As a senior editor at Red Arrow, what does a normal day for you look like?
It’s not often that I walk into work and start a new project, I’m almost always picking something up where I left off the day before. Which means coming up with solutions to yesterday’s problems. I honestly do some of my best thinking/problem solving while showering before work (too much information?), so I’ll normally come in ready to tackle whatever it is that was stumping me.
But a more direct answer is that I’ll normally check in with Brian, our post production supervisor, to make sure I’m still up to date with our current projects and due dates and start to prioritize my edits. More often than not, I’m juggling 2,3,4+ videos at a time, with different versions of cuts due to different people at different times, so once I get a clear picture of what has the highest priority, I just shut my door and jump in.
What got you interested in the TV biz?
Hmmm, I think one of the first things I wanted to be when growing up was an actor. I was in a bunch of school plays from elementary school to junior high. As I was transitioning to high school, I started to lose interest in acting because I really didn’t feel like I had much control of the overall product, just my portion of it. But I still loved visual storytelling.
My high school had a TV/Radio station (WNAS New Albany!) and I was able to somehow talk my way into being allowed to take TV/Radio classes a year earlier than normal. Everyone loved the radio side of the school – being able to DJ on nights and weekends from age 15-18 was pretty amazing – but no one else really cared much about the TV side. We ended up getting some new iMacs that had iMovie, and I was really the only one interested in working with video. I had some friends who were pretty good writers and I ended up shooting and editing a project with them.
After that, I saved up all year and bought a Power Mac G5, another friend saved up and bought a camera, and we started shooting ‘movies’ over the next few summers. I knew I wanted to do SOMETHING in this field moving forward.
When did you know you wanted to become an editor?
I went to WKU wanting to be an editor. It was something I had experience doing and didn’t feel like I was horrible at it. Thankfully at Western (and WKYU-PBS), they teach you EVERYTHING, so being able to get a taste of every aspect of production really had me wondering what it was that I actually wanted to do. But in the end, I was hired to be an editor more than anything else, and it’s what I continue to do today.
How did you get your start at Red Arrow?
While at WKU, I was told by a teacher, “It’s not what you learn here, it’s who you meet while learning it. The people in this room might be helping you get a job one day.” SO TRUE. Tony, our senior online editor, was actually my boss at WKYU-PBS in Bowling Green before he was brought on at RAI, and I had been very good friends (as well as classmates and co-workers) with Jessica Comer, who used to be supervising editor here at Red Arrow. I got my foot in the door purely on their word, and I couldn’t be more grateful.
What do you enjoy most about working here at Red Arrow?
Obviously, the people I’ve met. Everyone is so talented and outright funny. It really is a pleasure to work with every person in this building. And as I’ve now transitioned into one of the ‘older’ employees, it’s also been enjoyable seeing the newer and younger employees come into their own and completely kick ass.
I also really love the variety of work we do. I never feel like I’m working on the same thing for too long. Just as am getting tired of something, we’re on to the next project that is so different than the last.
What are some of the most challenging aspects of being an Editor?
Letting go. Realizing that no matter how much you try to steer a project/edit one way, sometimes the client just wants what they want. And even if you think it’s wrong and horrible, it’s just a job. Get it done and move on.
What’s been your favorite/most unusual/hardest project and why?
I think the You Can’t Turn That Into a House pilot might be one of my favorite things I’ve worked on. It was my first time really taking the reins of something and feeling like I had a lot of trust and support behind me. I really loved the whole process, and honestly it energized me as an editor.
What’s some advice you wish someone would’ve given you at the beginning of your editing career?
You’re not as smart as you think you are, your first edit isn’t perfect, and you’ve still got a lot to learn; so shut up and start taking notes.
You’re known for winning about every office competition we’ve ever devised. Tell us about your most memorable competition/victory. Do you have any insider tricks you’d like to share?
Hah! You know, I did start strong but have gotten very good at losing lately. Hold your cards close to your chest! I feel like I’m pretty unassuming, so originally no one took me seriously in competitions. Now everyone is gunning for me and my gig is up! But I cherish all of my wins equally.