INTERVIEWING AND SCRIPT WRITING Why is the interview important? This is where you get the background information and sound bites to use during your story, so it is very important. Take appropriate steps Before, during, and after the interview Before the Interview Get your thoughts together This will help you look more professional and will help keep the interview alive. If you do not have a plan, the person you are interviewing may feel that you are wasting their time. Ask yourself these questions when developing ideas for your interview. How do I make this story real for my audience? How do I make a difference? How do I tell this story in a compelling and clear way? Before the Interview Do your research. Before the Interview Think of the questions you want to ask each of your contacts for your story. Remember, while you don’t want to give the answers to the person you are interviewing you can ask the right questions to get the story you are looking for. Also, if you start with an angle (point of view) in mind and your contacts give you the idea for an even better story, go with it, it’s ok to change your angle. Interviewing Tips Do not use the same expert all the time. Find Think about all the different people that could be interviewed for a story. Ex. new sources for your stories. Egg Recall You could interview the producer, the consumer, or the manager at the grocery store. If you interview people that are affected by the story it adds a human touch. During the Interview Go into your interview knowledgeable and with a clear vision of what you want to accomplish. As stated before this will only make YOU look better. Learn about your subject before the interview. Ask others what they think is important. Have an idea of what questions you will ask. Write Make them down and take them with you. the interview a conversation. During the Interview Gather information off-camera and then use the camera or recorder to get your sound bites (short pieces of information from the interview). Always pay attention to what is going on in the world around by use of news and internet. Remember the first question sets the tone of the interview. Treat people the way you would want to be treated. Don’t tell them the specific questions before hand, because it leads to rehearsed answers. Use both a professional, but conversational tone. Ask questions that will be answered with more than a ‘yes’ or ‘no’. During the interview Look the person in the. Sit still. When shooting video ask them to look at you not the camera. The camera should be placed over your shoulder. Do NOT chew gum during an interview. If possible try to conduct the interview at the scene of the event or setting of the story. During the Interview Get a full name Check spelling Get contact information incase you need clarification later. Ask them to pronounce their name correctly as well and get official titles. Remember sometimes people lie or shade the truth. Sometimes you have to read between the lines. Watch facial expressions to see if they really agree with what they are saying. Ask probing questions to ensure you have the correct meaning. Ex. Tell me more about… or when you say “_____” what do you mean by that? Wrapping up the interview Make sure that before you finish your interview you have all the answers you need. Ask the interviewee to summarize in a few sentences if you need them to. Usually helpful if the person is a rambler. Take the time to get the most clear understandable statement. Even if it means asking the question two or three times or rewording it. Wrapping up the interview Once you have finished asking your questions ask the person if there is anything they would like to add. If you have a photographer ask if there is anything they want answered. Sometimes others hear things differently or think of things you might not. Writing the Script After the interview process, you will want to prepare a script for use with your video. Much like you prepared for your interview, you will want to organize all of your ideas. Gather facts to back up your quotes from contacts. Decide which quotes you want to use. Write a lead and fillers that work with your quotes. Decide what parts are going to be “live” and which “voice over” voice over: meaning you can hear the voice, but you do not see a person just footage. Scripts are written in two columns. The column on the left is for the video footage. The right column is for information for the script. (What’s going to be said) Script Format Video Description USE ALL CAPS FOR VIDEO INSTRUCTIONS Be detailed with directions Audio Description Actual script goes here and should be double spaced. Structure of Story Telling Three Act Structure Act One: Beginning Who, what, when, where, when of the story Over when this is set up Act Two: Middle Journey that takes place Main part of the story or conflict End Resolution Your script should be centered around bringing the three acts structure to life. Script Writing Tips Before writing your script get all of your information organized. Engage in pre-writing This allows you to get all of your thoughts down on paper. Read your script out loud. Viewers will hear not read the message. Check closely for grammatical errors. Review Organization is key to a great interview. Make sure you know what information you are looking for and ask those questions. Always have a plan! Prepare a script for your video. As with an interview, organization is important before, during and after shooting your video.