*The slideshow above is a great way to market your books or WIPS. Enjoy it now because after Monday I will be taking it off this page--Linda
If you're planning on attending a writer's conference in the near future, like I am, you should start to put together a "One Sheet" to bring with you.
What's a One Sheet?
Basically, it's a sheet of paper with your vital information on it and blurbs (short descriptions like you find on the back cover of books) about your WIPS (works-in-progress) or WC (works completed) you plan to pitch to agents and editors.
I've done a lot of these over the years and I'm happy to say that four of those books were published.
This year, I decided to design a One Sheet that looked a bit different from those of past years. Mine will be two-sided on glossy paper. One side (see above) will contain my bio, contact information and picture. The other side will contain the title of selected projects, the blurb that goes with it, word count, and finally, whether or not the work is completed.
These One Sheets are real time savers and conversation starters to bring with you to the 15-minute meetings with agents, or in my case, editors (since I already have an agent). You hand them the paper and start talking. That's right--the One Sheet is no substitute for conversation. Writers must go in prepped and ready to talk about what they've written, what they're writing and what they might write. I know a writer who pulled an idea out of thin air--a desperate, yet creative idea that the editor liked. That writer got a contract because she knew how to think fast on her feet.
Do you? Can you?
If you're planning on going to a writer's conference in the near future, and I certainly hope you do, start considering what you plan on bringing with you both physically, and mentally.
- Start to memorize and practice reciting your blurb (your pitch) in an engaging way.
- Have business cards made.
- Write your bio.
- Get a nice headshot done of yourself.
- Design your One Sheet.
- Go through your closet and put together a business casual wardrobe for the conference.
- And take a deep breath!
Actually, I'm not joking about that. It's an old Toastmaster trick. As you are walking to the table or desk where an agent or editor waits to hear your pitch, take a deep breath before you sit down. Seriously, it works. Otherwise, you might be breathless or sound nervous or even feel faint from lack of oxygen!
One last bit of advice--have fun. Conferences are all about hobnobbing with other authors and talking about your common love, books. Remember, these are people who share the same obsession as you do. These are folks who "get" you like few people do. Enjoy your time with other writers.
Because all too soon, you'll have to go home, get back to the grindstone and go about the solitary past time you love and loathe--writing!
I will be attending the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) Conference in Dallas, TX www.acfw.com this month. There might still be some openings should you care to attend as well! If you will love this conference as much as I do, your brain will be on overload by the end of it. I learn soooo much at conferences and usually come home with a ton of books, both free and purchased. Again, if you're interested, please check the website: www.acfw.com.