I really enjoyed being interviewed on Peace FM, (104.1 CHAD FM, Dawson Creek: 94.5 CHET FM, Chetwynd) on Thursday, Feb. 28th. It went from about 12:15 to 12:25, and ten minutes seeemed just about the right amount of time for this one. My only regret is that I wasn’t in a quieter place for it. The radio station called me when I was in a donut shop, and during the lunch hour it tends to be more than ‘a dull roar.’ It’s hard to control the background noise level when you’re in public, but the interviewer, Kevin Berar, said he could hear me just fine. He was very nice, which helped make it even more fun.
I’ve been on the radio several times before, and hosted my high school’s radio program for a while, so I didn’t have the usual stress regarding it. Except now I was talking about my novel, Been Blued, so I was pretty excited. I probably should have talked a little slower…
One tip for radio interviews is to have water handy, so you don’t have to worry about your mouth drying out. Coffee is mostly water. It’s probably better to not take a sip during the interview. Conversation already has the habit of sudden stops and pauses. Radio doesn’t like ‘dead air,’ so no pause should be for long. It doesn’t like choking and coughing, either, so swallow carefully.
You must know your topic. In my case, Kevin, the interviewer, had obviously done his homework. He asked about my inspiration for the novel, where I got my ideas, and how my father passed on a love of science fiction. (My dad was also a big fan of horror stories, but fortunately, that doesn’t seem to have passed on.) Kevin asked about my recent comments on how the publishing industry was in trouble (most books that get published sell a hundred copies or less,) and my preference for self-publishing.
Of course you must mention your brand. If at all possible, tell people where and how they can buy your book–it’s the whole point of getting an interview. Every serious author should create a brand for his or her writing. Pick something: a genre, a series, your own celebrity status… My brand is ScifiAliens, my slogan is ‘putting fun into scifi,’ and my current ‘project’ is the Martian Symbiont series. Each project should build your product line. I expect each of the next few novels after the Martian Symbiont series will be a single project, a novel with no sequel.
For this interview, it was enough to mention that the sequel to Been Blued, Martian Blues, was now available, and that I’m about a third of the way through the third novel in the series. The interviewer asked if I had a title for the third story. I told him I did, but I’m not saying what it is yet. That’s not just hubris, most titles get changed before a book gets into print. I see no point in promoting a working title that may not make it past the editorial evaluation team. In fact, if that happens, people may not buy the book since they were expecting the working title instead.
A special thank you also goes out to Carlyn Koecher, (Sales & Promotion,) who made sure this interview was possible.
(Always remember the people who were good to you! Good advice for life in general, not just for writing.) 🙂
Thanks for reading.
Phyllis K Twombly