When I first started One Plus One in July 2010, I wondered why people would want to subject themselves to some quite personal questions. But you see, I really wanted to know the answers! I found the more I challenged myself with braver questions, the more generous the guest’s response.
I’ve said it before but it was veteran Channel Nine journalist Peter Harvey who I credit with first giving me ‘permission’ to ask deeper questions about his mortality. Peter died of pancreatic cancer in 2013. During our interview, he would finish a sentence, just before he finished a thought so that I would have to follow up with another question.
I regard this as a gift he gave me. And since that time, I've been given it over and over again.
Some things that delight me about interviewing:
- having my research challenged or improved
- when the guest reveals a surprising nugget of information
- unexpected emotion (me and/or the guest)
- forgetting I am recording an interview in a TV studio
What frustrates me?
- I can get tongue-tied. I don’t have the gift of the gab.
- After hundreds of interviews, I can’t predict what the audience will or won’t like
- I’d like more (constructive) professional feedback
- Many guests have had a poor start in life. This saddens me.
What motivates me?
- Discovering amazing people who have never been interviewed
- Finding and sharing human vulnerability
- Constanly learning about different pathways people use in their lives