What if there is very little to no information on the web about your potential Heart? How else might you research them?
Rohan N. asked: What if there is very little, or no information on the web or news articles about your subject, even though it's a story that you feel needs to be heard. How might you go about finding the relevant info you might need? Where do you start looking?
Even a little information can make a huge difference in the experience of your potential Heart, and in your understanding of the story. Any information you can find is good information that provides insight into who this character is, and gives you the opportunity to show them that you value their story.
If you can't find anything about your character through a solid Internet search including news articles and popular social media sites, then start with any information you do have about this person. If you know where they work, try searching their business, or do your research on what their profession is like and what might be a typical day for him or her. Or if there's the possibility for you to practice participant observation, then definitely take that opportunity. For example, if the person is a chef, you could always swing by as a customer on a regular day to try a meal, and actually experience what their environment is like.
We try to research and gather any information we can beforehand to build trust and make the person feel valued, as well as to help us ask better questions, but if there's really, absolutely nothing out there, you can still head into a pre-interview to learn more while being well-prepared with thoughtful questions as well as with a strong 'why' that offers them value.