The Art of Interviewing

Teagan Ortense

Art is not only painting on a canvas, or drawing on a piece of paper; art is the beauty of something as simple as words on a paper, or an inside look at someone.

Interviewing is something that at first can be a tad difficult, especially if you are shy. Once you ask your first question, everything flows off your tongue like water flowing down a river. Interviewing is getting to know someone better than you thought.

The first tip of interviewing is make sure you ask questions people would want to know about a person. Simple questions include: “What is your full name?” “How old are you?” “What do you do for living and can you tell me a little about it?” Asking basic questions is the best way to get the conversation rolling.

Once the ice is broken, the conversation flows easily. People love talking about themselves, especially to someone who wants to hear what they have to say. This is when you have to remember to keep your pen or keyboard constantly going, writing all the little things that roll off their tongue, in case you need little details to add into your story later on.

Depending on the purpose of the interview, make sure that you are asking important questions. The responses to these more important questions will dictate how you will structure your story.

Also, make sure you keep it light, have a sense of humor, and let the interviewee know a little about yourself. It is ok to treat the interview like a conversation, rather than an interrogation. You want to make the interviewee feel comfortable with you, and make her feel like she can connect with you and talk to you. Just make sure to be yourself.

By the time you are done interviewing, you have gotten to know a person for who she really is. The beauty behind the interview is that it dissolves all misconceptions you had about this person. If they were someone you previously knew, you now know them more intimately. Interviewing can also be very

beneficial to you, it can lead you to new opportunities, as well as expanding your connections with others.

Last, but not least, make sure that when your story is complete, you let your interviewee know the story is published and you would be more than happy to send her a copy of the article. Not only will she be happy to read it, but if you ever need her in the future, she will welcome you with open arms.