Coffee Problems and Progress

By Nicole Daniel

For this audio/slideshow project, finding an interview subject proved to be extremely difficult. I originally spoke with a woman from the Wandering Goat who told me there was a man I could interview. After assuring me she would call me back, I stopped the search for an interview subject and waited to hear back. After two days I began to worry. I called the coffee shop again and the same woman said she was waiting to talk to that man but she didn’t know when his next shift was. Her laid back and “I couldn’t care less” tone made me realize that it was never going to happen. After she again promised to call me back, I hung up and began calling several coffee shops in the area. Voicemail after voicemail, I really started to freak out. It wasn’t until Sunday afternoon (yes, one day before the project was due) that I received an email from the Eugene Coffee Company. The owner, Sue Harnly, agreed to meet with me the very next day.

Despite the hurtles, my interview with Harnly was one of my favorite and most fun interviews to date. After taking in the environment, I realized it was far too noisy for good audio. Luckily, her car was parked right outside and was a great space with no background noise. What I thought would be a brief 15 minute interview turned into a 30 minute, comfortable conversation.

Taking pictures was a little bit of a challenge due to the lack of customers in the coffee shop during the time of the interview. However, I went back to the shop later in the week and took better photos of customers and the shop itself.

For the editing process, I struggled trying to cut 30 minutes of great information into a two to three minute segment. While there was so much I wanted to include, I had to keep asking myself, “What is the one thing Harnly would want people to know?” After interviewing her, I knew her overall goal of the shop is to make everyone feel welcomed. Focussing on one specific message, as well as some basic information about the coffee, made editing so much easier.

Overall, I am very happy with the final audio/slideshow project. There isn’t anything I would change. Also, after sending Harnly the final product, she responded with great enthusiasm. She told me that out of all the interviews she’s done with journalism students and Eugene newspapers, mine was her absolute favorite and the only one that captured the essence of the shop and what her goal as an owner is. Her feedback was the best response I could have asked for. That alone made the whole project and the struggles worth it.

And in case you were wondering, the woman from the Wandering Goat never called me back.

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