Creating the Perfect Press Kit for Your Children’s Book
Press kits are often the first impression that someone has of you and your work as an author.
That makes it vitally important that you take the time to create a good one. A great deal of
creativity can be seen in the development of a press kit, but all will have the same basic
components. Press kits used to only be produced in hard copy packets that would be sent to
the media in order to secure an interview, to a company in order to inquire about signing
events, or venues to coordinate a speaking engagement. However, times have changed. While
the press kit is still used in this way, the way in which it is presented and produced has
changed. Most authors’ press kits today are offered in both hard copy and digital format. The
digital format allows for more creativity by way of interaction, embedding of interview
videos, and publicity footage. The following will help walk you through the creation of the
hard copy press kit, with side notes on how to alter it for digital presentation.
A press kit is a fairly lengthy packet of materials, so it is a good idea to provide a short table
of contents for the reader. In most instances, the reader is going to be the customer relations
manager at a bookstore, or a busy event planner, and the ability to quickly find the pages
that are most important is helpful. In the digital version of your press kit, this can actually be
hyperlinked to the content.
Book Summary and Information Page
If you have created a sales sheet, that could also substitute for this page as it will have all of
the same information on it. If you are unfamiliar with what a sales sheet (which is sometimes
called a marketing one-sheet) is then you should also create one of those as part of your
marketing platform. On the book summary page, you will need to include a very nice, high res
picture of your book cover with a short one paragraph summary (think back of the book). The
book page should also include the ordering information such as the official title, ISBN number,
publication date, where it can be ordered from (this is where you can list distributors if you
have them), retail price, page count, and genre. If you’ve ever purchased a book from
Amazon, then scroll down to the book details section. THAT’s what your book summary
information will need to look like.
Book Excerpt Page
Whichever excerpt you include it needs to be able to stand on its own. Most authors include
the first chapter or so, but try not to go beyond 25-50 pages. You can also save trees and
space in your press kit by specifying on your book summary page that a free excerpt is
available via PDF format on your official website (and then give the website URL). The only
downside to this is that the person reviewing your press kit may not want to take the time to
go to the website to read it.
Author’s Bio Page
Hopefully, you already have an author’s bio created. If not, you will need to write one
because it will be in high demand. The longer bio should go in your press kit, but in the Media
section of your press kit you will be able to offer both a long and short version. The bio should
be approximately 200-500 words and should include your name, where you live, what you do
for a living, what you’ve written, why you’ve written it, and a little bit about your
background (anything that ties into the book and is interesting). Contact information should
also go at the bottom of this page, including
• Full Name
• Mailing Address (good to get a special PO Box for this)
• Email address
• Phone number
• URL of your website
• Social media links
• Other contact information and names (agents, publicists, etc…if you have them)
You will also need to include the highest quality headshot that you can afford. 1500×2100
pixels at 300dpi is best. It can be in color or black and white and is really up to you.
This is the section where you make the bookseller’s life easier by already having much of the
work done for him or her. Sales copy to use in their advertisements and announcements,
email campaign letters that they can reuse, press releases, and a list of promotional items
that you have to offer to those who come to the book signing (or event). A good idea is also to
include links to PDF versions of your book cover that they can use for promotional materials,
as well as your headshot, and video if you have it. The digital version of this can have the
links embedded into the content on your page. This allows the reader to immediately click on
the live link and view the content.
Include interview resources in case the press kit is offered to someone from the press, radio,
television, etc. This section would include a series of sample questions and answers. If you’ve
already done a number of online interviews, then it is totally fine to cut and paste some of
those best questions into the document, or for the digital version, link to that content
directly. Limit the list to 10 questions and make sure that they are a good mixture between
questions about the book and questions about you as a person.
This page should be your “ego” page. This is where you are allowed to brag about yourself
and your book’s achievements. Have a few testimonials, reviews from credible review
sources, and any awards or honors you or your book have received. If someone has endorsed
your book, that is also good to mention. For the digital version, you can link to the reviews
directly, and include links to articles or reviews done on you or your book by the media,
including newspaper interviews, magazine profiles, or brochures from conferences where you
were a speaker. Include your events calendar if it is particularly nice, with a link for the
digital version to go directly to your events page on your website.
Want to learn what it takes to become a successful children’s author? Get writing tips, insider info, helpful tutorials and book promotion ideas to get your writing career started. The premise of all Full Cycle Publication works is to spark critical thinking while advocating a love of literature.