Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Being on the Other Side

    About a week ago, I was interviewed by a USA Today reporter about my trip to New Hampshire with my Media and American Politics class.  As a reporter for The Defender this semester, I am used to being on the question-asking side of things.  It seems like the less-stressful position during the interview.  This time, it was my turn to be in the hot-seat.
    I had been interviewed before by my local newspaper, but this seemed so much more intimidating! I was really excited to be interviewed, but really nervous at the same time.  I know how annoying it is as a reporter to have a source who does not completely articulate his or her points.  I wanted to try to be as articulate as possible, something I have trouble with as it is often very difficult for me to think on my feet when answering a question in almost any situation.  I am the kind of person who likes to take a minute or two to formulate my answers before saying them out loud in an attempt to sound intelligent rather than like a bumbling idiot.  I am much more articulate when I write my answers.
    I spent a lot of time the night before and the morning of the interview trying to think of the questions the reporter might ask and the things I might say to answer those questions.  I seemed pretty well-prepared until the reporter actually called and started interviewing me.  A lot of questions I did not think of before the interview.  By the time the interview ended, I was not sure whether or not I had completely gotten my point across or if I actually gave the reporter usable quotes.  I actually apologized to the reporter after the fact explaining how little I actually am on that side of the interview.  He was very nice and understanding though, which gave me confidence that I may have done better than I thought.
    Whether I'm on the side of the questioner or the side of the interviewee, interviews are always a learning process.  I think being on both sides of the process helps reporters improve by giving them a better understanding of how to frame questions and what kinds of answers to look for.  This time, as well as the other times I've been interviewed, have been very beneficial to how I go about my interviews.
    To view the USA Today article, click here.
    If you have any questions, feel free to email me (emurray@mail.smcvt.edu), tweet me (LittleLizzie33) or ask me a question on formspring (lizmurray3).

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