Thursday, February 24, 2011
"No Interviews, Please": A Guest Post by Stephen Brayton
Please join me today in welcoming Echelon Press author Stephen Brayton to The Fascination Files. His novel NIGHT SHADOWS debuted on February 15th, and since Stephen in now in the full court PR press, his words on interviews are quite appropriate.
No Interviews, Please
A while ago, one of my friends directed me to a particular blog where an author conceded to do a guest post. He started by saying how he didn't grant interviews anymore because he'd become successful enough to not want to do them and didn't want to answer the same questions asked so many times in previous interviews. He went on to defend his position and argue against his being forgotten by the public, then proceeded to give an interesting discussion regarding brick and mortar stores and tangible books, and eBooks. How he would still succeed in regards to competition with the 'big name' authors.
As I say, I found his discussion credible, but everything branched from his opening statements about not doing further interviews but how he made an exception to write this particular guest blog.
I read the post and made a few comments, including how saddened I felt to see an author refuse to give interviews. Now before everybody jumps all over me with arguments, let me explain my views. I may be a newly published author and learning the ropes of publishing and marketing. I'm sure some of the 'big name' authors shy away from interviews and, yes, they are in a position to pick and choose. To each his own.
As frequent readers of my blog know, I have posted a series of author interviews. In 2009 and 2010, I contacted many authors, beginning with the Echelon Press authors, introduced myself, and asked if they would mind answering a few questions for the series Around the Globe With... Yes, some of the questions are ones others have asked, although I have tried to be light-hearted and humorous. All but one author (not from Echelon Press) agreed and sent me their answers. I've put them in a folder and have pulled them out from time to time and posted them.
I felt, as a new author and editor for Echelon Press, I wanted to do my part to promote authors and their books. I mentioned I wanted to start with Echelon Press authors because it seemed only natural to first help my company succeed in my own little way. Except for a few exceptions, I'm working my way through those from EP, then I'll post others'.
In my promoting of NIGHT SHADOWS, I sought out various blogs and author sites, introduced myself, and requested consideration for a guest blog or interview. I was allowed to appear on many sites and let me tell you, I felt honored with each one. Was I asked some standard questions? Sure. But I took the time to answer each of them a little differently than the previous. I sincerely thank every author or blogger who accepted my interviews and guest blogs. On the dates my interviews were posted, I promoted that particular author's site. I thank every single person who bought my book and who are looking forward to Beta, available in July.
I never want to forget my friends, family, and fans, because you are why I succeed. I can write the best novel in the world, and I can somehow get a publisher to accept it, but if nobody buys it, what was the point of it all?
Am I looking for a little ego stroking, a bunch of compliments, and possibly some women giving me their phone numbers? Of course. But I will always be grateful.
Sure, I dream of being a 'big name' author one day. I would love to be successful enough to pick and choose my interviews and appearances, but I hope I never reach a time where I'm jaded enough to refuse to give an autograph to a fan, don't take a few moments to talk to the people who buy my books, or reject an interview question because it's been asked of me scores of times. People want to know my answer, that's why they ask. New writers crop up all the time and they're looking for guidance. There are vast numbers of potential fans I have yet to reach.
If I ever do fall into that mind set where I'm refusing to grant interviews or someone thinks I'm acting condescending because someone fires an oft asked question at me, or I push someone away from an autograph because I don't feel like giving one, then I grant permission for that person to smack me upside the head (gently, please, I bruise easily) and remind me of this post.
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