- Were you satisfied with the answers you got?
Yes! Toni was able to give me short, basic answers, but then elaborate on them for further detail only moments later. It provided a sense of flow that was easy to understand and take in, allowing me to see how her interests have shaped her stories.
- Did you stick to your approach (your plan)?
Yes! I stuck to broad, ‘generic’ questions to start with, going into what she’s writing before the how, the why and the goals. If anything, the questions I had laid out weren’t structured, delaying them for a few seconds as I figured out what came next.
- When you asked questions, were you easy to understand?
Mostly. My method of questioning was similar to how Toni gave me answers. I read the question as I wrote it, but then went off-script to make it easier to understand. i.e providing examples, saying it in a different way and elaborating on the question itself. It wasn’t the perfect method – I’m well aware of that – but it worked for this interview. More on that at the last question.
- Did your body language (including eye contact) make your interviewees want to talk? How did you go about this?
My anxiety stopped me from maintaining eye contact for all of the interview, but I did my best and managed to pull through. As a person very ‘naturally’ nervous and not much for eye contact, I think this was an improvement for myself and a good result at the same time. It was bad at first, but I eased myself into it and managed to improve.
- Conduct and professionalism – did you know what you were talking about? DId you act professionally?
Weakest part, but not for ignorant reasons. To give background, I wrote an entire document on the lesson’s notes, how to take proper interviews, how to start off, etc. This, being a lesson, and wanting to get the interview done, I had rushed the beginning badly. I didn’t know how to properly start the interview off and, being college work, I mumbled that ‘it didn’t matter’ in this case. That’s the key part, there. I’d definitely do it differently, but I’m well aware of how to carry out an interview in the professional world, thanks to these notes.
As for knowing what I was talking about, I’d give that a big yes. I knew that everyone had different ways of handling this project, and that interests shapes one’s writing in big ways. That was my big question to Toni, asking her that very question, with good results. And, after the beginning, I was able to act professionally, nod, smile every so often and not be rude towards her.
- Did you come across any particular difficulties?
Finding a room to do the interview in. And time constraints. I worried that the interview wouldn’t be done by that day, and there weren’t many really quiet places. There was somewhere that Leasa had led us to, but it echoed our voices slightly and other people were speaking, making it not 100% ideal.
- What will you do differently next time?
Given more time and a second try at this, I would find a properly quiet room, organize a better script, speak more concisely, set out the introduction professionally and be able to see it as more than ‘just college work’. As I said above, it started out poorly, but it improved over time! And improvement is the best result I could’ve hoped for, here.
And, just as proof that I wrote notes for the interview video we were shown in class…