Known as ‘the people’s presenter’,journalist Melissa Doyle, 47, is usually the one asking the questions.
Here, Ruth McCarthy turns the tables on the anchor of Seven’s news and public affairs show Sunday Night for her side of the story.
You’ve been in the business for many years – which stories would you say are closest to your heart?
Melissa: I wouldn’t know where to start! Probably this year it was interviewing Brenda Lin [whose uncle murdered her mother, father, aunt and two little brothers whilst she was on an overseas excursion in 2009].
She’s a remarkable woman, and to meet somebody like her – who’s managed to find her way out of such tragedy and rebuild her life – is incredibly inspiring. I was so privileged to meet her.
On a personal level, how do you deal with such confronting interviews?
It’s hard but I don’t want to make a big thing about it because what others have been through by far surpasses anything. You cannot help but become emotionally involved though. You invest yourself into a relationship with the person you’re interviewing because it matters and it’s real.
Maybe I take things on board more than I should but I can’t help it; that’s who I am. I wear my heart on my sleeve.
You’re loved and trusted by the public – how does that make you feel?
I feel so incredibly honoured. But I’ve always been myself – I’ve never tried to fit into a particular mould. I’m just me. If anything, it makes me feel more of a responsibility and duty to viewers and [those] I interview because people trust me.
Give us an insight into your day.
Every day is so different. I don’t have set hours so the challenge is managing the ebb and flow of it. Luckily, my kids [Nick, 16, and Talia, 13] are a bit older and my family has always been used to me working so they’re fairly adaptable.
For example, I have some stories overseas coming up so I’ll be gone for a few weeks, but everyone at home will manage.
My husband John, 49, is fantastic and takes care of things – and I’ll do a bit of a cook-up before I go and stock the freezer with a few lasagnes.
You and John have been married for 21 years – what makes a long and happy relationship?
We were 23 and 25 when we met – I think we’ve watched each other grow and, luckily for us, we’ve grown in the same direction. We both support each other in what we do personally and professionally. Throughout the years there’s been periods where I’ve had my foot to the floor and John’s been able to do more at home, and then there’s been times where it’s been the other way around. We’ve always been able to work
Read the rest of the interview in the new edition of Yours, available at your newsagency now.