It used to only be celebrity publicists who would ask for a journalist’s questions up front, prior to an interview with their client. Now it’s everybody.
When I was interviewing celebrities I used to get annoyed about this. I liked the idea of springing an unexpected question that would make them think on their feet – and potentially result in a brilliant line that could be splashed across the page.
I also hated alerting agents and PRs that actually all I really wanted to know was whether they were sleeping with Justin Timberlake or not. Joke. Kind of.
Anyway, like I said, now it’s everybody who wants the questions before the interview. Even if it’s a quick call about a new handbag line, for pete’s sake.
But I’m older and mellower or actually just more realistic these days. Sending questions beforehand saves time and of course gives your client an opportunity to think about their subject – in order to provide a more accurate or in-depth answer, which in turn allows us both to look better. Right?
So these days I’m fine about sending your clients a question preview. I just won’t send you all the questions.