Smashwords Creates Interviews for Authors

Smashwords Interviews with AuthorsSmashwords just added an author interview feature to their platform. Now every author can have a detailed questionnaire on their author profile page at the ebook retailer. You can use their questions or come up with your own. It’s a great way for readers to learn more about you. It’s fun, I just did one here.

Read the entire announcement on the Smashwords blog or the how-to’s below:

Creating an interview is fun and easy.  Here’s how to get started:

  1. Sign in to your account, click to the Account tab, and then you’ll see the link for Create or edit your interview. Study the instructions for tips, and then jump in by clicking Proceed to Your Interview! at the bottom of the page.
  2. We’ll present you with a series of questions to get your creative juices flowing.  Feel free to edit our questions, or create your own.  Make your interview unique!  Show off your personality and your writing.
  3. Click Save and Show Next Question to answer the next question
  4. When you’re done, click Preview and Publish. From this page, you can use the up/down arrow to rearrange the order of the questions.  You can also click to edit any question or answer.
  5. Promote your interview! Share it on social media, and encourage your fans to share it too.

The same picture you use for your author profile will appear on your Smashwords Interview page.

Good idea? Definitely something Amazon hasn’t done yet. What do you think?

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5 Responses to “Smashwords Creates Interviews for Authors”

  1. Catana Says:

    I don’t really see the point. Profiles have always been editable, and I would assume that any writer who wanted to provide personal information about themselves has probably done so already. I haven’t read the details about this new feature, but if, as you say, the interview exists on its own page, why would readers be expected to click to a second page? That expectation goes against what’s been proved to be normal behavior, which is that most people can’t be bothered with more than one click.

    I may be carrying my objection too far, but it’s easy to see this as an extension of the narcissism that seems to be taking over the internet. “It’s all about me.” For some reason (not the least influential is the net’s fascination with gossip), we writers are becoming unwilling to let our work speak for itself. We have to talk about our pets and how many hours we spend writing, and who or what inspired our books. Maybe this is important to rabid fans (and how many of us actually have any?), but it’s unlikely to attract new readers.

    • Jason Matthews Says:

      I agree. I think your points are perfectly valid, Catana, and probably the exact case with 98% of the readers who might investigate us at Smashwords. But if there is a 2% out there who find this a nice feature, then my feeling is it’s worth the 10 minutes it takes to fill one out.

      • Catana Says:

        Good point, if the possible 2% is important to a writer. Still, I’d guess the odds are more akin to buying a lottery ticket, less than 1%.

  2. MarquitaHerald (@MarquitaHerald) Says:

    Thanks for this Jason, I’ll be sure to share this with the followers of my author blog. The comment exchange here is equally interesting. Recently I came across a comment by someone who described himself as an author who said “I just don’t buy into the whole author profile thing. To me this is the worst kind of bragging and I just refuse to do it.” All I could think of was how I wished I could ask the guy how that approach was working out for him in terms of book sales and followers. Every author has to follow their own conscious when it comes to self promotion, but if anyone doubts readers aren’t interested all they have to do is take a look at bestselling authors James Rollins and Ann Rice who are both active participants in social media and seem to have no problem with transparency. I think it’s easy to criticize, far more difficult to risk vulnerability.

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