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#Tip: How to become a better interviewer

March 6th, 2013Posted by in Top tips for journalists


As a journalist you have no doubt interviewed hundreds of people. But no matter how experienced you are it is worth a read of this post on interview tips on Poynter.

For example, one of the tips in the post by Chip Scanlan is to “capture how people talk”. And he includes a useful illustration:

The most powerful quotes are short, sometimes just fragments of speech. In a story about a two-car collision that killed two Alabama sisters traveling to visit each other, Jeffrey Gettleman of The New York Times used simple quotes that illustrated what the Roman orator Cicero called brevity’s “great charm of eloquence.”

“They weren’t fancy women,” said their sister Billie Walker. “They loved good conversation. And sugar biscuits.”

Just 11 words in quotes, yet they speak volumes about the victims.

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