I’m Ready For My Close Up! The Importance Of Media Training For Authors

Written for Where Writers Win

“I guess the best advice I ever got or anyone could get for doing an interview was from Jack Paar, who said, ‘Kid, don’t make it an interview. Interviews are boring. Make it a conversation.’” – Dick Cavett

Nothing exposes you more to the public than being an author.

I represented a client who was a high functioning CEO for over 20 years. Then he became an author. You’d think that he would have pretty thick skin – but he felt vulnerable as an author. His fragile ego was exposed.

Going public involves active engagement. A good chunk of that engagement will include media interviews. Perhaps you feel a bit like my CEO /author.

The reality is that if you’re spending time marketing your work, there’s a good chance someone from the media will call you at some point. Reporters find you from blogs, social media presence, other interviews and your calling card, known as your book!

It is a rough ride if you aren’t ready when the media comes calling. One important key to success is self-confidence and that comes with preparation. Without possessing the basic skills of how to both generate and then execute media interviews properly, you can actually do more harm than if you had never tried to market your book in the first place. Media training will give you the needed confidence to make you look and sound like a rock star!

Media Training will:

  • Focus you on WHY your book is unique. People watching, reading, or listening need to be motivated to take action (including visiting your website.)
  • Help you identify ‘talking points’ specific to your book, giving you the tools to articulate them effectively.
  • Give you important tips on looking and sounding professional. If nervousness or confidence are an issue, you will learn methods that help you not only look and sound better, but to feel better during the process.
  • Show you how to control an interview, anticipate questions and stay on message.
  • Help you be seen as an expert on your topic and make the media want you. (fiction or non) Every comment counts so make sure each answer has impact.
  • Show you how to talk in sound bites. The media likes short answers that are to the point, especially on radio and TV. Questions come in rapid-fire fashion and your answers should keep up with the pace. Your answers may end up becoming part of a promotional clip so responses should be confident and clear.
  • Show you how to respond in any interview situation. When you’re a good interview subject, it is quite likely you will be contacted by that reporter again in the future.

Reporters need a lot of sources and they are people, too. Show that you are a great source and you can build a relationship that endures.