Jerry D. Simmons -
Author, Publisher, Speaker
INDI Publishing Group
Creating Opportunities for Writers
Author of What Every Writer Needs to Know About Publishing
Also available as an eBook
Preparing Writers for Success
Introducing Emerging Writers to a Global Audience
The Author's Press Kit - What is it? Do I need one? -
By Carole Barnes
An author's press kit (also known as a media kit or a promo kit) is a package of information about you.... the author. Often authors are asked to provide details about themselves and their work to members of the press, their publishers, or potential clients. A press kit is a simple tool for handling this request quickly and efficiently. A press kit is a great, cost-effective way to generate exposure for you and your business. If you don't already have one then it may be time to consider one.
A well prepared press kit is an all-in-one package that summarizes you as an author and all of your professional information. It allows you to have pertinent information about your books, biographical information, activities, achievements and press coverage at your fingertips whenever needed. It can be as simple or as elaborate as you like, with its main purpose being to pull together all your information and make a good solid first impression.
The most important element of your press kit is its professional appearance and packaging. A press kit is used to promote you, your products and your business, as well as providing your contact and ordering information.
So, what's actually in the Press Kit?
The contents can vary, depending on the intended purpose and/or audience, but in general, a press kit contains the following:
1. A brief biography - a one page summary about you, what you do and what makes you unique. This is a good place to insert your contact information and a photo of you.
2. If you are promoting your current book, your press kit will include a summary, title, publisher, publication date, synopsis, and a picture of the book's cover. This is a great place to add reviews about the book, as well as an order form.
3. If you wish to promote your general writing services, a list of what you've done for others in the past and some testimonial comments from satisfied clients can be added.
4. Reprints of newspaper and magazine articles, printouts from websites and references to TV and radio shows where you have been mentioned. Articles and media exposure lend tremendous credibility.
5. All awards and citations you have received.
6. A list of all your works, including where and when they were published.
7. Previous book signing photos as well as mention of any upcoming signings.
8. Of course you'll need something to put it in so it all stays together - a professional folder with your photo or logo on the cover.
With all of your information put together in an attractive, professional kit, you'll have a cohesive, convenient, and centralized marketing package. This packet will clearly communicate all the key facts about you, your work and achievements. The best part is that it will be ready to distribute at any time, with the goal, of course, of attracting future business and interest.
In these hard economic times, if an agent/publisher requests a summary of your information, it makes sense to have a showcase of your work ready to send out or take with you. A press kit can be handed to anyone... TV executives, agents, publishers, reviewers, etc., and can also be used to introduce yourself to prospective bookstores.
Press kits can be as simple as a one page summary of you and your work, or as detailed as you like. The best part is you can customize your kit for any occasion. Your can get online examples and do your own press kit, or have it done professionally, whichever is your preference.
Please feel free to contact me if you would like help developing a professional press kit specifically for you and your needs!