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Guest: Karen Lange – Author Interview Perks

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January 30, 2014 by Jen Cudmore

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Interviews are a great way to add interest to a blog post. They offer a variety of angles for a story or article. Reflecting on the interviews I’ve done, I realized that I’ve gained a lot from the experience. These items top the list:

Authors are Real People – I have long held authors in high regard, and rightly so. They are a talented bunch. But guess what? They are more down to earth than I expected. Fame and writing talent haven’t spoiled them. They experience ups, downs, and everything in between. Knowing this sets me at ease, and makes me realize that with creativity and hard work, our goals are attainable, whether it’s a freelance career or published novel.

Everyone’s Work Habits are Different – There is a common notion that writers must write daily. Not so. Some writers crank out thousands of words each day, but for others, nary a word hits the page until the weekend. There are early morning writers, night owls, and ones who snack on chocolate while hitting the keys mid afternoon. You know what? They all get it done, writing in a way that best suits them. And we can too.

It Expands Horizons – Assembling content for an interview stretches me. It is important to create engaging questions that will draw interesting answers and useful info for readers. Brainstorming and examining the writing industry from various angles helps me assemble info, appreciate different viewpoints, and hence, ask better questions.

Sage Advice – Talk about a walking resource library! These gifted wordsmiths could publish volumes. I’ve gleaned valuable insight on freelancing, research, critique partners, character development, publishing, novel writing, and much more.

Encouragement – The heartfelt thoughts of an experienced writer offer candid and wonderful insight. Quotes like “Persevere even when things aren’t going well,” and “Rejection is not fatal,” ring in my ears for weeks after an interview. Gems like these season my perspective and writing, and encourage me to keep moving forward.

Have you ever used an interview for an article or a blog post? If not, I encourage you to try it. It’s a great experience!

langeKaren Lange is the author of Homeschool Co-ops 101, a freelance writer, and online writing instructor for adults and homeschooled teens. She loves hockey, dark chocolate, and playing with her grandson. Connect with Karen on her  Blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

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37 comments

  1. Hi Jen and Karen –

    I enjoyed this post. We hear so much one-size-fits-all writing advice that it’s refreshing to read a more realistic approach.

    Blessings,
    Susan :)

  2. Karen Lange says:

    Thank you, Jen, for inviting me over today! It’s a pleasure to stop by! :)

  3. And asking better questions makes for a better interview.
    We are all different. And normal. Mostly.
    I think this walking library is all checked out though…
    Good stuff, Karen!

  4. Great to see you two ladies together on this blog… encouragement, we all need it, I always try to share it!

  5. Authors are real people. A little odd but very real. (And I’ve only met one who’d rather lost touch with that reality.)

  6. Ceil says:

    Hi Karen and Jen! I admire Karen very much, and it was a pleasure to come over to meet you too Jen. Double fun!

    I have seen interviews on other blogs, and they really do keep my interest. I love learning about other people and their interests…so I guess that’s why I read them. It certainly is a good way to learn new things too.
    Nice to see you both here :)
    Ceil

  7. Loved this interview. I have a special soft spot for that second item about work habits. Back in the dark ages when I went to school, we were often instructed to turn in an outline for an assigned essay, then a rough draft, THEN the final version.

    I always had to write the entire paper first, then outline it. Then in college I took a course on the writing process (It was required for my minor in writing) and learned that I write the whole thing in my head before I begin to set it down at a screen. It was a real eye-opener.

    • Karen Lange says:

      Thank you Sheila! I had to chuckle about the outline thing – I did the same thing! Had such trouble with outlines as a student. Better now as an adult, but I don’t write them any more than I have too. :)

  8. Perfect timed post! This is one of my favorite types of posts to do! It is rewarding, challenging, interesting and it always stretches me as a writer and a human being to do interviews! I love them. I think I secretly wanted to be a Barbara Walters or something! lol. I actually contacted Sarah Young’s publisher and asked if I could interview her for the blog. I have a list of authors, musicians and others who have agreed to do interviews with me for the blog…so many, I have a long list of To dos to get to! You ladies are inspiring! THanks, Karen and Susan!

    • Karen Lange says:

      Dawn, well, like we said, it’s the great minds think alike thing! :) They stretch me too, and I learn so much. I think the biggest take away I discovered early on was that they are real people. Who knew? Obviously not this silly girl/newbie writer.

  9. and Jen! SOrry, Jen, SUsan R. shared and I thought I was at her blog!!! Forgive my oversight, will you. And thanks for the post!

  10. Great post, Karen and Jen. I love interviews. I enjoy interviewing folks and getting to know them for who they are, beyond the topic of the story. You have some great points.

  11. Becky says:

    Interesting insights. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Susan says:

    Hello Jen and Karen…Nice to read Karen’s post! There is so much we can learn from other writers. It’s nice to be a part of a huge community! We encourage each other and that’s good, too. Thanks for the post! Susan

  13. Great to see Karen featured here. Keep up the good work!

  14. I agree with Karen that interviews are great features on blogs. I always enjoy learning more about authors and their inspiration. Everyone is so different and learning about authors has taught me a lot and opened doors to new ideas. I love to host interviews on my blog- it is so exciting to meet authors and get to chat with them (via emails and interview questions). :)

    Great post, Karen!

  15. Someone told me when I became a full-time freelance writer that I should set regular work hours. 8-5 or something like that. It hasn’t worked like that at all! Most days are just one long blur of working on my novel, writing 8 articles, going to the grocery store, etc. It seems to work for me, though!

  16. Karen Lange says:

    Stephanie, I think we need to find our right fit. It sounds like your have! :)

  17. These are wonderful. I have found the same thing from writers. They are a wise and varied bunch. I’m glad I know many of them.

  18. Boy, if anyone is a walking resource for writers, Karen is! Glad to see her over here. And nice to meet you. :)

  19. *waves* I love these amigo. I knew you’d have an interesting post. Authors are just the best bunch of people in the world! Always willing to help each other out. Thank you for having Karen over, Jen. She’s a special person. :-)

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