I started writing my interview questions about a month ago. My only experience writing research interview questions comes from the Fall 2010 semester when it was required for my qualitative research course. I actually enjoy writing these questions, so I don't find it to be a painful process.
When I first drafted the questions, I wrote them in list form to see how I could organize them for a second draft. After getting very helpful feedback from a professor, I found out that the interview protocol must be written in with the interview for the sake of transparency for IRB. So I revised the questions in a more conversational manner. I kept most questions, eliminated some redundant ones, and combined a few of them.
This process also helped me to better organize the length of the interviews. I never planned on interview each participant once, but I didn't know how many I wanted to do. After revising my questions, I found that 3 meetings for interviewing each participant would be sufficient.
If I need to interview participants, I need to get the informed consent. Each IRB explicitly states what must be included in these consent forms. I just started drafting a template for the consent forms, and they're about 5 pages in length. That's a lot of careful reading on the participants' part.
Drafting a consent form also helped me find the gray areas in my research plan in terms of ethics. I hope to stop by the IRB office next week to shed some light on these gray areas. Once that happens, I will have another professor look over my questions and maybe my consent forms. After that and a subsequent revision, I plan to formally apply for IRB...pending an agreement by my potential affiliate.