From the Scottish Refugee Council to the Mac Twins, qmunicate have interviewed a vast array of people in our time. But we get that interviews can seem scary, especially if you’ve never done one before, so here are our top tips for them!
What sort of interviews are available?
In the past we have interviewed local social enterprises,musicians, the Glasgow Uni rector, and the founders of Femspectives Film Festival. But it’s not limited to this, and you may have the chance to interview other people, including politicians, authors, and directors.
Our most popular interviews are to do with music or film, so our music editor, Grace, and film editor, Amelie, share some details about these.
- Consider whether they have a new album or single out
- Watch YouTube interviews if available
- Focusing on the film’s themes
- The process of making the film
- On how it was received at film festivals
Now for some general tips on the interview process.
Before the interview:
- Are there any campaigns or causes which are important to the interviewee?
- This will make you seem self-confident and assured, and you will always have something to fall back on if the conversation stagnates
- Make sure that they flow naturally
- If you’re unsure about any of the questions you want to ask, or have any questions about the interview yourself, don’t hesitate to message your editor for advice
- Ensure that your device is charged and has enough space to record
- Ensure that you have permission to record
- Place the device in the middle between you and the interviewee so that you can record both sides of the conversation
During the interview:
- For example, ask them about current projects
- But don’t be too generic, you should show that you know about the person’s work and why they are currently being interviewed
- Avoid invasive, personal questions
- Make notes of key points of their answers during the interview, and then possibly ask them to elaborate on them and respond to the answers with related questions.
- Don’t stick to the script- if the interview moves away from your prepared questions but the answers are still good and relevant, lean into that! That way you can have a natural-feeling interview that goes in depth on key topics
- Value unexpected chat – this often makes the interview unique and enjoyable for both you and the interviewee
- This is especially true for musicians as they often have to go on stage after. You don’t want to be cut off before you ask the best questions!
After the interview:
- Consider having the interview tie in with the review in its themes
There are two main ways to go about writing the article.
We looked at two different examples of interviews, and discussed the strengths and weaknesses of each one.
We hope that this has helped make interviews seem a little less scary. Keep your eyes peeled for any upcoming interview opportunities, and if you have any issues please feel free to message Eleanor, the editor-in-chief.