Bloggers and journalists are usually excited about doing email interviews with musicians, until they get the responses back and realize that the sub-par answers barely communicate anything of interest, much less a useable article.
Don’t let this happen to you.
Pick A Comfortable Setting
“Sent from my iphone” are words that no journalist should ever read at the bottom of your response. Similarly, jotting them down backstage, five minutes before a performance, probably won’t lend to the most creative answers either.
Instead, create a peaceful setting where you can read over the interview questions with no distractions, use your downtime and answer these questions to the best of your ability.
Don’t treat the interview questions like homework, leaving them until the last minute and quickly typing rushed answers on your way to band practice. Take your time, be thoughtful, and express yourself.
One or two sentence answers don’t help anybody. Try to imagine you are having a conversation with the interviewer in person. In fact, if you’ve got the time, maybe even have a bandmate or friend ask the questions and respond to them out loud. If you want to keep things written, then bring your songwriting ability to bear on your answers, offering honesty or intrigue or images.
Learn To Write
If a journalist e-mails you questions, don’t pass the interview off to the member of your band who never graduated from grade school. Make sure whoever’s answering the email interview is a good writer, and an even better communicator.
If nobody in the band is like that, then somebody better learn to write, and quickly. After all, if you’re planning on making a career out of music, this email interview won’t be your last.
Edit, Re-Edit and Edit Some More
Before hitting send, re-read your answers to be sure they make sense and that there are no grammatical errors. Get someone else to double-check your answers as well.
You don’t want the interviewer to have to comb through your sentences, adding words and trying to make out what you had meant to say.
Ultimately, the best thing to do is to try and put yourself in the interviewer’s shoes. Would you rather have one-line answers to your carefully thought-out questions, or answers with thought and depth that form the basis for a kick-ass article?
How do you master your email interviews?