The Craft of Interviewing, by John Brady

My Copy: 9780394724690

Though some of the technology mentioned and tricks-of-the-trade may be outdated (published in 1976 after all), it must be doing something right if it’s still in print today.

The Craft of Interviewing contains a slew of wisdom from an editor of Writer’s Digest magazine who warns us in the introduction, “For no matter how fine a writer might be, he is crippled if he is not an effective interviewer.” (pg 1).  Brady passes along insight from those who have been there before, looking for prime interviews and bungling them in turns.

The book is a good resource for anyone wanting to understand the process of interviewing, what all should be involved and what to avoid. It contains plenty of basic information to get one started, no matter what age of journalism you’re in. Even in our fast-paced, over-technical world of the 21st century, there is plenty to work with in these pages.

I would recommend this and I’ll definitely keep it on my shelves to refer back to. Some of the stories of blunders and surprises made me laugh, and you know that these are only a fraction of the gaffs that have happened in the real world. The book gets into good detail about the process of interviewing–before, during, after–and gives specifics in chapters on tape recording and the fallacies and confusion surrounding “off-the-record” remarks and how to deal with them. That alone would probably save some careers, even today.

I recommend The Craft of Interviewing to anyone wanting to understand how to approach people for interviews (well, duh), but also those wanting to extract the best info under unique circumstances and changes. For anyone wanting to understand how to approach people and the ins and outs of not making a fool of yourself (no matter how experienced), this is a great help.

I didn’t see an updated version anywhere, but if there is one, then by all means get it (it could only be better, after all).late

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