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Yes, You Need a Media Kit.

Here at QSLA, we’re very fond of authors having a presence online, meaning a home base website and then a profile on 1-2 social media channels that best reflect the author and their personality and connects them with their readership.

 

On that home base website where all of the author’s information lives—books, bio, links to other social media channels, perhaps a blog—there also needs to be a media kit section. As a writer reading an agency website, we can only assume that you want to become a published author someday. Once published, you’ve got to promote the heck out of your product. Whether published with a traditional publisher or self-published, you’ve got to pound the pavement to make sure your book gets into the hands of the right readers. A very valuable tool in your publicity arsenal is your author media kit.

 

Alexander Hemus, co-founder Standoutbooks Ltd, created a great breakdown of what needs to be included in your author media kit along with examples of well-assembled author media kits in his post Why having a media kit could increase your press coverage. The essentials according to Alexander?

 

  • Author Bio
  • Professional Author Photo
  • Reviews/Awards
  • Relevancy
  • Press Contact Details
  • Sample Interview Questions
  • Links to Social Media
  • Press Release
  • Information about Events

 

You might not have all of the above at your disposal (press releases and event info, for example), especially if you’re a new author. That’s okay. The key is to provide enough information all in one place so that if reviewers, teachers, librarians, and the like want to contact you they can, and they’ll be well-informed when they do.

 

Make sure you read the full article for all the nitty gritty examples of constructing a short and long bio, the number and types of photos you should procure, and the three final rules Alexander gives for a successful author media kit.

Things to Remember When Self-Editing

Author C.S. Lakin provides ten useful reminders to writers as they progress through crafting their next masterpiece on the website Write to Done. Her advice within her post entitled How To Write Well: 10 Essential Self-Editing Tips goes from the simple “use commas” to the a little more tricky “watch your tenses.” What we really appreciate is that for most of her tips she provides quick and dirty examples to hammer her point home.

 

For example:

 

#8. Ditch extraneous tags when writing dialog.

 

If the reader knows who’s speaking, you don’t need to tell them over and over — especially in a scene with only two characters.

 

Flowery verbs such as quizzed, extrapolated, exclaimed, and interjected, stick out. Instead, use said and asked, with an occasional replied or answered.

 

While reading through piles of submissions, sometimes it’s easier for agents to look for reasons to say no rather than reasons to say yes to a manuscript. There are just so many amazing stories out there and so little time in the day to get to all of them. Taking these self-editing tips to heart and utilizing them for your next story may increase your chances of providing less reasons for agents to pass, allowing the real qualities of your story to shine through.

10 Social Media Tips Authors Should Know

Author Guy Kawasaki gives ten points of action for all authors to take advantage of when using social media in his article Guy Kawasaki’s 10 Social Media Tips for Authors. Now Guy must know a thing or two as he’s amassed 3.8 mil Google+ followers, 286K Facebook subscribers, and 1.2 mil Twitter followers. All of his points are extremely valid, but our favorite is Candy-fy.

 

7. CANDY-FY

Social-media sites are busy places, so people don’t notice all-text posts or posts with small pictures. Every post should include a picture that’s at least 400 to 500 pixels wide or an embedded video from YouTube or Vimeo. Eye candy counts in the constant contest for attention…

He ends his post with a final thought that resembles Nike’s famous tagline. No matter what, you’ve got to get out there and start working it. You can plan and plan, but if you don’t do you won’t build the following i.e. connections that you’re trying to create.

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