Telephone your interviewee and have a general chat to find out a little bit about them.
Introduce yourself and give your prospective interviewee as much information as possible. Explain clearly who you are working for, what your oral history project is about, the outcomes of the project i.e. the interviews are being collected for an archive/to go online./to be part of research for a piece of writing/research for a play/film/television documentary/drama.
You need avoid doing the interview on the phone, you just want to establish if you think they have something to contribute and will be a good interviewee. Let them know that you will come to their home to interview them and arrange for a mutually convenient time.
I have never had any problems, but you should let somebody else know where you are and going and when.
Check your equipment before you go. Test the digital recorder, check the batteries and main lead, check the external mic if you are using one, and the headphones.
Logging and archiving the interview
Copy the interview onto a computer via the USB lead. Back this copy up onto an external hard drive or make a CD copy.
Logg the content of the interview. i.e. write chronological notes of the content of the interview.
Write a short synopsis – i.e. “XXXXX came to the UK in the 1950s, in this interview he speaks about his life in the UK. He recalls the Bristol Bus Boycott but was not directly involved. He talks about his work and family. He refers to specific incidents and speaks about his experience of racism and his feelings about living in the UK.”