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Advance Interview

Is an author, speaker or entertainer of potential interest to your readers coming to town? You may already be in the habit of letting readers know about such events ahead of time. But you can also interview authors or speakers before they arrive, giving your readers an insight into a person’s work and character that may whet their appetite to attend the event.

First, do research online about the person. Then, check Web sites for press contact information — there’s almost always someone listed under “press” or “to arrange for an interview” when authors and show-business people are booked in your city. You’ll need to explain who you are, why you want to do an interview and how you’ll use it.

If they can’t accommodate an interview, you can still write an advance story reporting highlights of the person’s career. highlighted pop-up book author Matt Van Fleet’s appearance in a kindergarten classroom to “preview” his offer to sign books purchased at a local bookstore. It wasn’t an “event,” but see how Van Fleet’s quotes engaged potential readers of his books.

Sample Script:

Introduce yourself and say, “I’m writing an article previewing John Smith’s visit to our arts center. Can I set up a time to ask a couple of questions? Also, can you send me a digital photo that I can use?”

1. Newsgathering Interview
2. Confirmation Interview
3. Reaction Interview
4. Person-on-the-street Interview
5. Experts Interview
6. Balance Interview
7. Q & A Interview
8. Advance Interview
9. In-depth Interview
10. Gotcha Interview

Next Section (In-Depth Interview)

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