Tips for Writers

The Art of Interviewing

Artful interviewing is the key to successfully crafting an article.

I have conducted hundreds of interviews over the years–in-person or by telephone–with ordinary folks, government types, public officials and celebrities.

Since most of these people have busy schedules and little time to waste, it is imperative that you make sure the time you spend with them is well-planned.

Do lots of research on the topic so your questions demonstrate that you have, at least, a minimal knowledge of the subject or topic.

For example, if you are interviewing a celebrity about their career, you should have totally researched their successes, failures, and life stories, so you can get beyond questions of fact to more substantive issue such as why they made certain choices or how these choices affected their lives.

Also, make sure that you record the interview and take notes. The recorder captures everything; your notes capture what is significant.

Your goal is to discover something new, something real, something provocative, or something moving that will engage your reader.

Readers want to read about celebrities and others who have experienced or overcome the universal problems of  life–loss, disappointment, self-doubt, failure, or deprivation.

Whether a celebrity or ordinary folk, we are all travelers on the journey of of life.

Help your readers connect with your interview subjects and your mission will be accomplished.

 

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