Lately, I’ve been feeling overwhelmed. With my first book being published in February, I’ve been learning all about marketing and promotion. I now have an amazing publicist named Kimbely Plumley and she’s got a whole shopping list of things for me to do to get ready for my book release.
First off: Angela, my publisher (Brighter Books) and I have been building a press kit. We will send this out to reviewers, distribution companies and anyone else Kimberly thinks needs know about me. Since it’s never too early to start thinking about marketing, I thought I’d share some of the things that go into a good press kit with you.
Who you are: I was amazed at hard it has been for me to write a simple short biography about myself – one that people will actually want to read. Things became better when I realized that a bunch of letters behind my name (something that I don’t have) wasn’t what mattered. I learned it was better to be confident in myself and forthright about my unique life experiences than to mourn my lack of formal education in writing. (I’ve taught mountain boarding, lived on a vineyard in Germany and worked on a big old wooden sailboat.)
Why you write: It’s good to have a powerful place to speak from – a burning passion that drives your words. This is called your platform. It’s something you can build upon when it comes to start speaking out to special interest groups and promoting your work.
What makes you unique: When I say unique, I mean weird. Quirky habits and unusual interests make you memorable and interesting. It’s time to realize that the strange things about you are actually secret weapons in the PR game.
Why you’re uniquely qualified to write your story: What past experiences/education/driving passions make you the best person to write your book?
I found the hardest part in this step of the journey was getting over my own insecurities. Let’s face it, we’re so practised at looking at our flaws that it’s easy to forget our strengths. I actually found it a bit of a hindrance to read other author’s bios for ideas – simply because I’m not them.
So even if you’re not ready to step into the limelight, make sure to start practising. Do it. I mean it.Write out the answers to the questions above, then go to your bathroom mirror and finish up by saying these words:
I’m beautiful, I’m smart, I’m funny… and I’m very very strange.