Monday, November 7, 2011

Conducting author interviews

Did everyone have an awesome Halloween? I did. I carved my pumpkin in the shape of John Lennon's self-portrait.

With my book's blog tour coming up at the end of November and going on through December, I've been introduced to the world of writing guest posts and answering interview questions. After doing so many, I've developed one good piece of advice for anyone performing author interviews:

Do your homework and be creative.

An author doing ten, fifteen interviews in a row will grow weary when every interview feels like a mirror of the rest. The same questions crop up again and again. Personally, my eyes start to cross and my brain hurts from trying to come up with ten different ways to answer the same question, until I'm eyeing the unanswered interviews still waiting in my inbox like this:

To be fair, I expected some of my questions to be the same because I'm doing them for a blog tour. These are blogs doing me an immense favor by giving me a spotlight on their blog for a day, so not all of them might have a chance to read my book beforehand. Still, it's really exciting when I get questions I know are meant specifically for me.

(Obviously, some questions are going to get repeated. 'Who are you, what's your book about?' That goes without saying.)

When conducting an interview, you can make an author's life a lot more enjoyable by really doing your homework. Obviously, it helps to have read their book(s) so you can tailor specific questions on characters/plot. It also helps to read the author's bio and learn a little about them, where they come from, and what their hobbies are. One of the most amazing questions I've gotten to answer was the result of the interviewer reading my bio and plucking info out of it to ask me questions and they were brilliant.

Most of all, be creative. Give your interview something fun and flavorful that no one will find from an interview anywhere else.


  1. Hardest question to answer: How do you come up with your story ideas?
    I don't know!! lol - it's such a broad, formulaic question, and there's no easy way to answer it when it comes to fiction and imagination. I could write pages about how the ideas formed and the process I went through, but that would be terribly boring for the reader.
    I like questions that get specific. :)

  2. Good post. Thanks. I feel like the pressure is on now. I have an interview in Dec. LOL!

  3. Great advice for bloggers. We want you to like us, not view our questions with dread!

  4. Kris, oh, we do! I think interviews are a blast. But they're definitely a lot more fun when interviewers get really creative. ;)