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Questions to Ask Yourself
1. Is the quote interesting?
Avoid quotes that are simply statistics listed between quotation marks. These
could be easily paraphrased or omitted, but as a quotation, usually add little to
2. Does this quote add to the story?
Just because an interviewee says something does not mean that it needs to be
printed. Not everything that your subject says will be pertinent, and you have to
keep a good balance of writing and quotation in your article.
3. Is this quote in context? Have I placed it in the article misleadingly?
Taken out of context, many quotes lose their original intent, and can be
damaging to a person’s character. Make sure that each quote makes sense
where you put it, and can’t be misconstrued because of the information you’ve
placed around it.
4. Is this a complete quote?
Partial quotes can be just as misleading, as well as potentially confusing. Try to
use complete quotes when you can. Obviously, this doesn’t mean that you have
to include entire paragraphs just the sentence or thought.
5. Is this quote punctuated correctly?
Though this falls under grammar, it also can confuse the intent behind a quote
made by your interviewee.
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