Thursday, September 11, 2008

Making a press release

I've been busy brainstorming ideas for ways to get the word out about What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?, my craft book that comes out next spring. I'm no marketing genius so I've been reading up on the subject and putting together my take on a press release (still a rough draft). What do you think?


Libby Koponen said...

Anna! I think that looks beautiful and reads brilliantly. My only suggestion would be to put a link, not just to your Web site but to the specific page where they can download images to use in anything they write...but come to think of it your home page is so beautiful, that may be a bad idea!

WELL DONE. If I had the job of writing articles for a newspaper, this would defintely make me want to write something about you. And whenever you do a school visit, you can send it to local papers AND RADIO STATIONS ahead of time.

I bet this book will be super-successful!

Anna Alter said...

Thanks Libby, I am hoping to redesign my site soon to make that kind of info really easy for people to find.

Also great idea about using it when I do visits, I always assume schools will contact local media but I think often they don't.

Anonymous said...

That's a really stylish press release!

Maybe in points of interest you could have a link to either Holt or your site if there are downloads like Libby mentions above. Points 2 and 4 seem to be addressed in the first paragraph -- I think you could cut those and replace with web info or if you are partnering with any recycling groups?

I wonder if you might include a direct quote from yourself about the book or what inspired you to write the book.

I could be wrong, but wouldn't media be able to easily stick that quote in their article? Or if these go to teachers/librarians they get a nice insight into your personality from a quote.

You could keep the layout of the current page if you cut your RISD and past publishing credits info and swap in a quote. "Learn about all of Anna's books at" is a nice enticement to see your titles PLUS the awesome illustrations.

It might be fun to think of something to put on the back of the press release that lets the reader reuse the piece of paper. Like how to fold it to make a little paper boat or...something clever from the book. Can't wait to see it!!!

Elaine Magliaro said...


I think it's excellent--and provides plenty of information without being too wordy. Your first paragraph is clear and concise and includes examples of activities from the book. I would keep the biographical paragraph as it is. I am always interested to know what other books an author and/or illustrator has published.

Suggestions on the "points of interest":

- I'd cut "going green made easy" from the first point.
- I'd reword point 2 so all of the points begin with verbs--teaches, challenges, includes...
- I do think points 2 and 4 are similar. Maybe you don't need both. Could you combine them?

Anna Alter said...

Thanks Jaime, love the idea of putting something on the back to fold!

Press releases are such a small amount of room to fit SO much information, I don't envy pr folk, its a hard job I'm realizing! How much should be about *you* and how much about the *book*??

Anyways thanks for the advice, lots of good things to think about.

Anonymous said...

Anna, I think that's great! When I do my book about garbage we should team up ... combine forces.

I just went on a tour of the landfill -- good fun that was.


Anna Alter said...

Ooo totally. We could do workshops for kids or something all about garbage and recycling... can't wait to see the garbage book!

Thanks for the advice Elaine.

alvinaling said...

I like the idea of including a quote--you could maybe squeeze one into your bio, something about why you wanted to write this book? Also, minor point, but you don't actually say that you're the author of the book--I know this might seem obvious, but I think you should add "written and illustrated by Anna Alter" at the top. And maybe to the Details section, too.

And just some little proofreading comments--add a hyphen between "problem-solving," and maybe italicize or boldface the book title on both the top and bottom?

Otherwise, this looks great!

Anonymous said...

I agree with the comments so far--especially love the idea of turning the press release into something--fabulous!

One tiny copediting thing: I'd put a comma between "Estelle and Lucy" and "Francine's Day." Without one, it can sound like one long title!

Nice job! It's an appealing press release.

B P said...

Hey, I just saw this and thin kit looks great - my only comment was already addressed (about the book titles) so it all looks great to me.

On the subject of schools contacting local media, generally they don't to too much of that - but you can also ask the teacher or staff member you are booking with - let them know it bring good publicity to their school and they may put you on their PSAs.

Good luck! (and can't wait to see you)

B P said...

sorry - next time I'll proofread before posting! :-)