Ebook Revolution

E-Book Revolution Podcast Episode 15: How To Prepare For A Radio Or TV Author Interview With Bill Thompson

Welcome to the first podcast for 2014!

If the thought of public speaking makes you feel like you’ve swallowed a litre of tequila, then I’m assuming the thought of approaching radio or TV shows to promote your book is the most horrifying thing you could think of short of chopping off your ears and sewing them to a mouse. No one wants to sound the fool, and when you’re not in charge of the questions being asked that can be a very real possibility. Plus, there’s the whole problem of how horrible you sound on tape. Well maybe not you, maybe you’re one of the rare few whose voice sounds like God’s gift to birds, but I know I sound horrible (Or think I do, sometimes listening back to these podcasts is torture). I feel like I’m kind of squeaky, slightly slow and my vocabulary seems to shrink by half. It’s an illusion of course, potentially a kind of jedi- mind-trick to make sure our egos don’t become too inflated, but it still makes those recorded snippets of promotion uncomfortable like you’re trying to swallow a cactus.  

But for an author, particularly a self-published author, audio and video interviews are crucial to your success. Because the best way to ‘sell’ is still ‘face-to-face’ or ‘voice-to-voice’ as the case may be. Words can be misconstrued, but when people listen to you speak they hear the passion you have for your writing and they connect with the emotion in your pitch and tone. Your personality shines through and you become more human to them, more interesting. When I first went searching for opportunities to promote my own book, I realised I wasn’t nearly as prepared as I needed to be to do recorded interviews. So for this podcast I went to an expert, a radio and interviewing veteran with almost twenty years under his cap, and I asked him what was the best way for an author to prepare themselves for an interview. That man is Bill Thompson, and not only does he sound amazing (man I wish I had a voice that smooth – it’s the kind of voice you get up in the middle of the night to listen to) but he had some practical and step-by-step advice to share.

Bill Thompson is the Creator and Host of The Bookcast. A radio journalist by profession, he is currently on the air on a major station in Washington, D.C., and has worked for the Associated Press Radio Network, USA Today SkyRadio, and Voice of America. Since 1985 he has interviewed well over nine thousand authors, including some of the biggest names in contemporary literature. In 2006 the opportunity to go “indie” presented itself and he grabbed it, taking Eye On Books to the web, and creating The Bookcast. Devoted solely to interviews with indie authors, its aim is to introduce readers to these immensely talented writers.

I was lucky enough to be able to do an interview with Bill for my Facebook Comedy novel The Grand Adventures of Madeline Cain which you can listen to here.  It was wonderful to work with such a professional, and I’m so grateful for his further kindness in appearing in this podcast.

In this podcast we discuss:

  • What an author needs to get ready for an interview
  • How to weed out bad speaking habits so you sound like a pro
  • The top three things you need before you approach a station for an interview
  • The mistakes indie authors make when approaching book interviewers
  • What you need to practise and purchase before your interview
  • The importance of knowing how much time you have to answer the questions.
  • The secret to preparing your voice
  • Why you should avoid the sleep inducing ‘monotone’
  • Three big no-noes to avoid
  • What the most important thing an author needs to get across in a three minute interview is
  • Whether interviews are worth your time
  • And much, much more!


At the start of the podcast I also talk about my New Year goals (see the blog post here) and my rather whimsical way of keeping track of my successes, a little jar where I place pieces of paper on which I’ve written my successes as they happen. So at the end of 2014 I can open the jar and remind myself of how far I’ve come. Here’s a picture of it:

That’s all from me this time around, I hope you enjoy!

Hope you enjoy the show! And remember, I love hearing from Listeners and readers so please drop me a line at

emily (at) ebookrevolution (dot) com (dot) au


Emily’s non-fiction book E-Book Revolution: The Ultimate Guide to E-book success is now available at Kobo, Amazon and Bkclb (Australian e-book store). If you enjoy her tongue in cheek style you may also enjoy her comedy novel set in Facebook, The Grand Adventures of Madeline Cain: Photographer Extraordinaire also available from Kobo,Amazon and Bkclb. Thinking of doing your own crowd funding project? Hire Emily’s brain! Emily has successfully conducted her own crowd funding project and interviewed many other authors on the subject, she know exactly what is needed to get a project off the ground. Contact her about it on the above email address.


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