Saturday, October 29, 2011

Saturday Discussions: Popping the Question

This week is a bit more of an advice post but I'd still love to hear your thoughts on the subject. I want to talk about popping the question. No, not the marriage question, sillies! I'm talking about contacting an author. I know that a lot of people, especially when they are just starting out, feel a little nervous about approaching an author. Heck, I felt nervous!

And why is that?

Well, for me, it's because I felt like I knew some part of them by reading the story they'd dreamed up. They gave me a piece of them and here I am, asking to talk to them when they nothing about me!

The truth is, (and this is a biggie) authors are just people too. They just get to share the voices in their head with you! Nine out of ten times, you're going to find that the author is just as excited to be getting an email from you as you are emailing them!

But what should you do?

I'm no authority on the subject but I'll tell you how I approach it.

First, find the author's website and make sure they accept author interviews. If they do, find their email and prepare to type!

My number 1 rule is to be professional. After all, you are representing your blog (you know, the one that you worked so hard to build from the ground up with awesome reviews, interesting articles and fun giveaways) so you don't want to come off rude or unprofessional.

Generally speaking, I'll tell the author a little something about my appreciation for their novel and point them in the direction of my review (though this is only if they are good). For me, this is never a problem because I always read the novel first to make sure I'm wild about the book before I agree to interview the author. I'll usually put a quote from my review or express that I'd just finished the novel and really enjoyed (add specific detail here).

After that, I'll simply extend an invitation by saying something like "I'd love to interview for my blog (blog name here)". I'll also express that I understand if time doesn't allow them too and thank them for their time.

That's it! That's all I do. It really is that simple. I try to keep it short and to the point because I know that they are busy people, I'm a busy person and I don't want to bombard them with paragraph after paragraph of nothing.

Sometimes, an author might not respond because they are busy or they forget or your email gets lost. If that happens, hey, at least you tried! But more times than not, the author will respond and tell you yes or give you an I-owe-you and a better time to ask. I have a few of those out now. *I'm looking at the magical Michelle Hodkin*

So that's it. The quick list:

1) Be professional
2) Be short and to the point
3) Be polite
4) Provide links to your blog
5) Respond in a timely manner

No magic spells or super secret potions involved.  Hope this helped.

Other bloggers, what do you do? Anything different?

New bloggers, do you have any questions?


  1. I just go to their websites and straight up ask esp if it says they like to hear from their fans :) Of course, most of the authors I've asked to interview are not as well-known like YA authors of right now, but so far, I haven't had anyone say no.

  2. Thank you, that is really good helpful advise. I have been nervous about this and haven't done it as yet, but I would like to do it on my blog as it would be good to have an interview here and there as well as reviews.

  3. As an author myself, I actually love it when someone approaches me about my work. Whether it's to tell me they liked the book (yay for ego stoking) or hated it (which is still useful feedback so I don't make the same errors in the next book), or even to ask questions about the world/characters/plot, I find it absolutely humbling that someone would take time out of their lives to think of me.

    Last year at the RT conference, for the first time ever, I had someone come seek out my signing table to tell me how much they enjoyed my book. I almost started crying, I was so touched!

    So this is me, saying please contact me any time you'd like!



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