Thursday, March 19, 2015

Press Kits For Authors

As I mentioned yesterday, I'm working on a press kit.  A couple of people have asked me what a press kit is, so I thought I'd write about it!

A press kit is a one-stop shop for the media to find out about you and your books.  (So you're not writing for readers now, your press kit is to convince bloggers, journalists, etc., to take a second look at your work and help you promote it.)  It's convenient for when you are contacting bloggers for a blog tour, or perhaps a radio or TV station is looking at you and your books, then they can click on your press kit and find everything they need. (And it looks really professional for the author to have that available.)

Here is what you should include in a basic press kit for authors:

  • An author photo--provide a high resolution photo of yourself to add a little personal flair to your words.

  • A short bio--something about you that could be used on social media, like a little info blast about three sentences long.

  • A long bio--this one tells a little more about you, your accomplishments, things that let readers get to know you a bit better. A few paragraphs at least.

  • Book covers--provide high-resolution images of your book covers.

  • About the books--give short summaries of your books.

  • Awards and praise for your books--who has endorsed your book?  What awards have you won?

  • Media Appearances--have you appeared on television or radio? Been interviewed by a magazine or newspaper? Tell about that here or provide the video/audio!

  • Interview Questions--you can provide sample interview questions with your answers.  Sort of like a little Q&A with yourself.  Great info for bloggers.

  • Contact information--this is critical to have up-to-date contact info. No one can ask you for interviews if they can't get in touch with you!

And just FYI, most professional press kits are available as a PDF on the author website.

So, that's what I'm working on this week.  I know press kits can be a great marketing tool when they are done right and that's my goal!


Jon Spell said...

Sample Interview questions:

Julie, how can you be such a prolific author of these amazing books AND still take care of 19 kids AND contribute to the global think tank on ways to eliminate hunger, poverty, and of course, illiteracy?

Julie, since this is an online interview only, I have to ask, and please be honest, are you wearing pajama pants right now?

Finally, I know many people share this obsession, but ... what is your favorite Jelly Belly flavor?

Debra Erfert said...

Mr. Spell, just to let you know, Ms. Bellon (pronounce Bull-on) choses to keep her children out of the spotlight while she fights to eliminate hunger and poverty. She understands there's no hope for universal literacy.

Honestly, doesn't everyone wear pj's while they interview?

My favorite Jelly Belly is lemon. What? That wasn't your question.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

*clears throat* Well, Jon, my nineteen kids give me all my story ideas and I'm currently trying to train them in ninja skills for my upcoming novel for authenticity's sake. (And it's very quiet in my house these days.)

That was a think tank? *hides baggie of fish that I brought* Oops.

Actually, I am wearing pajama pants right now. But they are my nicest ones in case someone comes to the door.

As for the Jelly Belly issue, I used to be in the Jelly Belly club, but after I tasted the buttered popcorn flavor, I couldn't eat Jelly Belly's anymore. *shudder*

Thank you so much for the interview! (Although for drama's sake I probably should have thrown the microphone and stomped out or something. I'll work on that.)

Debra, that made me laugh!

Jon Spell said...

Aha, I have spotted you as an impostor, Debra! I am quite the connoisseur (wish I could say I didn't have to look that word up) and there is no "Lemon" flavor of Jelly Belly, there is only "Sunkist Lemon" and "Lemon Drop"
Thought, I would have to say that Lemon is my favorite Starburst flavor.

Julie, you should give juicy pear a shot. It's delicious!

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

I will put that on my bucket list. ;)