Wednesday, February 13, 2013

One Sheets

There are a lot of writer's conferences coming up, and if you're like me, you may get a little overwhelmed by all the information you need to take along with you. I attended my first conference in the beginning of June, 2012 so I could see an agent. There I said it.

I'm looking for an agent, editor, and/or publisher. Take your pick... ;) 

When I signed up for this conference, it was in the future and I had plenty of time to hone, polish, edit, polish, re-write, and polish my manuscript for this particular agent's eyes. However, I knew it was nigh impossible this person would want to carry around my 90,000+ manuscript for the entire day. So I made up a One Sheet.

Basically, a one sheet is your ammunition against a poor, over-wrought, over-tired agent or editor. This is your One. Chance. to grab said agent or editor's attention. How do you do that? Easy, my dear Watson. (Yep. I enjoyed the Sherlock Holmes movies, by the way.)

On your one sheet, you'll want to include a few necessary items.

- Title of your book.
- Tagline. (this is your hook)
Find a picture or background that will somehow convey the feeling of your book.Stock Xchange has some great freebies.
- Brief synopsis. (this is where you reel them in) but don't give away the ending of your story. You want them to ASK you for the full synopsis. More on that later.
- Your book's genre and word count.
- Your name, home address, email address, and phone number. (Short of writing your name on the bathroom stalls, you want to make it easy for them to find you.)
- Your website.

Some Tips:
Make it look professional.
Make it look professional.
And most importantly,
Make. It. Look. Professional!
Remember why you're there. You're going to make an impression within the first few seconds of meeting these people. Make yourself stand out in a good way.

I actually worked several different one sheets up on my computer. This is a fine way to do it, but what I came up with didn't really excel in the quality department. So, I checked my email for inspiration. (I know. A weird place to check, but it was THERE!) And I went to Vistaprint and took them up on their offer of some free flyers. 25 of them, to be exact. Great! Wiggle room. If one got messed up, I had plenty to take its place.

And this is what I took to the meeting with that wonderful agent:

one sheet for writers conferences by Amanda Stephan

So what do you think? Have you been to writer's conferences, and if you have, what did you find 
useful? Not so useful?

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