Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Back Up New Technology with Old (and Check the Plugs!)

So here I am, all set up with my digital audio recorder, telephone pickup, voice-recognition software, memory sticks, laptop, laser leveler, headset with air conditioning and 21 jewels, and all the other gear a modern writer could want.

I spend an hour doing an important telephone interview. It's taken two weeks and a dozen calls to connect with this guy. The interview goes just fine. I get all sorts of enlightening statements and excellent quotes. End of interview. Thank you!

It's not until I hang up that I notice that the phone pickup is plugged into the headphone jack rather than the mic jack. All I've recorded is my side of the interview.

Hopefully, I can catch up with the subject soon enough to make my deadline. And hopefully he'll be willing to spend another hour replicating our conversation. Meanwhile, I'm reminded that there are still a few things that machines can't do.

And, yeah, I really should have made notes! New rule: whenever possible, back up new tech with old tech.

Details, details--the devil's in the details!
Addendum: I've since redone the interview. And I ended up with information that didn't come out first time around.

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