As most people in the Free World seem to know, I got my 30 (or, more likely 22) minutes of fame November 2nd on Jeopardy!.


Now that the show has aired, I can tell you all about it. Believe it or not, as part of a (lengthy) contract I signed, I could neither blog nor talk to the press about my experience until airtime. I get a lot of questions, and here are the answers:

1) How did you get on the show? First, I took an online test. Then, I heard nothing for about five months. But, eventually, I got an email telling me to come for a personal interview in NYC. It was early on a Sunday, so I rested up and arrived apprehensive but with a good night's sleep behind me. There, along with maybe 30 other people, you take a written test (it's like the SATs with people at long tables, hunched over their papers), play the game, and have an interview--all in front of everyone.

I had this moment of panic where I almost fled, but then I decided that everyone else was nervous, too. Then, after all that, I heard nothing until Esi came running into my office about a month later with a message that they'd called me.

2) Were the interview and test hard? In a word: yes.

3) Does it tape in NYC? It used to, and when I was a pre-teen my mom and I got tickets to see it at Rock Center--with host Art Fleming! But now it's taped in L.A. And you pay your way out there unless you win. In that case, they'll pay for you to return the next week, since they only tape at the beginning of the week.

4) What is Alex like? Alex is nice. But you hardly speak to him, except when you're taping. Since 5 shows are taped each day, he spends the time in between changing his suit! Then, he answers questions from the audience.

5) Were you nervous? I have to admit that I was not nervous. I was excited, but everyone had been so nice, and you get to hang out with the contestants before and between shows. So you quickly realize everyone is excited/nervous, too. Plus I knew I wasn't going to win...why??

6) Because I didn't master the signaling device. You get to practice in the morning before the taping and I knew I would never be fast enough to win. So, I decided to just have fun with it. My goal was to NOT be in the minus column, no matter what.

7) How does Alex know what to talk about at the beginning of the show? Before the show, you tell the contest coordinators all sorts of “fun” stories about yourself. Then, you end up admitting the goofiest things possible and that always seems to inevitably be what he chooses. Later, I decided there's a method to his choices--instead of making me squirm, I started laughing and it loosened me up.

8) How in the world did you know about the magazine THE RING? It's a long story, but believe me, if you went to Fordham University in the late 70s/early 80s you know about THE RING. It was a cult favorite magazine on campus.

9) Did you get all your money? No! I did not win $12,000! You get a cash consolation prize (basically covers your airfare and hotel), and then parting gifts, including a framed photo of you with Alex. The champ does keep his or her dough, however!

10) Are you glad you did it? You bet I am! I had the greatest time. It was fun from start to finish. You got to roam around the set (you do stand on boxes so you're all the same height!), get wired for sound, have professional make-up, eat breakfast in a Green Room, and pretty much be treated like a princess all day.

Everyone with the show was so nice and the other contestants were great. You heard it here, they need smart women to audition! It's not a bad thing to drop my name when they ask “Do you know anyone who appeared?”

[cell phone photos off of the television]

11 Comments:

Blogger Chantal said:

Very cool! I don't watch that show, but I'm glad you had a good time.

9:11 PM  

Blogger JennaPetersen said:

You look so pretty, Lucia! And you referenced Weird Al in the subject line (Now that song is caught in my head). I knew I liked you...

JennaP

10:18 AM  

Blogger Lyn said:

Hi Lucia,
I thought you did pretty good. For some reason, men seem to dominate though women do win and a woman just won the big championship.

I walk the treadmill every day during Jeopardy and was thrilled to see you.

I'm sure you don't remember me, but I met you at a New Orleans RWA conference several years ago. So for once, I got to say--I know that woman!!!

I'm writing for the new Avon Inspire now and keeping out of mischief.

Anyway, I thought you looked good and did yourself proud.
Lyn Cote

4:51 PM  

Anonymous diana.debartlo@harpercollins.com said:

Lucia, you are the best! All of us here at HC are so proud! You are a fun, fearless female with a high IQ.

DDD

5:14 PM  

Blogger Jane said:

I saw that episode, though I have to admit I didn't know who you were when Alex mentioned that you had something to do with romance novels. Did you have trouble with the buzzer?

7:36 PM  

Blogger Elizabeth Boyle said:

Lucia, the kids and I love Jeopardy and were thrilled to be cheering for you, though at one point the older of the two said, "She needs to answer more questions if she wants to win." Well, yeah. But it was great fun to see you there and I wish you had won!

3:29 PM  

Blogger Malle said:

Hey Lucia,

You rock! Getting on Jeopardy is so amazing -- and Elizabeth's child's analysis so dead on. Well done. Now I am going to have to surf around to find you digitally!

Malle

3:46 PM  

Blogger jule said:

Left another message but think it got lost in cyberspace. It said something like: You're great!!! I wish I'd known you were on, but missed the show that night. I always wanted to know of someone who got on! Your pictures look amazing. What fun!

Julianne/aka Jule McBride

7:28 PM  

Blogger Laura @ Laura Williams' Musings said:

You're braver than I would be.

Glad you had fun on the show!

9:15 AM  

Blogger rogger said:

Hi Lucia
i m sorry i missed that episode of Jeopardy TV Show.But you are looking gorgeous in this blog.It was a good idea to create a blog of your episode. I think you should post a video in this blog of that episode.

8:04 AM  

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