Sunday, 25 May 2008

Writing Tips - Explaining It Away

"AJ .... Help! I'm doing a radio interview. The presenter has sent me a list of questions and one of them wants me to discuss my story. How do you explain what's going on in your book. I find it difficult to tell people what my story is about. How do you go on?"

This was a question raised quite recently. I'm no expert on radio interviews. I hate being the centre of attention, but talking about your book is fairly essential even to an introvert like me. I have to admit it's difficult getting the idea of a whole book over in just a few words. I always feel I'm underselling my work, but it can be done, it MUST be done. It just needs a bit of thought.

Concentrate on things that interest YOU in the book, what excites you about it.

  • Discuss the opening theme and how it affects the story.
  • Explain about the attitude and moods of the central characters and maybe why they're like they are.
  • Say what conflicts exist between the main protagonists and perhaps what those contrasts mean in terms of the storyline.
  • Tell them of any questions raised. Are the questions resolved at the end or partway through?
  • Explain how many main characters are in the story, and how the characters intertwine.
  • Explain whether the conflict is:- man conflicting with man; man conflicting with nature; or man conflicting with himself (read woman for man).
With a little preparation it's surprising what you can come up with.
Keep on writing.