It has struck me that having to interview a subject as part of an assignment is something that is not as straight forward as I thought. Interviewing someone for a job is not the same as interviewing a subject that you are then going to use to write up a piece, and in either case, interviewing is something that takes practice to get what you want out of the meeting.
Here are my thoughts on how to approach and conduct an interview with a subject. Note that these are born out of minimal experience interviewing a subject as part of my writing career so pitch in with your criticism and suggestions.
What is the Purpose of the Interview?
Establish what the objective of the interview is to be. Are you interviewing the subject because you are writing about them or will be featuring them in your commission? Are you looking to use the subject’s knowledge and experience to support or counter the position you are taking with your commission?