development, and I'm happy and proud that we pulled off a great newscast, so thank you team Wednesday!!! Until next time peace, love and happiness.