The Foolproof Guide to Getting the Interview
Hi there! *waves emphatically* No, hey! Wait! Don’t run away! Look, honestly, you get a little too enthusiastic about getting a quote one time, and suddenly people think you’re the Monocerous or something...
Anyway. Steph22_1, Investigative Reporter here. I make it a point to get the hard facts about the goings on of Neopia, and I’m here to teach you, young Ruki, how to get the perfect interview.
“But wait... I’m not a Ruki!”
It’s a figure of speech. Just don’t ask me to name anyone who actually uses it.
The fact of the matter is this: You don’t need to be a famous Neopian to get an interview with some of the big names in Neopian society. I hear even what’s-his-name, you know, the one with the this-and-the-that, tried for three years to get an interview with the Snowager. He never did get that interview. Why, you ask?
Easy! He never read this article!
“Well, who have you interviewed?”
Stop being cheeky. Skarl hasn’t answered my neomails yet. He’s a busy guy. And yeah, okay, when I saw him on Neoquest II the other day, he climbed out a window and made a run for it. But he was obviously planning that all along.
Anyway, the point is, even the novice NT writer can get an interview. Just ask Talula_babbage3848585 the striped Acara,* who completed my five-step program last month!
“HELP! I’m being held against my will! SEND THE DEFENDERS OF NEOPIA! SEND AN AMATEUR EYRIE IN A CAPE! SEND ANYBODY!”
Eh hem, yes, thank you, Talula_.
Now, where was I? Ah, yes, I was about to introduce you to my five-step program!
Five Steps to Effective Interviewing:
Step 1. Start out small. Interview your pet’s Skidget. You’ll probably have to have its petpet translate... and then read a Petpet-to-Insert-Your-Language-Here Dictionary. It will give you greater insight into another key element of article writing: Research. Furthermore, you can break the proverbial ice with Neopian Times readers with an insightful look into the life of one of Neopia’s most ignored citizens: the petpetpet.
Step 2. If you survive step 1 with sanity intact... Congratulations! Celebrate! Buy a round at the Coffee Shoppe of one of their fantastic beverages. Chat up the shopkeeper. Charm her with your insight about artsy things that belong at the Art Centre, like... Slorg Poetry. Don’t let on that you’re confused about whether “Slorg Poetry” is poetry written by Slorgs or poetry written about Slorgs. And if there happens to be no such thing, laugh it off like you were making a hilariously funny joke. After that, be sure to tell her I sent you, and would be just thrilled if she would grant me a teensy little interview, dropping hints periodically about how much business a shiny NT article could bring her.
Step 3. Now that you’re filled up on Purplum Mocha and Tigersquash Ice Cream, it’s time to head out to interview, say, Dr. Sloth, right?
First of all, no one’s been able to get an interview with Sloth since the last guy who tried mentioned that he was good friends with the Space Faerie. Secondly, you can’t just jump right in! I mean, sure, you did fine work with that piece on the Skidget, but you’re barely a blip on the NT reader’s radar.
If you really want to get a good interview, try the games. The folks on those are too often ignored when it comes writing those hard hitting news articles. They have a lot to say, too! Just be sensible about who you try and interview. The Buzzer Game Techo, for instance, probably isn’t a good idea if you’re trying to get a high score. Too much chatting, not enough concentrating, that sort of thing. Also, remember, folks, Adee is a busy Chia. She’s got the toughest job in the Games Room, running all over the place, avoiding those ice cream scoops. I mean, really, it doesn’t get much tougher than having to avoid ice cream.
I suggest trying for someone in a game that takes a lot time. Rohane, for instance, doesn’t really do much. I’m sure he’d be happy to answer your questions, especially if you promise your article is going to put him in a heroic light.
Please Note: Lying and generally making things up is a completely unethical Journalistic practice.
Step 4. Now that you’ve got some experience under your belt, it’s time to go out and find that big interview. I suggest going for the Neopians that, while well-known and highly respected around Neopia, are almost never interviewed. Everyone’s vying for an Illusen exclusive. Even top-notch interview guide writers have trouble getting her word on anything. Save the big guys (and gals) for when you’re in the big time.
Step 5. Remember, no matter how famous an NT writer you become, there is no such thing as an article that is “too small.” Don’t be afraid to write that expose on the Beauty Contest, or a How-To on making your neohome more environmentally friendly. An article’s chief purpose is to inform, not to get an exclusive interview with the greatest Neopians of all time... even though it’s your life’s dream... and really, just one little interview never hurt anyone, right?
Eh hem. Sorry, I digress.
The point is, no matter how far you make it as NT writer, it is most important that you take pride in your work, and that you enjoy the process.
Further Tips on Getting Interviews:
1. Don’t beg. Just like you wouldn’t beg for items or neopoints, don’t beg for an interview. If your intended interviewee says no once, twice, 3.7 million times... back off. Give them space. They’ll respect your professionalism.
If that doesn’t work, tantrums usually get people’s attention. And nine times out of ten, that sort of embarrassing display remains confidential between you and the person you are interviewing, provided you dig up equally embarrassing dirt on them.
2. Be respectful. Remember that these are busy people, and they are really doing you a favor by answering your questions. Even if you don’t particularly like the person you’re interviewing, or think you could be doing so much better, be kind and respectful. Yes, even to certain white Blumaroos who wear weird armor, are hopeless at battling, who say things like “We emerge victorious!” Even them.
3. Be extra careful when interviewing villains. They might look vaguely similar to your fuzzy, happy neopet... but don’t tell them that.
There. Now that you have successfully completed my five step program, you are ready to go out there and report those stories, just like Talula_Babbage3848585.
“HELP! SOMEBODY HELP ME!”
Er... well, she still needs some remedial help. But as for you, my young Ruki, go forth now and report!
*Note: Name has been changed at request of Ms. Babbage3848585.