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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The One Sheet

While finishing editing my manuscript, I also started drafting some promotional material--a query letter, synopsis, and most recently, a one sheet.

Now, the specifications for a "one sheet" (a one-page document used to pitch to agents and editors personally) don't seem to be as rigid as those for preparing a manuscript. But most one sheets I've seen contain the following elements.

A tag line. One brief sentence attempting to get the agent's attention.

A brief synopsis or "hook." A few sentences introducing the plot of the book, much like one would include in a good, concise query letter.

A brief bio of the author and his or her writing history. This was hard for me. I'm not used to writing about myself.

A photograph. Even harder. I hate having pictures taken. I might need to get a professional portrait done.

Contact information. Double checking for typos.

Unlike manuscript preparation, some creativity is allowed--the use of a frame, layout, even a tiny splash of color.

Bad ideas? Colored paper, glitter, unusual fonts, too much clip art. In short, anything that says 'tacky' or 'unprofessional.'

2 comments:

  1. Saw your post on Twitter and had to hop over to say hi! You have a very lovely blog and I'm glad to read about one-sheets! I've yet to write mine for ACFW, so I appreciate the advice!

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  2. Barb: Creating my one sheets was the funnest part of pitching my books. Is funnest a word?
    I'm having a book drawing on my blog through Thursday; the post on interview with Patti Lacy. Would love you to pop over and enter!

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