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Radio Interviews


The first time I was invited to do a radio interview, I said, "no, thank you." And I didn't do it.

The second time I was invited to do a radio interview, I allowed myself to be talked into it. It was just a 6-minute spot...they gave me questions ahead of time, which I diligently wrote out answers to. I was extremely nervous because there's no do-over in radio. Not live radio, anyway. And of course the interviewer didn't just go down the list of questions. He even dared to ask me questions he hadn't told me he was going to ask me. That's because a good interview (radio or otherwise) is a conversation. It's supposed to sound like people chatting. It's not supposed to sound like one person asking questions and the other person reading prepared answers.

I did manage to get through that first radio interview...and I've lost track of how many I've done since then. Some have been live in the studio; some have been over the phone. They really do get easier over time.

Today I was asked to be on a 60-minute radio program with two other people and I didn't even break a sweat. It didn't occur to me to ask for questions ahead of time. I figured we'd just go on and do it...and we did! (Piece of cake after SOME interviews I've done this year...like back in February!)

This one was fun because it wasn't about me (though the host did mention I was a local author and had just won the Edgar award, which was very nice of him); it was about the Coralville Public Library's teen programs. So I did the interview with the Teen Services Assistant at the library and with one of the more active teens. The time went really fast.

At every break, the host gave the weather forecast, which most of the time he read from a paper on his desk. But I just about burst out laughing after the third break when he started to give the forecast, but instead of reading his paper, he turned and looked out the window and said, "yeah, it looks like it's going to be rainy today." (It probably wouldn't have been cool to laugh on live radio.)

Best thing about doing radio: NO MAKEUP!!!!

Worst thing about doing radio: no do-overs.

But for once in my life, I'm not sure I would've said anything any differently today even if I could go back and do it again.

Thank you, Toastmasters! (Before Toastmasters, I'm not sure I would've willingly done any public speaking I didn't have to do for my career.)


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