Press Releases – Can You Write One?

Shelia M. GossWhy would I want to write my own press release? You may be asking yourself this, especially if you hired a publicist.

There may come a time where you will need to send a press release; whether it’s because you can’t get a hold of your publicist, it’s beyond the scope of your contract with your publicist or having a publicist might not be in your budget, etc.

What is the purpose of a press release? A press release is an announcement. It should contain specific information. For example, you may write one to announce an event (such as book signings, participation in an expo, etc.) or a major achievement (such as your book making a bestsellers list, optioned as a movie, etc.).

Writing a press release isn’t hard.

What should the press release include? Make sure your press release has an eye-catching Title, contact information and include the five W’s:

  • Who (Identify yourself)
  • What (Your announcement)
  • Where (Location of the book signing or event)
  • When (Date and Time) and
  • Why (Because you’re the next best thing to sliced bread…just kidding, but you get the point…smile).

How should the press release look? To view an example of a few press releases, please go to one of the following links:

Where should I submit the press release? Press releases should be sent out to your target audience, which can include media outlets such as newspapers, TV, radio, magazines or book clubs, bookstores, etc.

Are there any online services I can use to distribute my press release? Yes, there are several. PRWeb (http://www.prweb.com/) is one that I would recommend.

Don’t limit yourselves to online services. Find out fax numbers and mailing addresses of your target audiences and send them out that way as well. Try not to send stuff out blindly though. Make sure you know exactly who you’re sending the press release to.

Now you’re ready to try your hand at writing your own press release. Remember to keep it simple. Keeping it simple, means being direct and specific.

Shelia M. Goss

Shelia M. Goss has over thirteen books in print and numerous of ebooks available. She writes in multiple genres. With unique storylines, her goal is to create “stories with a twist.” For more information, visit her website at www.sheliagoss.com.


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4 thoughts on “Press Releases – Can You Write One?

  1. Gordon Williams

    Thanks for the concise article on press releases, Sheila. Some media actually prefer the term “news release” because they like to distance themselves from the “old” world of print.

    Something a lot of people leave out of their news release is actual news. Yeah, I know that is a huge subject but the simple fact that you have written a book is not news. Lots of people write books, and editors want to know why your story will be of interest to their readers.

    1. Shelia Goss

      Gordon thanks for adding that extra tip. I’ve seen authors get picked up because they showed how their book tied in to a news worthy topic.

      I will make note to start saying “news release.” :)

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