Meet the staff: Tyler Eschberger
For Middlesboro Daily News reporter Tyler Eschberger, journalism wasn’t a first option when it came to a career path. The Lincoln Memorial University graduate studied media communications while in college with hopes of working in film production in some capacity.
But when a job opening was posted early last year, Eschberger took notice and decided to give it a shot.
“I always had an interest and respect for journalism,” said Eschberger. “I just noticed that this job was open, and I applied. As a novice, I landed it and it’s been a roller coaster ever since.”
Eschberger officially became a member of the team in April 2017, and while his main goal after leaving LMU was to work in film production, he realized that journalism and producing a film isn’t much different at its core.
“Being a reporter and writing news articles, I consider it an art form. Some people might balk at that,” said Eschberger. “I think a newspaper is an art form. You have to know how to convey a story. You have to tell a story. It has to get the key facts correct, and they have to be understandable.
“They have to grab somebody’s attention — much like a book or a film has to do. It has to be satisfying. Writing and laying out a newspaper is in itself an art form — just like shooting a movie or writing a novel or painting a painting.”
While Eschberger thinks of himself as a novice, he has proven work as a blogger. With his love of movies — his favorite being Jaws — the Daily News reporter keeps a personal blog where he writes about films and entertainment.
With that said, he also admits that early on he was “kind of thrown into the fire” when he first started.
“Learning the ropes of a community, trying to cultivate resources and knowing how to properly structure a news article…it was a day-to-day thing. Sometimes it got overwhelming, but I think I’ve adapted over the year,” said Eschberger. “I think my skills as a news writer have improved. It’s been fun being the guy that goes out and gets to know people in the community and speak for the community.”
A native of Deerfield Beach, Florida, Eschberger said one of his favorite things about being a reporter is the reaction he receives from the community.
“In anything I do, I don’t expect pats on the back or congratulations. The only thing I want to do is do my job and do it well, but when I get positive feedback from the community it reminds me that people out there are reading my work,” said Eschberger. “It feels nice that people appreciate what you do.”
Even though the LMU grad has been with the paper over a year, one of his favorite projects remains a series that he wrote early in his journalism career. The series revolved around people from the community who had overcome addiction.
“Getting in contact with those people and sitting down with all of them…I wasn’t quite ready to have people bare their soul about the darkest period of their life,” said Eschberger. “It was a little daunting at first. When I would do it and learn their stories, they were just so willing to share.
“They trusted me to get their stories right and represent them properly. It was just eye opening and really rewarding.”
Reach Anthony Cloud at 606-302-9090 or on Twitter @AnthonyCloudMDN