Big Goals and Interview Tips
I’ve been hearing a lot lately how we need to set ourselves some crazy goals, to go further than what we thought we could and think outside our little box or blog.
So I set a goal, and maybe I’ve set the timeline too close, but by Mother’s Day next year, I want to interview a specific best-selling author and a very popular blogger. I’m not mentioning names, because it’s just a pipe dream at the moment.
I decided to start interviewing people to work towards this goal .I figured I would start with a few self-published authors and work toward something bigger, but then this opportunity popped up to interview Candy Chand, who co-authored ‘No Greater Love’ with Levi Benkert, published by Tyndale House.
I loved the book, and started thinking about the woman who co-authored it, who had poured in her heart and soul to this book, but whose story was not told, and thought, ‘I want to know more.’
So I googled her name, but I could not find an interview that answered the questions I wanted to ask her, but I did find her e-mail address. So I gathered up my courage and wrote a little e-mail about how I was a young author, with a little, little blog but that I would love to interview her. After all she could only say no, right? Thing is, she said yes, and actually she said it within 5 minutes of my sending her the e-mail.
And so I had my opportunity – but I needed to get ready. And I did. And now, I’d like to share my simple interview steps with you.
1. Choose someone It could be a friend to start with, or you could do something crazy like me and just pick an author and try. Who has inspired you and why? Just e-mail them and ask if you can interview them.
2. Now for the questions. What questions would you like to ask them if you could speak to them face to face? Write them down- just anything you think of, because you can refine it later. If you can’t think of anything, start with the, who, why, what and wheres of life. For instance: How do they write and where? Why did they get involved in the project? How did it start?
3. Refine your questions and put them into sentences; interesting sentences that will draw in your readers to your writing style and not just the answers.
4. Get them proofread and grammar checked. Before you send the questions off to your chosen author, send them to someone else to proofread and check the grammar. I send everything to my Mum, who somehow finds time to proofread it and come back with some coherent constructive criticism, even though she still has 3 kids at home, 18, 5, & 1.
5. Give it a final check. Is there anything else you might want to ask? Do you want an author bio? Do you want to write it or do you want them to?
Here’s another thought: if you want to have a go at interviewing someone but you aren’t quite confident to try someone else, what would you ask yourself in an interview? Draw some information out of yourself that you would not otherwise think to write. I’m seriously thinking about interviewing myself and posting it on my blog, or one of you guys could interview me for yours. There you are, I’m giving you an opportunity to refine some skills.
I hope this has helped you, and inspires you to write something wild that you hadn’t otherwise considered. Seriously, the offer still stands, if you want some practice, come interview me. (You can check out the interview with Candy Chand over at lizzyainsworthbooks.blogspot.com)
Lizzy Gardner Ainsworth is a mummy to 8 month old Erin, wife to Stephen, youth pastor and author from Toowoomba, Australia. She published her first book in October 2012, Dad and Me in PNG, with Creation House. Her and her husband have spent the past 9 months helping Youth With a Mission set up a new base and are currently moving across town to start their own welding and engineering business.
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