1. BFGuru
    Offline

    BFGuru Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2011
    Messages:
    510
    Likes Received:
    25
    Location:
    Somewhere in insomiaville

    Questions for interview

    Discussion in 'Research' started by BFGuru, Oct 29, 2013.

    I have landed an interview with two people who are just the right age for my characters. I need to work out what I really want to ask them in order to develop my characters. They are about 6 in 1943, which means WW2 and shortly thereafter, still youngsters come Korea. By vietnam the males (and some females I'm guessing) will be of age to enlist/be drafted. So, that being the case, and knowing I will be speaking with others, what sorts of questions should I be asking? So far I have...

    How old were you during each war?

    What was common for you to wear as a child? Did the girls wear shorts and slacks or still only dresses as fashion was changing at this stage.

    What were common games you played on the playground in first grade, 4th/5th grade.

    What were common things to do as a teenager? (not sure I feel comfortable asking strangers about teenage sexuality but I'm just going to assume, it was the 50s and rock and roll was a live).

    If your father was drafted, how did he tell you he was going?

    Did he write home?

    Did you write him?

    How did you feel about this? Where you afraid? Was it a non issue?

    Was he drafted more than once?

    How did your mother handled her spouse being away?

    What did the community do at the return of the soldiers? Was there community at the death of one?

    When old enough for the draft, were you drafted? Was your lover? Where did you?

    Explain the emotions of leaving, of seeing your first bit of combat?

    Where you, your lover or your parent harmed at war?

    What did you/your father/or your lover do as an MO in the military?

    For those left stateside, what did your mother/you do?

    Explain the process of an air raid drill, and what you thought during these sessions.


    O.k. I want this to be fun and not overbearing, but I want the experience behind it. Am I missing any important questions? Anyone here who wants to input answers feel free as well. :)
     
  2. tupbup
    Offline

    tupbup Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    7
    I'd be interested to know how much they understood about war as a child. Was it a non-thing as they were so young when they first experienced it. I'd also be interested to know their opinion on war in general - i.e. necessary self defence or waste of human lives.

    These may not be relevant to your writing of course and it may be a little too personal to ask, I'm not sure. I do like to know people's opinions on things, especially if it differs from my own.
     
  3. BFGuru
    Offline

    BFGuru Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2011
    Messages:
    510
    Likes Received:
    25
    Location:
    Somewhere in insomiaville
    I'm adding the how much did you understand to my list! Thanks!
     
  4. Tara
    Offline

    Tara Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2013
    Messages:
    286
    Likes Received:
    57
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    As the very last question I would ask whether there is still anything they think you need to know. It will possibly give you some interesting details or something you never thought about as important, while it may turn out to have quite a big role in the person's life.

    Of course there is also possible that they will tell you there's nothing else you really need to know, but why would you let the chance to hear something interesting slip? After all it's not like you get to hear stories from people who have lived through a war every day.
     
  5. peachalulu
    Offline

    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,829
    Likes Received:
    2,383
    Location:
    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada
    If you're talking face to face ask to see their photo albums - the interesting details will come a lot easier just by letting them
    talk free-form.
     
    obsidian_cicatrix likes this.
  6. BFGuru
    Offline

    BFGuru Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2011
    Messages:
    510
    Likes Received:
    25
    Location:
    Somewhere in insomiaville
    Great ideas guys. I did just borrow a book "Photographs of the 40's" and it's fascinating.
     
  7. obsidian_cicatrix
    Offline

    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2013
    Messages:
    1,711
    Likes Received:
    1,453
    Location:
    Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Great idea. It could well trigger memories long forgotten.
     

Share This Page