I have probably been interviewed more than 200 times and I have interviewed more than 200 people over the past 12 years. There are specific results you want from an author as well as the results the author wants from the interview.
First of all, the talk show host wants the author to be entertaining and able to banter cleverly well enough to generate interest from their listen audience. There is nothing worse than either a one word answer or one that is three minutes of long drawn out mundane minutia.
However, being clever is not always an author’s forte. So it is vitally important to practice, practice and then practice some more. I typically put my authors through their paces. We will do at least one practice run and then record the interview so they are able to hear what they sound like and help them make the appropriate alternations to their interview content and style until they are able to be entertaining while sounding like they are having fun!
It’s called Edutainment! Plain and simple, the audience wants to be entertained, not lectured. It is also important for the author to question the producer as to whether they host prefers controversy or more of a dialogue style.
Both the author and the host want a good product that will have the listeners calling in and making the advertisers appreciate the exposure they are getting through the show.