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The art of the interview

Did April sneak up on other people like it did me?

It seems like just yesterday we were welcoming in 2023, and now we’re already three months in. Of course, at my age, three months is a pretty small percentage of my life, so that might be why time seems to telescope sometimes.

This past week was busier than normal for me. For those who may not know, every Tuesday from 9 to 10 a.m., I host the After Nine show on CFIS community radio.

Next Sunday is Easter Sunday (in case you didn’t know). That means I had to take into account some people having Good Friday off, some having Easter Monday off, and some having both.

I decided to get the guests for not just what is now yesterday’s show, but next Tuesday’s show as well, as soon as I could. The last time I checked as I write this column on Saturday evening, I had two guests confirmed and another one who had said they would love to be on, but I haven’t finalized anything with them.

Some people ask me what it’s like hosting a talk show on community radio. Well, since I worked in community newspapers for about 25 years before I became a radio star (Editor’s Note: No, he isn’t), I found it was basically the same thing.

In newspapers, I interviewed people and then wrote up stories. On the radio, I interview people, but I don’t then have to race back to the office and type it up before deadline.

It makes things a lot easier. The one thing I have to remember when I’m doing interviews on the radio is that people can’t see me, so my grand hand gestures don’t mean a thing to the people listening to the show. This fact has been noted a number of times by the station manager, but I still do it.

The other big difference between newspapers and radio? Well, in the newspaper, I had to make sure I spelled a person’s name right, but didn’t have to worry about pronunciation. In radio, I need to pronounce it right, but on my notes for the show, I can have it written phonetically without worrying about the spelling.

I’ve always enjoyed interviewing people, and the biggest thing I’ve found in radio is to remember the listener probably doesn’t know much about the subject I’m interviewing the person on.

That means a lot of my interviews cover the basics without getting into the real esoteric (my word for the week) aspects of what they do.

It also means I don’t have to do a lot of deep research on the topic, which makes things easier for me (which I like).

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