Brittany – Life of Edith “Spud” Bilson

This multimedia package about Edith “Spud” Bilson, started off a bit uneasy from the beginning. It started off stressful with not have everybody on the same page, having interviews and story ideas thrown out the door, feeling like we were getting nowhere quickly and we would have group meetings and group emails that seemed to lead us down an even more confused and frustrated path.

Finally, like the sun shining through the dark clouds, Ashley remembered meeting an interesting lady during a story the previous semester. She explained the lady, “Spud,” she had met and described her immediate appeal and captivating personality and stories. We all agreed that she sounded intriguing and out of the ordinary deciding to pursue the story of this 95 year old woman.

Once we all became familiar with her becoming impressed by her every story and all her advice, we struggled to find a common ground between her stories. Her stories were all interesting and we could see the depth and involvement of them but to break it down into less than five minutes they were each irrelevant. “Spud” was one of the top 100  interesting people in Morgantown and she definitely proved to us why.

Once we put everything together with each person in the group’s opinion and perspective of her the story became something none of us had planned. We found ways to capture the crazy stories and sense of humor, as well as the hard times she had been through in her life. To pull together all of complexity was what we all wanted and it became something we all had hoped… enlightening, inspiring, and touching.

She was an amazing lady to get to know, she was funny, inspiring, and the stories that she told were almost unimaginable but also had a familiarity about them. No matter how sad or crazy the story, she laughed in the end and said “God has a plan for us all.” Every time we were interviewing her she wanted to get up and go work on something else but then would find herself caught up in another 10 stories.

Everyone came together to do their part, offering their best side and in the end it was a learning experience for us all. I learned and was very impressed by the print aspect, they gave me a different perspective on reporting and interviewing. Also working with others in TVJ I learned other strategies as well as better editing techniques. We all learned how to drop one idea and frame of mine and quickly move onto another.

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