Thursday, September 19th, 2019

What Goes in a Media Kit?

SchatztruheAn editing client of mine recently asked for guidance on building a media kit, otherwise known as a press kit. This is something every author should have on their website – it gives potential reviewers, interviewers and event coordinators easy access to whatever support materials they might need to support a review, feature, interview or event. But what does one include in a media kit, in these multi-media days of ours? Here’s a list of things to consider including:

A high resolution photo of yourself – It’s worth investing in a good one, taken by a professional… not a candid shot or something snapped by a friend or relative. You won’t regret it.

Your bio – It’s a good idea to provide 2 or 3 versions of these – a mini one (100 words or less), a short one (250 words or less) and a full one. This way you can be sure that whichever format is used contains the information you want, rather than relying on the media to make cuts and value judgments in order to fit their space requirements. Keep it professional – write it in 3rd person, as if someone else has written about you, and focus primarily on writing-related experience – publication experience, awards, honors, degrees, organizations to which you belong, projects you are currently working on, and any information or experience that is related to your book(s) and demonstrates why you are the best person to tell this story.  (i.e. if your book is about a rescue dog and you have one, or if your book is about yoga and you teach it, etc.) But avoid general editorializing such as “…has dreamed of being a writer all her life,” or “has loved books ever since she learned how to read.” Just the facts, ma’am.

Contact information – Email, address and phone.  Include your agent or other representatives if applicable.

Information about your book(s):

  • Synopsis/outline
  • Sales info (where to buy, ISBN’s etc.)
  • Endorsements
  • Photo of your book jacket
  • Sample chapter, pages or artwork from the book(s)
  • Press release – click here to download a press release template
  • Related materials that demonstrate value or newsworthiness, such as recent news articles pertaining to your subject.
  • Marketing plan information – planned signings, guest appearances, media etc. and/or links to same. Be sure to keep this current.
  • Reviews – Focus on legit press reviews. Don’t bother including Amazon reviews, as they are generally considered meaningless in the industry, since people can just ask their friends and family to post them. Only include blog reviews if they are from a high profile, well-established kidlit blogger.  Also, it’s better to make pdf copies of the reviews that can be downloaded, rather than linking to a site where the review originally appeared, since that may expire.
  • Links to any book trailers or video interviews
  • Your social media information – Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, LinkedIn etc.


9 Responses to “What Goes in a Media Kit?”
  1. This is excellent information. Thank you, Emma. I have one question — you say to include address. I would prefer that my home address not be available on a publicly searchable website like that, and I’m sure I’m not alone in that feeling. Would you suggest a writer invest in a PO Box for their business correspondence, in order to deal with this?

  2. Emma says:

    Beth –
    I would indeed. A PO Box is essential. Equally important, though, is to check it regularly (as I have learned the hard way more than once.)

  3. Joanna says:

    Great info. I am bookmarking this. Thanks, Emma. My challenge is an address right now!

  4. Miranda Paul says:

    Thanks for the article. And, great question, Beth! I’ve seen a number of authors use their publisher’s address c/o their publicity department. I also know that I’ve contacted authors through their publicists for interviews. I’m leaning toward that avenue, as I foresee the PO box issue as something I may not want to tackle. Is an address through the publisher advisable, too?

  5. Emma says:

    Yes, if you have a publisher, publicist or agent, using their address is totally acceptable. The main thing is to provide some place where they can send you a hard copy of reviews or articles when they come out, or any other type of correspondence that is better served by snail mail. (There still are some – though they are dwindling!)

  6. Dodo van Uden says:

    Thanks, Emma! I had not realized that about Amazon comments. I have a question about reviews: Does one add, apart from the positive reviews, also the not so positive, critical, or even bad reviews?

  7. Emma says:

    Dodo –
    No, definitely not. Good reviews only!

  8. Excellent information. Will bookmark for future use. Just have to get published. Have done media kits for other projects.

  9. Emma,
    This is valuable information. I always wondered what went into a media kit. I’m bookmarking this for future use!

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