Headed to a writing conference where you can meet with agents and editors? Consider creating a one-sheet to present him or her during your interview.
A one-sheet is just that—one piece of paper, though you can print on both sides. The idea is to present yourself and the novel you’re pitching in a visual and memorable way by providing a page the agent or editor can take with them if they wish.
I’ve adapted the one-sheet for the novel/series I recently sold, Raspberries and Vinegar, to provide an example of something that can be created simply in Word. (When I was pitching it, it had a different title and slightly different story summary, so those are the reasons for adaptation.)
I created a two-sided one-sheet. Side 1 represents the first novel in the series as well as me as the author. Side 2 is about the series. When I have pitched a standalone novel, I stay with one side of the paper.
Keep in mind that this manuscript was targeted at Christian publishing houses. Your details and over-all design may be different, but keep your intended audience and genre in mind as you prepare. This is only one option out of many.
Here’s the first side of my one-sheet:
- Note the series name and author goes at the top. This is for quick reference only.
- Choose no more than two fonts. In this case I used Cochin for the majority of the text, and Chalkduster for a few headlines.
- Choose no more than one text color other than black, and use it judiciously.
- Tables are easy to set up and use in a text document. I used a table for the puppy/novel info and another one for my headshot/bio.
- Provide genre, length, and degree of completion.
- Add a catchy headline.
- Add a brief story blurb (100-150 words).
- Use a few horizontal lines to create divisions as needed.
- Create a bio that goes with your genre and story.
- A professional headshot will jog the agent or editor’s mind when they see you around the conference.
- Make sure your contact info is on the one-sheet!
- If you have an agent, add his or her contact info as well.
- Keep plenty of whitespace. This is meant to be glanced over, not read in depth.
- Headed to a writers conference? What goes on a one-sheet, anyway? Sample here: click to tweet
- Writer, wonder what is a one-sheet, how do you make one. . .and why? click to tweet
Here’s the second side of the one-sheet:
- Note the header is identical on both pages.
- Present the headline/info about the series.
- Provide a brief overview of each book (with its level of completeness).
- Convert your file to a pdf for emailing or printing in case the margins get messed up or the recipient doesn’t have your carefully-chosen font.
Can you think of any other information that should be on a one-sheet? Have you ever made and presented one?
Feature image courtesy of Keattikorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net