The FAQ page is meant to provide information to the reader either about the author or their works. The information provided is based upon how frequent the question has been asked. The questions that are answered on the FAQ page are those that have been continuously asked. This is information such as how readers can contact the author, what their inspiration was, or what their future works pertain to. This page encapsulates questions about the author, specific series or books, or perhaps even certain characters. Other information that is typically included covers things such as events being held such as signing or upcoming release dates of their newest works.
Although the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ page can be organized in numerous different ways, there tends to be a loose formatting guide that structures the questions into an easily decipherable way. Headings and subheadings were often used to categorize the FAQs based upon their subject. This technique splits the questions and answers into groups that the reader can choose to use to decide what category the question they have is under. This allows for easy navigation of the text for the reader. Other textual features were changed in order to show a change in topic or subject matter. Bold, italicized, and underlined text also worked as a means of dividing the FAQs and signifying their limits. More commonly, the questions were either numbered or listed in bulleted form. This format helps the reader navigate the questions just as well as the textual changes. The numbers or bullets give the text an ordered form for the reader to follow. Interestingly, the text was split up into a list form, and each separate line can be clicked on to expand and show the answer. These hidden text features allow for the reader to skim the questions to find one that interests them, and then once clicking on it, it provides the information without the distraction of other answers being shown. It allows the reader to narrow down and navigate the page.
The information that is provided follows a specific Question and Answer format. The questions is stated, in question form, and is often differentiated from the answer by some sort of bold or italicized text. Then after the question, the answer is given in a short and concise manner that strives to fully answer the question being addressed. I have noticed that the question can be answered in different tones and formality depending on the author. For example, Rick Riordan uses personal pronouns such as “I” and addressed the reader directly using “you”. The answers are most generally personal and familiar that leaves the reader feeling as if the writer was speaking to them alone and was answering them directly. However, there were others, such as James Patterson, whose FAQ was extremely not personable and was answered in third person. The more intimate FAQs in often includes a section in which the writers give advice to aspiring writers that wish to become published. The question is proposed and the author subsequently writes how they became good at writing, tips to getting over writer’s block, and other advice that might be able to encourage an aspiring writer.
Stephen King: http://stephenking.com/faq.html
Rick Riordan: http://rickriordan.com/about/frequently-asked-questions/
James Patterson: http://www.jamespatterson.com/contact-faq
Margaret Atwood: http://margaretatwood.ca/faqs/
George R. R. Martin: http://www.georgerrmartin.com/for-fans/faq/