How to Write an Interview Paper

Updated: June 12, 2023

An essential skill is interviewing liberal arts students, and more so for journalists. If you already know about the interview as a genre and write it, then we are ready to help you do it correctly and effectively. In this interview paper guidelines, we will look at the principles of preparing for an interview, the process of talking and agreeing on the finished material.

What is an Interview Paper?

An interview is one of the ways of text formatting. The reader is presented with material consisting of the interviewer’s questions and the interlocutor’s answers. Sometimes there are no questions at all, but this is also an interview, simply constructed in the form of a monologue.

For a formal interview, the ratio of questions and answers is 20% of questions to 80% of answers. A skilled interviewer never gets a lot of attention. If he talks more than the interlocutor, then he does not know how to interview.

The subject interview is devoted to talking about the state of affairs in any area of ​​human activity. The subject of the interview here is an expert in a particular field and receives questions exclusively on his topic and answers like a professional. The personal opinion of the interlocutor is not taken into account.

For example, a doctor talks about standardized methods of personal protection against coronavirus and does not say too much about the political background of the current panic.

In addition to experts, the heroes of subject interviews can be eyewitnesses or participants in some significant events. The result is a subgenre called informational interviews. Asking such a person questions, you need to get as many details of what happened as possible.

How to Start an Interview Paper

Foremost, you must find information about the interlocutor, about his activities, personality. It is worth focusing on the area to which the dialogue will be devoted. The more facts you can collect, the fewer chances the interlocutor will have to manipulate them. It is helpful to familiarize yourself with previous interviews if the person has already given them. But in addition to collecting data, it is essential to think ahead about your actions several steps ahead.

We try to imagine how the interlocutor will answer and what questions can be asked after that. At the same time, we create a kind of mind-map of questions with many branches, depending on which direction the conversation will go. You can even rehearse the scenario with the likely options for the development of the conversation.

When discussing a large and complex issue, it is helpful to write a small introductory paragraph at the beginning of the text explaining what is going on. If the interlocutor answered trite and boring places, such pieces generally need to be safely cut out.

In conversation, make sure that the rhythm is not monotonous. Construct the conversation so that the final text alternates between short and long paragraphs, instant exchanges of remarks, and thoughtful, lengthy reasoning. Monotonous reading of sentences and paragraphs of the same volume puts you to sleep. The torn shape, on the contrary, keeps the reader in good shape, arouses interest and a desire to read to the end.

How to Structure an Interview Paper

Journalists practice two main methods, the choice of which depends on the degree of mastery of the material:

  • a list of ready-formulated questions with excellent orientation in the upcoming discussion topic;
  • the names of the topics (or the main one) around which the dialogue is planned. If it is impossible in advance, it is worthwhile to study the topic in detail.

Both of these options are united by one rule. This is the layout of the main blow of the interview. The main task is to think over how and in what places in the interview we will extract vital phrases from the interlocutor that will help to make the material better and more attractive in the future.

How to End an Interview Paper

Or what is the optimal length of the interview? You can record an ordinary face-to-face conversation using a dictaphone, and a telephone conversation, and via Skype, WhatsApp, etc. There is a general rule to understand when to finish conducting an interview. One minute of speaking is equal to 10 printed lines.

This is important to consider, especially when you are preparing an interview for a third-party resource, magazine, newspaper with a limited amount of text. For example, for 100–150 lines, it is enough to talk for about half an hour. This time is quite enough to ask 3-4 main questions and the same number of clarifying questions for each of them.

Thirty minutes is enough, even considering that oral speech during transcription is permanently reduced due to more accurate formulations, removal of wateriness, words of parasites, etc. But when decoding, our task is to understand what the person meant, why he expressed himself this way and not otherwise, and delve into the meaning of what was said.

Reconsideration and adaptation for the reader of the interlocutor’s remarks are welcome, and not a simple transcript. You can do the same with your questions. You can change them so that they better fit the answers, but without changing the essence.

Interview Paper Outline

An interview in which there are no figurative answers turns into dry interrogation. But not every interlocutor is ready to give colorful answers immediately. To get them, we resort to some tricks.

Themselves formulate a figurative nature with the most appropriate metaphors and other artistic techniques to the nature of the conversation and the person.

Another way to get a definitive answer is to show complete disagreement with the interlocutor throughout several replies. This will force him to give more and more arguments in favor of his point of view and, thus, to open up better, to pronounce what was not planned initially.

Keep in mind that you need to make a plan to calculate the time and not delay the interview. Also, remember that no one is interested in reading boring questions. Be simpler, more human. Ask the way you would ask an acquaintance or friend.

At the same time, don’t go overboard. Yes, it is fashionable to ask provocative questions, but it is better to warn the person about this in advance. So write to your interlocutor that I am asking you about fees and personal life, do you mind? And act according to the person’s reaction.

How to Write an Interview Paper Step by Step

The structure of the interview in many cases must be like this.

  1. At the beginning of the conversation, the author must demonstrate a direct connection between the interlocutor and the event;
  2. Then delve directly into the covered topic, disassemble the subject of the conversation, provide explanations and assessments;
  3. In the end, give orderly conclusions, results, and recommendations and the person’s impressions, if this is a conversation with an eyewitness or a participant in the event.

Also, if you don’t know how to write an interview paper in APA format, you can find tips on the internet.

Interview Paper Introduction

In your introduction, you need to introduce the person to whom you will be asking questions. Describe the area of his activity or event in which he is involved. After reviewing, you need to proceed with the questions.

Interview Paper Body

The rules for writing and asking questions are simple. You need:

  • To formulate them clearly and unambiguously;
  • Do not ask too general questions;
  • Do not ask what the interlocutor has no idea about.

Your primary and goals are to get information about the person’s attitude to the event, arrange it correctly, and adhere to the plan/structure.

Interview Paper Conclusion

Finally, you can ask the final questions. Then you need to take stock of the interview. Filter information carefully. Better to double-check a hundred times than to receive accusations of unprofessionalism and rewrite the article later.

Need Interview Paper Help?

As you can see, the interview is not that simple and easy. To do this, you need to spend a lot of time and effort to make the interview informative, practical, and interesting.

Experts who have been writing interviews for years on different topics and structures can help you solve this problem. To do this, you just need to fill out an application, describe the task and get help or interview paper tips from highly qualified essay writers.

George Lynch
George Lynch
Literature, Psychology, Religion
Experience: 3+ years
I’ve been enjoying academic writing since day one in college. Today, having a full-time job, I’m still looking forward to writing essays and research papers online for others.
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