Sometimes you need more than the allotted time to share your story. If the interview exceeds the allotted time (only counting on-air time, excluding set-up and rest breaks), we can continue at $350/hour, rounded to the nearest quarter hour. This is necessary because the long the interview, the more time the project will take to produce. We will provide updates on the time during recording. What Geographical Areas Do You Service?
I can come to you if you are in Southern California. I have since obtained the ability to conduct remote interviews through a video conferencing app. The remote conferencing process is simple and easy, and you only need a stable internet connection and a functioning webcam, either on a laptop or phone.
Can't I Just Do This Myself?
Yes! Anyone can do this. Unfortunately, most people will not. Many people have the desire or intention to interview their parents/grandparents, but life gets in the way. We get distracted by our daily lives, and suddenly it's too late. Tomorrow isn't guaranteed for any of us. While anybody can do this, there is also a steep learning curve. Video editing and transcription is laborious. An advantage of using Eternal Roots is we set a date certain for the interview, we have a process, and we produce a tangible product for your family to cherish. You don't have to become a video production expert. Having said that, if this website inspires you to interview a loved one on your own, good for you! We would love to hear about your experience.
How Much Work Does This Involve?
Each individual case is different, but this is a labor-intensive process in general. Eternal Roots conducts a preliminary interview and background research, acquires photos, drafts an outline, travels to you (Southern California only for now), conducts the interview in person, then uploads the video and photos, edits the video, splices in photos, creates chapters and custom menu screens, burns the requested number of DVDs, uploads the flash drives, and ships them. Transcription into a written book takes longer than all of the above. The entire process can take 10-15 hours, depending on the length of the interview. We have endeavored to create the right price point to provide you with the best value.
Can I Add the Transcript Later?
Of course. If you select the basic video package and later decide to get the written transcript (recommended), we can still produce a transcript for you. Contact us for details.
How Long Does the Process Take?
We are going to provide you with quality product your loved ones will cherish. Given the time-intensive nature of the project, please allow 4-6 weeks for processing.
Is the Entire Interview Scripted?
Yes and no. I will arrive to the interview well-prepared with an outline of questions. Some of the subject matter is asked at every interview, and some is tailored to the client. However, as I learned while conducting witness examinations during my 13 years of practicing law, sometimes the best material comes from unscripted give-and-take. Think of the outline as a tree. The base of the tree and the main branches are the scripted questions. The scripted questions will lead to unexpected subject matter, like tree branches spreading in random directions. I pursue that subject matter wherever it leads, then I will return to the main branches of the tree, the outline.
Where Does the Interview Occur?
Wherever you are the most comfortable. The process cannot work unless you at ease, and your own home is optimal. Wouldn't you rather be in your living room in your favorite chair? This will eliminate outside distractions and conditions that cannot be controlled, and will enable the best possible video and audio recording. However, if there is a particular environment that works better for you, I can accommodate your preference as long as audio and video quality is not compromised.
Can I Hire You to Interview My Parent/Grandparent?
Absolutely. You can hire me to interview you directly, or you can hire me to interview a third party, like a parent or grandparent. The only requirement is that the interview subject sign a consent form in advance of the interview. The consent form must be executed before my travel to the interview.
How Do You Deliver the Recordings?
Videos are uploaded to gorgeous wooden flash drives. For an additional charge, we can mail the copies directly to your loved ones.
Do You Provide Cloud Hosting? Not at this time. You will receive a tangible product in gorgeous, custom-made packaging. While video hosting might become available in the future, it is not in the immediate plans.
Can You Edit/Produce a Video I Took?
As mentioned earlier, anybody can record an interview, but some might be overwhelmed by the editing process. If you have your own digital video recording and are able to transmit the file to us, we can process the video into a flash drive or DVD, and can edit and add photos. Give us a call to discuss.
Can We Acquire Additional Copies at a Later Date?
For a period of one year following the date of the interview, I will maintain an electronic copy of the final edited recording. I will provide additional flash drives or DVD at your request, subject to additional production fees. I cannot promise to maintain interviews more than one year after the interview, but I can provide copies to you if they remain available.
What if I Forgot to Share Something and Want Another Session?
After the interview you might recall an event you forgot to share, or you might have second thoughts about something you declined to share before. I get it. This happened with my own grandfather, and I did a second session with him and created an "Epilogue" chapter. For an additional charge, I can return to you for a supplemental interview.
Will You Provide Me With a Rough Draft Before Production?
While you might desire some degree of editorial control, it simply is not feasible for me to send you a rough draft and then revise. Please let me know within 48 hours of the interview if you want any subject matter stricken, and I will honor your request. We can also set a second session for an additional charge. I will also edit out any lengthy pauses or portions that interrupt the flow of the interview (such as a doorbell).
Can You Conduct an Interview in a Language Other than English?
Right now I am only set up for interviews in English. I am amenable if you want to provide a translator at your own cost, but this will make the video much longer. I can bring a professional Spanish translator for extra cost.