Hi guys! Today marks the day that Golden by K. M. Robinson releases into the world! Woo hoo! I liked reading the book, so now you can finally order it! There will be links below to any online retailers where you can buy this fabulous book! If you need some convincing, here’s my review and my interview with K. M. She’s come back onto the blog for this wonderful guest post for not only bloggers, but for any avid readers! Author interviews are very very very important to us as bloggers, so being able to interview our favorite authors is a great help for both bloggers and authors! It’s a great way to get to know them better! So if you want to know how to interview authors, K.M.’s got some tips for you!
How to Score A Killer Author Interview: The Art Of Making Your Blog Irresistible To Authors
All Goldilocks wanted was an interview. One simple interview. But Goldilocks played her cards wrong and ended up with no interview and a rather upsetting send off.
Here are 6 steps on how bloggers and booktubers can score a killer interview with their favorite authors with tips from Goldilocks and the Three Bears on the art of making your blog irresistible to authors.
1.) Know Thy Target
Goldilocks ran head first into the bears’ house without checking. She never researched them, she never got the lay of the land. She popped in and hoped for the best.
If Goldilocks had taken the time to properly research the Bears, she might have received a “yes” from them for an interview. If she could have approached them with a clear goal and proven that she took the time to make sure they were a good fit for each other, the Bears would have been far more likely to agree to take time out of their schedule to answer questions.
This means cyber stalking (no, not the creepy kind!)
Smart bloggers and booktubers take the time to go through an author’s website, blog, and social media before reaching out. When they learn more about the author on a personal level, they can make a better connection, which will lead to more interviews.
2.) Befriend Thy Goal
Just knowing about the author you want to work with isn’t always enough. For an extra edge, befriend them.
Had Goldilocks reached out to Baby Bear on Twitter and had a few conversations before showing up for an interview, Baby Bear would have recognized her when she reached out.
This, of course, doesn’t mean you have to have best friend status with the author before contacting them about an interview, but if you can reference a conversation you had, or point out your username so that it clicks in their minds that you are an engaged, talkative, and supportive follower…well, really, would the Bears have chased Goldilocks away if they had known who she was? I think not.
Have conversations with authors (on more than one occasion) before reaching out. When they know you, they trust you…and they’re far more likely to go above and beyond for you because they know you’ve made the effort to support them.
3.) Prove Thy Worth
If Goldilocks had given the Bears a good reason for being in their space, especially if it helped them, they probably would have asked her to sit for some porridge while they chatted. Instead, she had nothing helpful to say when they questioned her and it resulted in her immediate dismissal.
The Bears knew what Goldilocks was getting-an interview that would get people to look at her blog-but she couldn’t tell them why it would help them. After all, a lot of people have them on their blogs.
Bloggers and booktubers who are skilled at getting interviews know this to be fact: when it is a mutually beneficial relationship, with the author getting something out of it too, bloggers are far more likely to get other authors to say yes.
When emailing an author clearly spell out why it’s beneficial to them (and the phrase “it will get you publicity/exposure” does not help your cause.) Tell them why YOU are a good fit for THEM. Make sure your focus is on how you can help them. When you come into a request with the heart of helpfulness and not a focus on you, you’ll do much better.
4.) Bore Not Thy Author
You’ve taken the time to get to know the author and reach out to them, but now you need to keep their attention. Boring them with the same overused questions everyone else has hit them with is not an option.
If Goldilocks had delivered a list of questions that the Bears had never been asked before, don’t you think they would have taken more time to answer…or even given extra bonuses like photos or stories?
Bloggers need to get creative, not only to keep the attention of the author but to get their own blog noticed more.
Think about it: If a reader could go on your blog and find the same questions and answers they could find on Goldilock’s blog, whose blog will they pick? (Answer: Goldilocks, she’s more famous) But, if you only put out questions with answers readers can ONLY find on your blog, your traffic is going to explode because everyone “has to” go to your blog to read those answers.
Pro Tip: Don’t go overboard on questions. Good interviews are about ten questions long…enough to get people’s interest, but not enough to overwhelm the author and take up too much of their time. If you have more than that, break it up into multiple interviews. Do NOT ask authors to pick from a list of possible questions-they have limited time and don’t need the extra work of sorting through a list and picking questions. When you can present them with exactly what they need to accomplish this task for you, they are more likely to do it and do it quickly. Do not approach them with less than five questions, this isn’t going to be worth readers’ time and therefore not likely to help the author. Ideally, ten is a good number (unless you’re talking to the Bears…then it might be three–and remember, not hot, not cold, but just right)
5.) Present Thyself Well
At this point you’ve studied the author, chatted them up on social media, given them reasons why it’s beneficial for them to work with you and created a killer list of questions that demands not only their attention, but the attention of your readers too. But turnabout is fair play.
Everyone knows the Bears are all fancy and famous. Everyone has hit up their social platforms. So Goldilocks knows exactly what she’s getting into, even if she didn’t research them beforehand. The problem is, the Bears don’t, and now they want to look her up before agreeing to anything.
Let’s be real…when they found her crashing in their personal space, she was a bit of a mess–hair tangled in her face, hand in the air, foot sticking off the bed–kind of mess. But had she been poised, with her hair perfectly in place, nails well manicured, and dressed nicely, they would have taken her seriously.
Now that you’ve reached out to an author, they will be looking into you. What will they see? Are your website/blog/social media platforms a wreck?
If you don’t look professional, if you haven’t taken the time to create a high-end-looking website and blog, well-curated social media feed, and overall professional web presence, you will not be taken seriously.
After all, if you haven’t taken the time to invest the effort into your own blogger brand, why would they think you’d take the time to invest into their author brand?
Looks matter. Put the effort in. People, especially authors and your own readers, take notice. Don’t be like Goldilock who has fallen asleep while on her mission. Make the effort. Run a brush through your website…er, hair.
6.) Use Thy Words
When the Bears woke Goldilocks up, she didn’t know what to say. She stumbled over answering their questions and then she ran. They didn’t stop her and she gave up her ability to talk to them. Interview lost.
Had she practiced in advance, or taken the time to write something out, she wouldn’t have faltered.
Knowing what you will say and planning it before you randomly message an author is essential. Don’t fumble over your words. Clearly spell everything out–from introducing yourself (and reminding them who you are) to telling them why you think you’d be a good fit, to delivering your proposition complete with unique interview questions, to following up afterwards–know what you will say.
That way you will sound more professional, communicate more effectively, and show that you can be trusted to work with.
Don’t ever approach, fumble, and run. It didn’t work well for Goldilocks and it won’t work well for you.
With a little time, preparation, and effort, Goldilocks could have scored a killer interview. Instead she was totally unprepared, fell asleep on the job, and never worked in that town again.
Seriously, five minutes on her cell phone and she would have known everything she needed to know about the Bears. Another five and she could have become their friend before she approached them. One more set of five minutes and she could have had the perfect pitch with which to dazzle the Bears. Fun fact: the Bears were looking for interviews. She totally messed up.
But you don’t have to-you’ve totally got this! Here’s how to turn this into a reality:
Day 1: Pick an author you want to work with.
Day 2-4: Stalk their social media and leave them comments.
Day 5-6: Compose an email to them about why you like their work and why it would be beneficial to collaborate on an interview together. Do not send it yet.
Day 7-8: Comes up with a list of 10 unique questions to ask them in interview. Continue to talk to them on social media but don’t bring up an interview yet.
Day 9: Edit your email and questions to make sure it sounds perfect. Have a friend proof read it and make sure it sounds good.
Day 10: Go over all of your website/blog/social media to make sure you look and sound professional.
Day 11: Walk away for one day before coming back to look everything over.
Day 12: One final look-over. Email the author. Continue to socialize on their social media, but do not push about the interview. Wait for them to respond and accept it graciously if they do not.
Now go follow your interview dreams, fabulous bloggers/booktubers, and get out there and do what Goldilocks didn’t and nab that interview with the Bears…er, that author you like. You’ve got this!
About K.M. Robinson
K.M. Robinson is the author of Golden, an entirely different retelling of Goldilocks and the Three Bears where Goldilocks was never naïve, she was sent on a mission and Dov Baer is her new target. One way or the other, she will destroy the Baers.
When the girl with the golden hair betrays everyone, not even she has hope of surviving.
The stories say that Goldilocks was a naïve girl who wandered into a house one day. Those stories were wrong. She was never naïve. It was all a perfectly executed plan to get her into the Baers’ group to destroy them.
Trained by her cousin, Lowell, and handler, Shadoe, Auluria’s mission is to destroy the Baers by getting close to the youngest brother, Dov, his brother and sister-in-law and the leaders of the Baers’ group. When she realizes Dov isn’t as evil as her cousin led her to believe, she must figure out how to play both sides or her deception will cause everyone in her world to burn.
If her allegiances are discovered, either side could destroy her…if the Society doesn’t get her first.
What are your tips to score some great interviews? What were some of your favorite interviews you did on your blog? Comment below your thoughts, and let’s chat!