Interviewing. It’s just talking to someone and using their quotes for a story. Simple, right? Not so fast. Interviewing different sources and subjects – either for a print feature, content marketing story, case study, book or other type of writing project – takes skill. And in this masterclass, senior journalists John Burfitt and Clare Rigden share essential tips, techniques and the lessons they’ve learned over decades of interviewing subjects for print, digital and corporate clients. You’ll learn so many strategies to help you nail every interview you do – be prepared to take notes!
- Finding the right sources for interviews (including whether it’s a journalism or content marketing story)
- Avoiding common interviewing mistakes even experienced journos make
- Strategies for getting more stories out of one interview
- Best questions to ask (and how your questions can make or break the interview)
- A self-awareness checklist to do before every interview.
- Why interviews are more essential than ever, especially in the age of the ‘write-around’ (and the recent Domain debacle)
- Pre-interview prep – why to do it and how much research you really need to do on your interviewees
- How to quickly create a rapport with your interviewee on the day
- Tips and strategies for handling difficult interviewees
- Recording and transcribing – should you DIY or outsource? Plus, online services and tech solutions available.
All about John
John Burfitt conducted his first interview for a story for his local newspaper when he was 16 years old. In the years since, working as a journalist, copywriter and content creator, John has interviewed Prime Ministers, Premiers, Oscar-winners, CEOs, academics, business leaders, entertainment legends and Olympic greats – from exclusive one-on-one chats through to red carpet circuses. He’s also interviewed just as many local heroes, first responders and crisis survivors, giving him a great base from which to teach interviewing skills in journalism at five universities. He remains committed to the philosophy that an ‘interview is a conversation with a clear purpose’.
All about Clare
Clare Rigden is a freelance journalist, based in Melbourne. For twenty years she has been one of the country’s leading entertainment reporters, her work appearing in a range of publications from TV Week and NW, to the Sydney Morning Herald and The Guardian. Over two decades she has interviewed just about every celebrity you can think of, from Beyonce Knowles to the guy who plays Toadie in Neighbours. She currently files for SMH/The Age, is a columnist for Yahoo Lifestyle and works as a regular contributor at realestate.com.au.