These are some of the questions Diane was asked. Try to note down her answers.
- Were you worried that sticking with President Nixon during his resignation might hurt your career?
- Could you shed some light on what it was like for you during the infamous Nixon interviews?
- Do you regret not having children and when you were younger was it ever a choice between your career and having a family?
- Do you have regrets about not having children?
- What has been the most remarkable event in your life as a journalist, the one that has made you feel ‘this is why I love being a journalist’?
- What is the weirdest thing you ever had to do to cover a story?
Hi, I’m Belinda Luscombe. I’m an editor-at-large at Time Magazine. And today we have for our 10 questions veteran TV journalist Diane Sawyer. Diane, thank you for doing this. A reader from Chicago would like to know, were you worried that sticking with President Nixon during his resignation might hurt your career?
I didn’t even think of it. No kidding. Not a minute. I guess my reflexes have been trained by my father particularly that you don’t get to be there for the good times with someone and walk away, no matter how the times got bad and who caused them that you don’t walk away.
Quite a lot of people are interested in your time with Nixon and a reader from Portland has a question: Could you shed some light on what it was like for you during the infamous Nixon interviews?
It was not exactly my role as it was. It was certainly not my clothes I wanna go back, I wanna say to Ron Howard, how did you… where did you go, what workshop did go to get some ancient long, pale, loose skirt.
What were you thinking?
Anyway, we all think shallow, right, when somebody’s finally put us on screen, but I thought the movie captured a lot of the mysterious dynamic that you’re always finding out as you go through a series of interviews like this one and by the end of it, you know…
… who knows what we could do. And after it was over, I think the president revealed very little of his feelings about them to any of us who were out there. He often went in a room, closed the door and kept his own counsel.
We got a lot of questions from women, I guess as you’d expect and a lot of them about your career. So, I’ve taken a few. This one is from Florida. Do you regret not having children and when you were younger, was it ever a choice between your career and having a family?
Never that kind of choice. I’ve always thought that’s a curious idea that you, you have more time and therefore you decide to have children. It’s not the way it happened and I think of myself as a life filled with children in my life and intersecting it in a different way. I have stepchildren whom I adore and I think they depend on me some.
You forgive me. I’m hearing regret. Do you have regret about not having children?
No, what you’re hearing I wish I’d met my husband earlier. That would’ve been great. But I love his children with my whole life.
This is a question from Aretta in Boston. What has been the most remarkable event in your life as a journalist, the one that has made you feel ‘this is why I love being a journalist’?
Every day. Pretty much every day. I am glad I have nachos.
No, is it that… is it because of the variety or because of the access or because of the many things you get to do?
It’s because you don’t know what you’re going to learn. You’re surprised every day.
Come on, every day?
Because some days are gonna be like, you know, boring. I just like some pasta and…
… you know, some celebrity got in trouble.
You know, I’m sure it sounds horrible. I’m sure it sounds irredeemably happy and optimistic, but surely this happens every day, but it’s true, it happens every day.
And lastly, what is the weirdest thing you ever had to do to cover a story?
I made my way into the Russian White House in the middle of a coup attempt when Yeltsin was president and no one was being allowed in the building. Everybody was outside and I went up and the guard said women would not be allowed in the building at this point because it was too dangerous and I said I’m not a woman, I’m an American journalist and there was a momentarily perplexed look on his face so he said, ok. It worked. Sometimes a non-sequitur is as good as a strategy.
And then you’re in sound like ‘Well, okay, what do I do now?’
Yes, when we made our way upstairs, I had interviewed Yeltsin once before and we made our way upstairs, completely empty, and tanks were coming around the building if you remember that when Yeltsin comes out and stands on the tank and we made our way upstairs and I have to say he was profoundly shocked, because we were there, the only ones walking into the building and into the room where they were making the decisions about what they’re gonna do. It was amazing. He just looked up and… because he’d heard the reporting around the world assume that soon it was gonna be a kind of cataclysm and they were holed up in there and waiting to be fired on and go down with the building and he just said, tell everyone we’re not dead yet.
Fantastic. Thanks very much Diane.