I can't believe it's been a month already… time is just flying by this year and I can't seem to keep up. So much is happening! I've had a crazy and busy week and I almost decided not to go to this NM Book Co-Op meeting, but then I remembered the topic of discussion: Book Sell Sheets.
I'd never even heard of a sell sheet for books until last month's meeting—and the timing turned out to be perfect for me since I ended up needing one for my own book—the very next day. But I had no idea what I was doing when I put that together and I wanted to find out more.
I have to admit, I was a bit late to the luncheon… I basically skipped the lunch part and arrived just as the talk was starting. This time the entire room was given a chance to introduce themselves and their books (if they had one). Then the guest speaker was introduced: John Hoffsis of Treasure House Books & Gifts, on the Old Town Plaza…
So, what is a sell sheet? It's basically a calling card for your book—a sheet of paper with the right facts and details about your book that you can hand to someone: a buyer at a bookstore, a librarian, book reviewers, or any potential buyer of your book (you know, unless you can actually put a book in their hands, it's best to have something to leave behind).
|Example: single page (picture book!)|
|Example: two-sided page|
Here's what you need your book sell sheets:
- Book Title, Author's name, Illustrator's name (if applicable)
- Publication Date (this is mainly for pre-orders, if your isn't out yet)
- ISBN, Page Count, Hardcover or paperback, and dimensions
- A PICTURE OF THE BOOK (not overwhelming, but definitely the focus of the page)
- Synopsis of the story (1-2 paragraphs tops)
- Blurbs: from other authors, reviewers, award committees (name dropping is not a bad thing here, use any connections you have to get noticed!)
- Author Bio / Illustrator Bio (1 paragraph—and a picture is a nice touch, especially if self- or small publisher published)
- List of your other books (it's okay to include small thumbnail images of the books, but not too many)
- Contact Information
- Publisher Information
- Any discounts or special offers (on quantities, etc)
- Book Website!
*A single, double-sided, piece of paper—TOPS. Multiple pages gets overwhelming, and overlooked.
They surprised me and encouraged gimmicks: confetti in an envelope, a toy, etc. I've always heard the opposite, but that's for artwork promotion, not book promotion.