Making My Interviews Count

I want to start this journal off by saying that I am certain I ended up choosing the right capstone project topic. For those who don’t know, I am creating a blog about women in sports. I, personally, work in sports and wanted to share my experiences as well as other women’s. After interviewing five women, acquiring over three hours worth of audio and transcribing over 12,500 words (yes, it took forever), I am so excited to share the stories of these incredible women who not only work in the sports field but have all influenced me personally in my own endeavors.

So, what’s my “problem” here? I don’t know how to put everything together perfectly so that these women can be understood as being as awesome as they are. How do you help everyone else understand why your role model is your role model or why your hero is your hero?

I originally wanted my blog to focus more on my own experiences with the interviews being supplemental in their own tab, but now I know I want their stories to shine. How do I make sure they do? I have experience transcribing and editing interviews from my internship. I have learned to edit things out and occasionally rearrange a phrase so that it makes more sense to the reader. This past experience will help me, but I still worry that I will have trouble choosing what to keep and what to edit out. With each interview averaging about 40 minutes, I need to cut parts of it out to avoid a lengthy, perhaps not engaging piece. I need to decide what aspects of each interview will tell each person’s story the best.

To help me tell their story, I think I will include a paragraph at the top of each interview that summarizes and gives context for the interview. I have seen other Q&A-formatted pieces online that use this technique. I think this will be helpful to set the reader up with what they need to know about the person before they continue reading.

3 thoughts to “Making My Interviews Count”

  1. Hi Ashley!

    I can totally relate to feeling like you ended up choosing the right project – I had a similar experience of switching around topics. In my original idea interviews were going to be an aspect of it too and I was struggling with figuring out how to include the interviews in a meaningful way. I had the idea to include them as a tab of the site just as you were thinking but, ended up switching topics, so never got much further than that.

    You say you originally wanted your blog to focus on your own experiences but now you want their stories to shine. My question to you, is why can’t you do both? I think in order for the audience to get a sense of why these women are so awesome and serve as role models it would help to hear that from your perspective given how you’ve interacted with them or how they’ve influenced you. I agree that a paragraph at the top to give the reader context will be helpful and this might be a great place to talk about yourself too as a “foreward” of sorts for the interview.

    -Elana

  2. Hi Ashley,

    I am so excited to read your final project! That sounds like something I would read in my free time and I am sure at this school there’s an ample amount of women to interview in this category. I totally understand the feeling you’re having about feeling responsible for telling their story- which is why I ultimately decided to write a fictional piece for my project. My first reaction to you being worried about cutting out too much of their story is that there must be a way to include it without taking away from your experiences. Would it be possible to embed a link into your main essay that includes all of the full transcripts on a totally different page? That way your hard work of transcribing 40 minutes times 5 doesn’t get thrown away.
    It’s great that you already have experience with this and I have no doubt you will find a solution!

  3. Hi Ashley,

    I liked your original project idea, but this definitely feels more ~you~. I, like the rest of the class, and super excited to see how your project turns out. Obviously, I share a soft spot for women in sports so !!!! to this project. I like what Lainey suggested about possibly sharing the transcriptions of the interviews on your website somewhere. I think that would allow people to look further into your project if they want to and engage with the interviews in a different way. I know what you mean about wanting these women to have their full great-ness properly portrayed, and I’m also trying to make sure I do that in my own project but it’s definitely scary.

    In terms of wanting their stories to shine, I think if you make separate pages for each of the women and their experiences, they’d each shine in their own right. I think placing paragraphs for context is a good idea. To piggyback off of Elena, you can definitely shine too, and I think you should have a page about yourself and your experience and essentially let yourself be one of the women in sports. I don’t know if that’s too out of line with what you’d imagined or anything, but I think that’s a possible way to let everyone shine.

    It seems like you weren’t planning on folding this all into one piece, so is making 5 stand-alone pages (or parts, not pages if you prefer) something you’d considered? That’s what it sounds like based off of your post but I just wanted to check. Looking forward to seeing how your project turns out!

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