Shameless Self-Promotion: A Sample Sell Sheet

by | April 28, 2009 | General

In the May edition of my Shameless Self-Promotion column, “Publicists, Press Kits and Other P-words,” I talk about one of the most important parts of an author’s press kit: your sell sheet for your book. In fact, even if you don’t put together a press kit, the sell sheet is an important tool in any marketing efforts. Print out a stack of hard copies to hand out to bookstores and send with review copies. You will also need to send the same information (including a jpg of your cover) by email to anyone interested in your book–reviewers, bloggers, bookstores, and interviewers.

I wanted to post an example of my sell sheet to give you some ideas for your own. I can’t duplicate the exact layout here, but I’ve listed all the basic information for your reference. By the way, it’s definitely worth it to print your sell sheet in color to show your book cover to its best advantage.

A Sample Sell Sheet:

In the upper left hand corner I placed a 2 1/2 x 1 1/2-inch color reproduction of my book cover. To the right, in parallel, I list the following information:

By Donna George Storey

Neon/Orion Publishing
Price: $7.95
Category: Literary Erotica
Pages: 352
Book Type: Paper
Size: 4 1/2 x 7
ISBN: 1905619170
ISBN13: 9781905619177
Release Date: June 2008

Below that, centered on the page, I include the following teaser:

Take an exotic, erotic journey to a Japan few tourists ever see….

Amorous Woman is the story of an American woman’s love affair with Japan and her sensual encounters with the sexy men and women she meets along the way. First-time novelist Donna George Storey, a widely published erotica writer who holds a Ph.D. in Japanese literature, challenges the boundaries of culture and genre in this modern remake of Ihara Saikaku’s classic 17th century novel of the pleasure quarters. Lusty, wise-cracking Lydia—the modern Amorous Woman–experiences every flavor of erotic pleasure Japan has to offer from illicit encounters in hot spring baths to fantasy orgies straight from manga porn. Described by critics as “rich with sensual detail, humor, and emotional complexity,” “hard to put down,” and “literary erotica at its best,” the novel will change your image of Japan—and erotica—forever.

Below this I provide contact information for the author (myself) and the publisher (or rather the assistant editor who actually deals with me and my book’s business rather than the official editor). I include a phone number, website, and email address for each. Below this I list the following:

Bookstore ordering: Available through Ingram and the Independent Publishers Group

Independent Publishers Group
814 North Franklin St.
Chicago, IL 60610
Phone: 312-337-0747
FAX: 312-337-5985
Orders Only: 800-888-4741

That’s all there is to a sell sheet–one page with all the most important information about your book. It’s a slim, but essential tool in your kit. Happy promoting!

Find out more about Donna George Storey and her adventures in shameless self-promotion at her blog.

Donna George Storey

I want to change the world one dirty story at a time. When I posted this mission statement on my website, I hoped my cheeky ambition would make my readers smile. I smile every time I read it myself. And yet I’m totally serious. I truly believe that writers who are brave enough to speak their truth about the erotic experience in all its complexity—the yearning, the pleasure, the conflicts, and the sweet satisfaction—do change the world for the better. So if you’re here at ERWA because you’re already writing erotica, a big thank you and keep on doing what you’re doing. If you’re more a reader than a writer, I encourage you to start dreaming and writing and expressing the truth and magic of this fundamental part of the human experience in your own unique voice. Can there be a more pleasurable way to change the world? I'm the author of Amorous Woman, a semi-autobiographical erotic novel set in Japan, The Mammoth Book of Erotica Presents the Best of Donna George Storey  and nearly 200 short stories and essays in journals and anthologies. Check out my Facebook author page at:  


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