Introduction to Genre 3- Interview Based Article

I believe the topic behind my two experiment cycles this far has been trying to understand myself in different spaces and what my identity exactly is as a junior at U of M. For my first two experiences I used genres that required me dissecting my personal experiences through writing. However, for my third experiment I am going in with the goal of writing about the identity discovery experience of a different college student.

I decided the third genre I want to practice is an interview based article. I think I will gain a lot of perspective through understanding the challenges with identity someone else in a very different space is having throughout college. I feel this will give me perspective on my own identity challenges and struggles.

From the article I pasted above I learned that it is very important that interview based articles have a main focus and go beyond just surface information. One of the biggest tips it gives for conducting the interview is that you don’t just write the answers down physically but also utilize a voice recording, so you can utilize every detail when you go back to analyze the interview. It then recommends that after you review your transcript you narrow in on what the focus is of you article and pick the relevant details/information from there.

I think when considering my interview I want someone not involved in similar social organizations on campus. Additionally, I want them to have different challenges in regard to their ethnicity, skin color, sexuality, etc. I am hoping through my interview to discover some identity challenges that I take for granted and never have to think about.

Right now I am not sure who to go about finding this person to interview. There are definitely different pros/cons of knowing who I interview.



An Introduction to Advice Columns

I constantly find myself taking valuable seconds, minutes and hours out of my day to sit down with friends and dissect the complications of our often very privileged college lives. More often than not some version of the same conversation happens twice and I find myself slightly rewording the same spiel over and over again. I absolutely love creative writing and utilizing a genre that loosens up on the tight grammar rules that often come with other types of writing. I also love listening and unpacking peoples problems. To mix these two passions of mine would be to create a college themed advice column. Yes, I will be finding my inner Carrie Bradshaw.

According to the Colombia Journalism Review, advice columns have existed since the 1600s and things that we consider a simple Google search today were once at the hands of advice columnists around the globe. You would think that the power of Google and other search engines has allowed for the power of advice columns to die down, but today they serve a different function. The article quotes: “They are the lightning conductors of social unease. That’s where peoples anxieties, frustrations, addictions, and day-to-day problems are put to rest”. This line really resonated with me because I think that there is so much power in the written word. Society has social constructs regarding what is acceptable to say out loud and bring into conventional conversations but that doesn’t necessarily exist with the written word.



Like we all know… you can find anything online. 

College is a bubble, in an alternative universe, where some really weird, fucked up, even beautiful shit takes place. Yet sometimes we just can’t get ourselves to say those things out loud. I want to bring those topics to the surface through my anonymous advice column.


Marissa Thompson Introduction

Hi everyone, my name is Marissa Thompson and I am a Junior in Julie Babcock’s Minor in Writing Gateway course. My family currently lives in Los Angeles but I grew up in the suburbs of New York City until I was 15 years old. I like to think I’m a genuinely upbeat and positive person, who loves spending time with friends and family. I spend my free time seeking out new music and exploring the outdoors. When I am home in Los Angeles you can usually find me at the beach or in the sun.

I am really excited to be taking this course and exploring this minor because writing has always been an outlet for me. I think naturally my life as a Michigan student doesn’t allow me to self-reflect and use introspection as much as I should. I have found that the English and Writing classes I have taken at this university have provided me with that space and allowed me to not only grow my writing but my self-understanding.

Thanks for reading! 🙂





The picture on my right is home (Pacific Palisades, CA)!