Don’t forget advance promotional materials

I have a collection of promotional materials I offer schools at various points in the booking process. Immediately after a school contacts me inquiring about an author visit, if they’re simply looking for more information, I “snail mail” my advance packet. (See below.)

Kim Norman's author visit advance promotional packetEven if a visit never comes to pass, they’ll have my brochure and other materials, including a music CD of my “Storytime Boogie,” and they may remember me in a coming year. I have had PTA coordinators tell me they were handed my packet from an out-going committee member, so it’s clear that at least some of the recipients really do value and hold onto the packet for future years. [Read more…]

Getting gigs: Align with other authors

AlignHeading_150dpiI have a lot of author friends I’ve met online and through the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. (www.scbwi.org ) If you write children’s books, give this organization some serious consideration. It was at a regional SCBWI conference that I got my big break, meeting a New York editor who eventually bought my first book. I’m close enough with some of these authors that we exchange brochures. At the end of an author visit, I give the coordinator their brochures with my endorsement. My friends do the same for me. This has resulted in quite a few bookings over the years.


PlanningYourVisit_coverSmall_byKimNormanHave you signed up for Cool School Visits updates? Sign up using the form on the upper right side of this page, and you’ll receive a free copy of my guide, PLANNING YOUR AUTHOR SCHOOL VISIT, which includes sample programs and breakdowns to target your sessions to different grade levels. (If you’re on a smart phone, keep scrolling and you’ll find the form at the very bottom of any blog post, below any comments.)

Asking for the check

Asking4theCheck_150dpiYeah, that can be awkward. You can’t baldly ask, “Where’s my money?” Well, you can, but… yikes. Some coordinators and bookkeepers will remember to hand you the check right away, at the beginning of the day. (Yay!) If lunch has passed and there’s still no mention of it, sometimes I play dumb and ask, “Did you give me the check already? Sometimes I forget where I put it!” This makes for a light moment and a memory-jog for the coordinator. If I remember to plan ahead, sometimes I carry a printed invoice in my “magic folder.” (More about my magic folder later.) With the invoice in hand, I ask, “Did you need me to give you a printed invoice for the visit? I have it here.” Usually they’ll say no, but the question also serves as a graceful reminder to retrieve the check.


PlanningYourVisit_coverSmall_byKimNormanHave you signed up for Cool School Visits updates? Sign up using the form on the upper right side of this page, and you’ll receive a free copy of my guide, PLANNING YOUR AUTHOR SCHOOL VISIT, which includes sample programs and breakdowns to target your sessions to different grade levels. (If you’re on a smart phone, keep scrolling and you’ll find the form at the very bottom of any blog post, below any comments.)

Welcome to Cool School Visits!

Here, you’ll find lots of advice on doing author school visits. We’ll discuss organizing the visits, holding book sales, creating presentations, tech issues, promotion, what to charge… even dealing with crowd control and stage fright!

Kim Norman author visit, newspaper clippiing


PlanningYourVisit_coverSmall_byKimNormanHave you signed up for Cool School Visits updates? Sign up using the form on the upper right side of this page, and you’ll receive a free copy of my guide, PLANNING YOUR AUTHOR SCHOOL VISIT, which includes sample programs and breakdowns to target your sessions to different grade levels. (If you’re on a smart phone, keep scrolling and you’ll find the form at the very bottom of any blog post, below any comments.)