What? You want me to do what?

I admit this was my first reaction when my publicist asked me to do some radio talk show interviews. I don’t mind hard work. I don’t mind juggling my day job, family, friends, contacting book bloggers, and writing my own blog posts, while researching, conducting interviews for and working on Book 3. But having to answer someone else’s questions? On air?  Uhh…..

Writers are not used to being in the spotlight. We wonder what they could possibly want to know that would be interesting to anyone. “Just read the book,” we want to say. And better yet, “Buy it first!”

But that’s not how it works, so if you are a writer and actually want to sell your books, you’ll have to step outside your comfort zone and do book fairs, workshops, signings and yes, interviews.

Knowing how busy I am and how reluctant I was to do one, my publicist set my first one up mid-week with a radio host he knew enjoyed interviewing new authors. I didn’t have much time to stress about it. I went to work that morning, drove home, turned on my computer, put my phone in Airport mode and logged into Skype. I toyed with the idea of pouring myself a glass of wine to calm my nerves, but decided I’d rather be coherent than relaxed.

Promptly at 5:10 PM the Skype ‘phone’ rang and a gravely, relaxed voice introduced himself as J. C. Hulsey and welcomed me to his online radio show, Wild West Showdown. He didn’t seem to mind that my books are not westerns, interviewing authors from a variety of genres. He put me at ease and asked some questions I expected, and some that were fresh and fun to answer. His pacing was great – he kept the interview moving, but gave me plenty of time to respond to his questions. Being a naturally curious person, I found myself wanting to ask him about his background, experiences and what led him to create and host a radio talk show, but he kept me on track. Which is more than my husband claims he can do! I tend to ramble if allowed.

Hulsey resides in a Texas town three hours north of Dimebox, a town my grandmother’s father hailed from. The town was “…so small it weren’t no bigger’n a dime box of snuff.”  I named Logan’s cat Dimebox in memory of Papa.

It was such a good experience, I will keep doing them, even if I’d rather write than talk. Radio talk shows increase exposure and sales – but also help you reflect on your writing and marketing, and give you practice in asking the inevitable questions you will get from readers at book signings and book fairs, and the deceptively simple question asked by agents and publishers at writing conferences: “What is your book about?”

Jump on in! The water is fine 🙂