Here's a link to an interview with artist, author and all-around genius Ariel Schrag, which originally appeared on the Lambda Literary Review's website. Now it's running on Slate:
I include it here because the job was a pleasure and I loved Schrag's novel, but also, mainly, to remind writers of the value of good editing. When an interview is conducted via email and through publicists, there's no opportunity to feel your way into a "conversation" with the subject. Thus, my strategy is to throw an entire colander of spaghetti at the wall, asking every single thing I can possibly think of, while making it clear that they can pick and choose or simply dive in at will. The upside of this approach is that it's freeing for me; the downside is that it can be annoying for the subject, and that comes through in the answers they submit.
That happened somewhat with this interview. I asked too much and with lengthy preambles, and the answers that came back occasionally sounded frustrated with what must have appeared to be obtuseness on my part. When I first put the whole thing together it read as if we were having a very elliptical argument. I organized things as best I could, added paragraph breaks and tried to cut anything repetitive, but when I submitted my draft, it still read as a pretty constipated glut of material, so I asked (begged might be more accurate) for a stringent once-over from my editor.
The changes he made were not voluminous or earth-shattering, but gave contours to the cinderblock I submitted. It reads well. The book is well represented, and Schrag's intelligence, humor, and thoughtful replies are better captured. Just saying: It's lovely to have my byline on this, but it's not about me, and most of what's great about it came through hands other than my own.