Have you ever used an interview to promote a book? A good way to promote yourself, and your fellow author, is to interview another author. If you do it on video, you can also post this on your web sites. It could be posted on YouTube. It could be published in a print or online newspaper. Be sure to talk with the editor in advance to find out what they need from you.
If it’s audio only, you can still post it on your web sites, and YouTube. Get a good photo of the book or author. Or the author with the book.
Just remember that a key part of this interview process is to come up with interesting, applicable questions. If you were being interviewed, what questions would you like to be asked about your work?
Draw your guest out with open-ended questions, not those that can be answered with a yes or no. Always have more questions than you can possibly cover in the allotted time. And be flexible.
Keep the interview short for audio or video. For transcribed interviews, you can go a bit longer. Remember that it will take quite a while to transcribe an audio or video tape, but it can be worth it. If you end up with a seven-minute interview, expect that it will take about half an hour to transcribe.
Edit out the uhs and ums. That’s also true for long pauses and mumbles in an audio or video interview.
Be sure to introduce yourself in the interview before the questions begin:
“Hello, I’m Jane Smith from Talkeetna, Alaska, the author of Frying Moose; A Cook Book. My guest today is Sam Bristol, whose new murder mystery, Blue Ice, has just been released as an eBook. Sam lives in Hope, Alaska, and I met him at a writing class at the University of Alaska last year. His book struck me as one of the best Alaska mysteries I’ve ever read. Sam, is it true that a climb up Denali inspired you to write this murder mystery?”
If you’re members of the same bowling league, be sure you’re taking a friendly but professional stance. Your job is to deliver to the viewer, listener, or reader a truthful and interesting interview. Somewhere along the line, you do want to note how well you know this other writer.
Talk shows on radio and TV have given us an excellent format—no need to re-invent the wheel. Read your guest’s book, and make notes. Ask for a bio or CV from him or her. Maybe something in their work experience will spark a good question. Write down the questions you want to ask. Rehearse your introduction, sign off, and questions. Always give contact and purchase information.
Do more than one take if you need to. People might need to be in front of the camera more than once to relax. But you don’t want your guest’s responses to sound canned, so don’t over-do it.
It’s easier than ever to promote a book with interviews. We look forward to seeing some of yours, so be sure to send us the links, and we’ll let folks know about them.
Keep in touch,
Publication Consultants, book publishers, has established a legacy of providing authors opportunities for expression, preserving histories and stories, and bringing joy to readers and writers; and, doing so in an atmosphere of mutual respect and integrity. If you’ve written a book, if you’re writing a book, if you’re thinking about writing a book, or if you know someone that is writing a book, go to www.publicationconsultants.com.