Every day, reporters ask interviewees to go deep, to reveal profoundly personal information. Stories about all manner of difficult subject matter: divorce, illness, fraud, war, domestic violence, poverty….
And it’s not just the reporter who’ll hear those stories. Millions of people may hear them. Reporters make what’s private, public. That’s a lot to ask of an interviewee.
Rarely, do reporters turn the mic on themselves to divulge the challenges in their own lives. So, when they do, it’s surprising — and refreshing.
Producer Stephanie Foo aimed a mic her way for an essay on This American Life called “The Favorite.” It’s the first essay she produced for the program. It’s not an easy listen. “The Favorite” is a frank and sometimes disturbing look at how Stephanie was abused by a parent, and the complicated way her extended family responded.
On this HowSound, Stephanie talks about writing “The Favorite” and why she found it personally rewarding to do. She offers a good deal of insight — useful for anyone thinking of turning a mic toward themselves.