How to Write an Interview Essay

4 Widespread Interview Paper Samples

How to Write an Interview Essay

How to Write An Interview Essay

Article Summary

To write an essay from an interview, you’ll first have to decide on the format the essay will take, as this will determine the structure and what you write. The most common form is the narrative format, in which you use direct quotes and paraphrase your subject to add context and detail, or you can write in a more conversational tone, or even in a directly transcribed question-and-answer form. Once you decide on format, plan an outline by forming a central thesis, which will be the central statement your essay is making. Add onto the outline by drafting supporting evidence directly from the interview and from other sources, like books, newspaper articles, other essays, anything else to support your point. Write and finish the essay by combining information from the interview and other sources with your own explanations and words.

Besides the main parts of your essay, including the introduction, body, and conclusions, we recommend you start preparing your paper with an interview essay outline, which will show the logical structure of your work, and help you with maintaining the main idea throughout the whole paper. So, what is the basic outline for an interview essay?

  1. Introduction part: Get your audience acquainted with the main topic of the essay and draw their attention.
  2. Thesis statement: It is a sentence (or a few sentences) that gives some details about the interview participant (participants) and the central question or story.
  3. Body part (3 paragraphs): Each paragraph could describe different ideas raised by one person or various viewpoints concerning the same matter expressed by different people.
  4. Conclusion: Draw a coherent picture of a person you’ve interviewed, or write your own conclusion based on their answers.

Interview conducting tip 1

When you have decided on what you are going to write in each particular part of your paper, or even before that, there is one more important thing to consider — you are to choose your interview essay format. There are at least three main types: narrative, conversational and Q {amp}amp; A.

  • Narrative. You are free to use not only the person’s direct speech but also retell their words via quotes and add your own thoughts. This type of essay gives you more freedom for analysis, and you can omit redundant or useless information.
  • Conversational. It has a less strict style of the essay than the others. Here you have several options of how to address the audience (first- or second-person narration).
  • Q {amp}amp; A. When writing an interview paper in Q {amp}amp; A format, you are to use only exact quotes without any changes. Most often such a format can be seen in magazines, and it is better to implement it if you have only one interviewee.

Choose a format that will make your essay perfect and exciting, and embark on writing an «A» grade interview paper.

Interview essays are typically based on research gathered from personal testimonies. This could be based on one’s personal experiences or their own input on a given matter. It may be informative essay, descriptive essay, or even persuasive essays, depending on the questions asked by the interviewer.

The content of the essay may include direct quotes from the interview or it may come in a written narrative form. Through this, we are able to gain additional information from a particular perspective.

For every essay, a thesis statement is needed to help your readers understand the subject being tackled in your work. For an interview short essay, you would need to talk about your interviewee. Any information that will create a credible image for your interviewee will be necessary.

Next, it’s necessary to include the significant ideas that you have acquired from your interview. Ideally, you should pick three of these ideas, elaborate what has been said, and present it in paragraphs.

When writing an interview essay, it would be best to create an outline first.

Organize the information you have gathered from your interviewee and structure it in a logical order. This could be from one’s personal information to the most compelling details gathered. Be reminded of the standard parts of an essay and be sure to apply it to your own work.

Even when most, if not all, of your essay’s content is based on what you have gathered from your interviewee, you would still need to create a good starting of essay and end to your essay.

Additionally, do not forget to put quotation marks around the exact words used by your interviewee. It would also be best to proofread your work and make sure that there is a smooth transition for each thought. You may also like personal essay examples {amp}amp; samples.

You can end your interview essay how ever you wish to do so. It could be about your learning from the interview, a call to action, or a brief summary writing from what has been expressed in the essay.

But keep in mind, this would depend on your purpose for writing the essay. For instance, if you interviewed a biologist to spread awareness about mother nature, then it would be best to conclude your essay with a call to action. Knowing this, it’s important to end your essay well enough for it to be memorable.

Interview Essay

Post Published On: 26 March, 2018

Within an interview essay, you can present somebody’s thoughts on a certain topic, and this essay type also offers you an opportunity to consider somebody’s ideas in a more general context or analyze them.Interview essays are crucial for those who study journalism or just want to improve writing skills. There are several types of interview essays, but all of them are aimed to create an impression that readers talked to somebody personally.

Now let’s consider interview essays in more detail, so you’ll be able to write a good essay, following simple step-by-step instructions.

  1. Define the purpose of your paper

The purpose of your essay affects the interviewed person, it determines the chosen method and some features of essay writing.

  • If your assignment is about some scientific phenomenon, you’ll interview a scientist. If it’s about some period in history, you’ll interview a historian or a person who participated in these events or lived during these times.
  • If your essay is aimed to provide a certain opinion, you’ll want to interview an authoritative person who has a strong opinion and expresses it impressively.
  • If your essay is devoted to public opinion, you’ll have to interview many people. On contrary, if it represents a particular view of a random person, you will choose only one person to interview.
  1. Research the subject of an interview and prepare your questions

To write a good essay, you have to conduct a good interview. In turn, a good interview is impossible without a proper understanding of the subject and preparation. Study your subject, its history,and most important issues. You have to collect enough information to write a list of interesting and relevant questions.

  • Read sources devoted to your subject and any available printed materials. The more you know about it, the more interesting and specific questions you can ask.
  • Look up some existing interviews about this subject, This will allow you to determine what questions are the most important, as well as figure out what unique questions you can ask and what questions may be too banal.
  • Some questions may be answered with either “yes” or “no”. Such questions are good to clarify some crucial and specific details. On the other hand, open questions which imply a detailed answer can help you gather additional data.
  • Draft a list of questions that will serve as a blueprint for your interview. We suggest preparing more questions so you’ll be able to select the most appropriate ones during the interview. You don’t know what an interviewed person will be focused on – it may be a topic that you considered a side subject. Sort your questions by importance or in the order that you plan to ask them. Highlight the most important questions.
  1. Arrange the interview

First of all, you have to contact your interviewee to define a place and time to meet. Don’t forget to get a necessary permission for recording answers or making photos. Always explain who you are and why you’re interested in interviewing this particular person.

  • Find a quiet place. It may be a restaurant, a library, or a quiet location, for example, in some park.
  • The interviewee must express his or her consent regarding the use of the recorded material. According to the law, you have to get a written permission to record an interview.
  • If the person you wanted to interview can’t meet with you or is just not interested in the interview, you must have your plan B that implies another person familiar with the subject.
  • Once you’ve arranged the interview, make sure to get there on time.
  1. Conduct the interview

Even if you record the interview on a phone or a voice recorder, take notes. It will help you remember some points that appear to be especially interesting or important.

  • Use a recording device that will help you clarify the context of some noted phrases during the writing process.
  • Be respectful and wait for your interviewee’s responses with patience. The interviewed person must have time to think and figure out answers. Create a relaxed environment for the conversation. Remember that it’s better to get a few accurate and meaningful responses than many answers given in a hurry.
  • Right after you’ve finished interviewing someone, jot down your fresh impressions and thoughts. You will need these notes while writing an essay.
  • At the end of the interview, thank your interviewee.
  1. Determine the format of your essay

Usually, if you get an essay assigned, you will be given instructions on the essay format. Talk to your instructor to clarify all the necessary details, such as the expected questions or answers, the use of paraphrasing, the context, and the format of quotes. Generally, there are three most common interview types:

  • It’s an informal format which allows you to use the first and the second person. It fits a wide range of essays, including magazine articles and college assignments.
  • Narrative interview essays are formal, and it’s the most common type of college assignments. Some answers may be paraphrased. This format also allows you to provide background information.
  • Question – answer. Essays of this type consist only of direct quotes. It looks like a list of questions and answers written in a form of a dialogue. However, you can add some comments in parentheses. This format fits essays that include only one interviewee or a group of closely related people, such as a cast ofa movie or spouses.
  1. Draw up an outline

Your outline may vary depending on the essay type. However, it must include an introduction that describes your subject and the purpose of the interview.

  • Listen to your recordings and read your notes. You have to consider both the most substantial parts of the interview and themes that you marked as important while talking to a person. This information will help you define what you’re going to write and in what order you should place questions and answers.
  • Your outline may be a basis for the introduction. Start it with an anecdote or interesting fact about the interviewee. After that, familiarize your readers with main points and write your thesis statement. You have to support your thesis with several facts, and summarize the presented material in the conclusion. Most of thecollege essays imply a five-paragraph structure (introduction, three body paragraphs, and conclusion), and you can use this structure for your interview essay as well.
  1. Evolve your thesis statement

If your essay is aimed to only introduce your readers to a person, the thesis statement may be a concise summary of his or her background, qualifications, and achievements.

If the interview is used in your essay to support a certain position or provide an opinion on some broad issue, the thesis statement may formulate this position, mentioning the interviewee in the context of the considered issue.

No matter what format you choose, remember that your thesis statement must be clear and coherent. Make sure that other parts of the essay refer to your thesis statement.

  1. Complete your essay

The body of the essay must be tied to your thesis statement and cover the interview in details.

  • Interviews often contain many repetitive phrases, even if you prepare good questions. You have to polish your essay and remove all unnecessary elements. You have to keep only information that corresponds to the idea of your essay and focuses on the subject.
  • You can find many useful materials on interview essays on the internet. Visit websites of prestigious universities and read articles. For example, University of North Carolina Writing Center website contains many tips on how to get rid of similar phrases, and how to use transcriptions. You will also learn how to consider the interview in a global context by using paraphrasing. You can also find some detailed instructions on how to transfer personal experience.
  1. Proofread your writings

Never forget to revise and proofread your work, regardless of its type.

  • Obviously, you must read your essay a few times. But you also have to find somebody else who will look it over. Sometimes you may miss something in your own work, so others will help you by providing a new perspective.
  • Return to your notes that you’ve taken right after the interview and look whether your essay still represents the actual interview. While editing, you may change your essay considerably, so make sure that the initial intention remained the same. If you can, meet the interviewee and let him or her read your essay to understand whether it reflects their opinion correctly.
  1. Specify your sources

Usually, you don’t need to include the specific citation of the entire interview, but you must cite any additional materials used to collect data. We also suggest referring contextual information according to the required citation format.

Remember that all direct quotations must be written in quotation marks, while paraphrasing shouldn’t include them.

Finally, the last and the most important rule is that you shouldn’t present your own thoughts as someone else’s words. Respect interviewee’s opinion, and you’ll write a perfect interview essay!

Plan the outline of your interview essay based on the ordering of your reasons.

Introduction/Conclusion: Decide how you will begin and conclude your essay. Your introduction should include the question you asked. Your opening might be suggested by some of the comments from your interviews or you might want to describe a situation which causes your question. For example, in a paper about whether you would give money to a homeless person, you could open with a scenario or story about being approached by a woman in a parking lot and having to decide whether to give money. You might also use description, statistics, and/or questions in your opening (describe homeless people in a big city, give statistics, and end with the question you asked in your interview). You could also begin with a dictionary definition, an appropriate reference to a movie, T.V. show, or song, or a quote.

Body: List the reasons in order. The body of your essay should follow the order of reasons that you put together from your notes. Be sure to quote, paraphrase, and summarize your sources. Also be sure to analyze the connections between reasons and why people might come to those conclusions.

Conclusion: Your response. You will conclude the paper with a paragraph or two explaining which point-of-view, in your opinion, has the most validity, and why. If none of the viewpoints from your interviews coincided with your opinion, you should talk about that.

Interviews can be a great way to get first person information on the life and experiences of your subject. This article will walk you through the steps on how to write an interview essay.

Before writing the essay, you have a lot of prep work to do. Decide what you would like to write about and determine an interesting figure you can interview. Do some preliminary research before the interview itself to decide what kind of questions you should ask.

During the interview, make sure you take a lot of notes, or best of all, tape record the interview (with your subject’s permission) so you can remain focused on the conversation. If you need more help with the interview portion, read this article.

Hopefully, you took copious (many) notes during your interview and hopefully you were allowed to record the interview to catch any information that you missed in your notes. Now, you need to organize your information into a logical outline

Probably the easiest way to organize all the information is to read through your notes and to listen to the recording of the interview. You need to think about what the reader would like to know about the person you interviewed.

Pick three main themes or ideas that you talked about during the interview. These will become body paragraphs for your essay. Once you have wrapped your brain around the three main things you are going to talk about in your essay, you need to write out an outline.

Depending on the assigned length of your paper, you can write a paragraph for each Roman numeral on your outline. However, if you need to write a longer essay, you can have several paragraphs for Roman numerals II, III, and IV.

You need to make sure that you put quotation marks around words that the person said, and you need to make sure that you body paragraphs support your thesis statement. Once you have a rough draft written, you need someone to peer-edit your paper. Then, you can write a final copy for your teacher.

You should now be an expert on how to write an interview essay. You may need to edit and revise your essay to get a top grade, but you should understand the writing process for the interview essay.

The following articles will help you to complete an interview and write the interview essay.

  1. How to Interview Someone for a Paper
  2. How to Write an Interview Essay

Several types of interview papers exist; we will cover five of the most popular types of this essay.

How to Write an Interview Essay

Interview essay format is another important information to discuss. The text of this type is formatted according to the existing academic writing standards (MLA referencing style, APA, Chicago, etc.

) Dedicate enough time to studying different writing styles not to fail this mission. Pay attention to the way you quote the person. Mind how you create a list of references on Bibliography page. A proper interview essay format is part of the grading rubric, so do not underestimate its value!

It is impossible to write a good paper without having a plan meaning an organized essay outline. The structure is standardized: so, how to write an interview essay?

Body paragraphs

The structure of any five-paragraph essay is identical. The body paragraphs must contain an important piece of information reflected in the paragraph’s main argument, its first sentence. Involve minimum three main ideas of your written work.

How to end an interview essay perfectly

The introduction of a good interview essay should tell what the primary question you want to answer is. State the main issue of your essay clearly, but try to make it interesting to the audience. Choose a topic, discussion of which will be exciting for your interviewee — this will provide enjoyable and unusual answers that will make your interview essay better.

The primary purpose of an interview essay could be just to present a particular person to your audience. In this case, your thesis statement will include some background facts about the interviewee. If you are to analyze ideas of different people to create a background for your own conclusion, you have to state your main question and prepare your reader to what your interviewee is going to tell them about.

A refined thesis statement is always clear and understandable. You should make sure it’s maintained appropriately throughout your essay. Since you know how to write a thesis statement for an interview essay and come up with a catchy introduction, it’s time to move confidently to the body part of your writing.

Interview essay thesis statement

In fact, you have a lot of ways to finish your interview paper. A proper interview essay conclusion can highlight the following aspects:

  • your reaction to the interviewees’ answers;
  • the influence of responses on your own thoughts;
  • the answer to your introductory question based on the interview results;
  • changes in general statistics influenced by the responses received;
  • the logical end of the narration (if you just told somebody’s story).

Besides, a conclusion can prove or refute the idea you made at the beginning of your essay. The matter is it should be grounded and coherent. Don’t neglect the rereading and proofreading of your interview essay to avoid some common or silly mistakes.

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