Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A Blog and A Chat

Part Two of My Interview with Irrepressible Radio Host Barry Eva


Dora Machado

In the second part of my interview with Barry Eva, he shares with us the secrets for a successful radio interview and his best tips for authors about to go live on radio. With almost seven hundred shows under his belt, Barry Eva is the host of the popular web radio show A Book and A Chat

Born in Barnet, Hertfordshire, England, he came to the United States in 2000. Barry is also the bestselling author of the YA Novel, Across the Pond, which currently has more than 100 reviews on Amazon. He has also written song parodies and short romance stories, many of which are included in The Bathroom Book of Romance-Book 1.

So pour yourself a cup of tea—English PG Tips is Barry's favorite—and join us for a most enlightening chat.

What are some of the most common challenges that you face when interviewing authors?

No Shows. Sometimes it's due to reasons beyond the guests control, but when they don't read the detailed invite I send out that the time is 6:30PM ET  ("Eastern Time") and they contact you later saying they turned up at 6:30PM and then you find out it was Pacific time . . . .  That's one big pain!

Another challenge is internet visibility. Those that have either limited or out of date visibility on the internet, or when you go to their page loud music starts and there is no way of stopping it … Let's face it if I can't find out about them how can people who might be interested in their books?

I can't imagine any author in this environment not having a solid internet presence. But I guess we come in all kinds, don't we? How can an author contribute to the show's success?

It still amazes me how there are still authors that do not have a presence on the internet. If you do not have a web site—and to be honest these days setting up a basic web site is easy and inexpensive—at least have a blog with your book details.

Minimum should be: a brief bio on the author, synopsis of the book, where it can be purchased, how to contact the author. There needs to be some way of providing more information to follow up an appearance.

What should an author never, ever do while on the air?

Avoid dead air, though your host should help control that. Try not to give away all your secrets and details from the start. Hopefully the host will not just go in with "tell us all about the details of your new book," but rather build up to that during the show. Don't use a speaker phone. And of course don't fall asleep on the phone, especially if you snore.

I've had people chat from restaurant, half way up mountains, stopped at the side of the road (complete with police checking to see if they were ok). I know what children can be like as well as pets, but do try and find a location where you might get a little peace.

And finally, what are your best, top three tips for writers who are about to do radio interviews?

1: Make sure the show is the right format for you.

There are plenty of different show and formats out there for you to appear on. Some have multiple guests appearing in a general discussion type of show, others as with "A Book and a Chat" are one to one.
Some shows are very "Into writing." They go into the literary styles, format, things like that. Dropping the names of authors might come easy to some hosts, as does in some cases using the show just to promote their own books. Others, such as my own show "A Book and a Chat" are a lot more laid back. As I advertise… "Not a literary show, more like... let's sit around have a chat over a cup of tea."

Listen to a few previous shows and make sure the show is a format you will enjoy being part of.

2: Contact the hosts ahead of time and also see if there is anything they want from you.

It's no use in most radio shows contacting the host a week or two before your book comes out and you want to appear. I for one normally book two to three months ahead if not longer. If there is a very interesting late request, I do sometimes try and add an extra show. But as they say on the TV, "Book early to avoid disappointment."

Some hosts require copies of the books before a guest appears on their show.  I don't do that; I would never get a chance to read a fraction of them. However, if I do kindly receive a copy, I will always forward it to a local library, etc. Hey, you never know, and it's another way to help get the guest's name out there.

Ask if the host wants you to read from your book.

Some show hosts provide questions that they will ask during the show. If this is the case, be ready to provide answers and, if possible, interesting answers. I always believe a chuckle or two can only help market your book. If like my own show, the show you are in is freestyle, have a couple of notes about your book and answers to possible questions. A story or two always helps, and don't forget to mention the name of your work as often as possible!

3: On the Day of the show.

Some shows require you to be in a recording studio. In others, like my own, you just dial into a number which the host will supply and chat for however long the show lasts.
 Make sure you have the correct number and time zone! Despite putting this in bold type in my show's instructions, it's amazing how many authors do not read that the show is EST and arrive two or three hours late for the show.

If the show starts to lag—and yes, there are a few hosts out there that seem to struggle with some guests—be prepared to take over a little and perhaps even ask the host a question.
Above all, don't worry. Enjoy yourself. It's your book. Let the world hear how proud you are of it and what a great piece of work you have produced.

During the almost seven hundred shows I've hosted, I've learnt many things, met some wonderful people and laughed a lot. I can honestly say there has only been one show I struggled with, and that was one of the early shows, when I had a guest who had written a book about banking and high finance. I asked him one question and then could not get a word in for the next 25 minutes not understanding half of what my guest was talking about!

Thank you so much for talking to us, Barry.  As always, I enjoyed chatting with you. On behalf of all of MB4 readers, thank you for sharing your best tips with us!

Barry Eva (Storyheart)
Author of "Across the Pond" and "The Bathroom Book of Romance"
Book Site: 
Radio Host of "A Book and a Chat"
Radio Blog: http://abookandachat.blogspot.com
Blog Talk Radio Show:
Owner of "Across The Pond LLC"
Website: http://barryeva.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Book-and-a-Chat/162081553946165
Amazon Reviews:http://tinyurl.com/o7sokp
Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2hn1q0DZ34

Dora Machado is the award-winning author of the epic fantasy Stonewiser series and her newest novel, The Curse Giver, available from Twilight Times Books. She grew up in the Dominican Republic, where she developed a fascination for writing and a taste for Merengue. After a lifetime of straddling such compelling but different worlds, fantasy is a natural fit to her stories. She lives in Florida with her husband and three very opinionated cats.

To learn more about Dora Machado and her novels, visit her website at www.doramachado.com or contact her at Dora@doramachado.com.
For a free excerpt of The Curse Giver, visit  http://twilighttimesbooks.comthingsTheCurseGiver_ch1.html.

1 comment:

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Great post, Dora! You have to get on Kim Smith's radio show now! You ladies would have a blast together!