The art of asking questions, part II


This week marks the second of two episodes in which five writers and I discuss the art of asking questions. Today, we’ll entertain NY Times best-selling author Jeff Pearlman, Cincinnati Enquirer beat writer Bill Koch and Columbus Dispatch beat writer Bill Rabinowitz (last week, in case you missed it, we spoke with Tampa Bay Times enterprise writer Ben Montgomery and national columnist Gregg Doyel).

With Pearlman, we talk about the John Rocker story, whether Pearlman thinks now he should have given Rocker the chance to take back his controversial comments before he published them in Sports Illustrated, and about his approach to asking the tough questions. Koch, meanwhile, talks about how a daily beat writer approaches the question-asking when he sees the same coach a few times per week and why humor is one way to build a rapport with those he covers (he also tells some fantastic stories about Tennessee coach Butch Jones). Finally, Rabinowitz talks about why sometimes the best question to ask is, well, silence.

And because I replayed Montgomery’s story on Dan Barry and his 2005 NY Times piece about a man saving another person from drowning, here’s the link to that wonderful Barry feature.

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