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Powerful Presence

I would first off like to say, WOW, President JoAnne Boyle has a powerful presence walking into a room. I actually have met and know President Boyle, but was terrified to think she was in our class!! Some underclassmen may never have even seen her before, but when they did they stopped DEAD in there tracks, just as the rest of us did! I think breaking the ice was the hardest part, and well frankly we all need to get over that. Interviewing is difficult, especially when someone superior is at hand, you don't want to offend them or sound stupid-they just hold so much power over you! I am ashamed to say, I was chicken to ask some questions that I wasn't sure would make sense or sound silly. I regret this, and hopefully for my second article I will be able to get an interview with her to get some more imput into my angle.

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Comments (3)

I would never have scored that interview with the creator of Star Trek if I'd been too nervous to speak. Yes, I was nervous, but if you want the story, you get over it, fast.

Chelsea Oliver:

I was stopped dead in my tracks...no lie. lol

ChrisU:

If it's the type of questions you want to ask that makes you nervous, try starting out with easy questions, then build your way up to the harder ones.

Also, keep in mind that many sources (not necessarily President Boyle, because she has a lot of experience, but many others out there) will be just as nervous as you are during an interview. They don't want to screw up and say something to make themselves sound stupid or insensitive or corrupt, so they'll probably stumble through some of their answers every now and then.

If you make sure you schedule enough time for the interview, don't be afraid to take your time and get to know the person early on, either. Not only will this help you feel more comfortable asking the person your questions, but it will also make the person more comfortable answering them (meaning you might get more information than you would have otherwise).

I used to get really nervous during interviews, too. In truth, you're always going to be at least a little nervous, but the trick to making the most of your experiences is to be well-prepared ahead of time. Make notes for yourself, prepare some questions ahead of time (as well as the order in which you'd like to ask them), and try to learn as much as you can about the topics present in your story before the interview so you won't waste your time (and the time of the person you're interviewing) asking questions that could easily be answered by looking it up online or in a book somewhere.

The first time I went out on assignment as part of my current internship, I had no questions in mind, no chance to prepare at all, and it was tough. Fortunately, all we needed to get was about twenty seconds of tape of a woman talking about the event, so a few easy questions like "Why are you here today? Why is this important to you?" were more than adequate.

The point is, print journalism usually gives you the chance to plan ahead at least a little bit, so take advantage of that whenever you can.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 25, 2007 7:22 PM.

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