I’m used to being the one in control of an interview. I decide what questions to ask in what order and in what way to get the information I want. So, when I was interviewed yesterday morning for a book about tattoos, it was eerie being… vulnerable… to the interviewers questions.
Often times when I conduct an interview, I can tell when the subject is uncomfortable or worried about my questions. They may be weary of the spin I’m going to give their answers. I never understood that until yesterday. Basic questions about a tattoo made me uneasy about how the book writer was going to perceive my answers. It’s all about perspective.
I also couldn’t help analyze and criticize her questions (or lack thereof). She really only skimmed the surface of a topic that could have gone so much deeper. Nor did she ask if there was anything we felt needed to be talked about. It wasn’t my interview to conduct, so I didn’t add anything outside of her questions, but my cocky side kept making additions to her list in my head.
Interviews can be very delicate. I always feel the need to organize the questions and conversation format before I go into anything just to make sure I get every little piece of information and detail. Sure, often times the conversation goes in a different direction based on the information, but at least I have an idea of what I’ll need to be walking away with a head of time. My interviews always seem to last a fairly good amount of time too, because I like to ask a lot of detailed questions in order to cover every aspect of the story if needed. Having too much information is better than not having enough.
So remember, plan a head of time, organize, and ask everything you can think of.