Creating a Writer's Press Kit 

 © Judy Bagshaw - All Rights Reserved 

 

 


Once you have your romance novel written, you want people to buy it and read it. And in order to accomplish this, you need to get the word out that it’s available. This is where a well crafted press kit can come in handy. 

Basically with your press kit, you’re providing an overly inundated media with all the information they need to write a story about you, making their job easier. And you’ll want your press kit to be as professional as possible, standing out from the rest. 

Building your press kit doesn’t have to be intimidating. There are some essentials that the media expect, and once you have a handle on those, it’s easy. 

The press release is probably the most important element of your press kit. This is the piece that you will use to grab the media’s attention, and hopefully persuade them to do a story about you and your novel. There is an accepted formula for writing these, as follows: 

  • Begin with the phrase "For Immediate Release". Underneath this write the catchy "hook" that will explain what you are promoting eg., LOCAL AUTHOR TAKES A LARGE LOOK AT LOVE
     

  • Beside the above, put your contact information; name, phone number, email address
     

  • Beneath your hook, draft your headline, something that captures your book in one sentence. Eg.,A.Z.Author has crafted a new twist on the traditional romance, creating a sizzling story featuring a full-figured heroine. Make sure the headline answers the question "why should anyone care?"
     

  • Write one or two paragraphs to back this up. Answer the who? what? when? where? why? questions including biographical information, and essential information about your product (publisher, prices, availability)
     

  • Here’s the hardest part. Keep it brief…to one page is best. A press release must be concise, snappy, and interesting.
     

The biography is the section where you can be open about your accomplishments, abilities, talents and knowledge. Here you can tell how you came to where you are today. What are your credentials? What is it you are promoting at the moment? What is it that makes you special as a romance writer? For me it is the fact that I write romances that feature full-figured heroines. This is a hook that can be used to promote my books. Make sure your biography includes this kind of information. Write the biography in the third person. You’ll find it makes it easier to sing your own praises. As with the press release, however, keep it clear and concise. This is not the time to ramble. 

If you have a particular book you are promoting, provide a page that gives all the pertinent details of that book; title, author, publisher & contact information, ISBN, distributors, number of pages, and price.

A list of good reviews and endorsements would also add credibility to your press kit. 

If you have more than one book available, you might want to create a more "corporate" press kit which includes everything you have to offer. You can highlight the title you are currently promoting in your press release, but have information on your other work within the kit. This gives the media more information to work with in finding an angle for your interview. 

But why should a tv or radio host interview you? The pitch letter should explain this. Its purpose is to explain why the public should listen to you. Perhaps you can talk about ten ways to liven up your love life, or how to feel sexy at any size. Find a way to use your expertise as a romance writer, and sell it. 

Begin with an intriguing lead to introduce your subject. If you’ve done interviews or talks before, include some testimonials or quotes from contacts. In a paragraph, give details about what you can talk about. Finish off with contact information and when you are available. Try to be open to any hour of the day or night, to increase your chances of being interviewed. 

Producers and hosts are extremely busy people. You may be asked (as I was for a daytime TV talk show) to provide a list of questions the interviewer could use. It would be useful to develop a list of five to ten FAQs related to your romance writing that you would like to have asked about your book/s. 

And one final piece of your press kit should be a good picture of yourself. As a romance writer, your picture should reflect this. It would be worth the expense to go to a professional photographer and get some glamour shots taken. If your image says romance, then the media and your reading public will believe in your role as a romance writer. 

 

About the Author: Judy Bagshaw has been published since 2000. Writing romance featuring full-figured heroines, her publishing credits include 4 novels, 1 collection of short stories, and short stories in three anthologies. She was also part of the writing team for the Ginn Reading Series, and Reaching Readers Series, used in many elementary schools. Retired from teaching, she writes full-time from her home in Ontario, Canada. Visit Judy's website: www.judybagshaw.com

 

 

Easy Way to Write Romance - by Rob Parnell