Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 14, 2009

Promoting Your Books with Storytelling

Now is the time to start thinking about schools and organizations that could bring you in to their schools and events, so I thought you might like to read the tips below from Amalia Hoffman on how to grab your audience’s attention.

Fourteen Ways to Grab Your Audience  by Amalia Hoffman

amaliawig 1.   Greet children with a smile. If the group is small, shake hands and ask their names.

2.   Make sure your host introduces you. If not, introduce yourself.

3.   Make eye contact with all sections of your audience.

4.   Don’t keep your hands in your pockets. Don’t maintain a rigid posture.

5.   Encourage audience participation by incorporating:

           Sing along

           Dance and movement

           Activity related to your story (cooking demonstration, art project)

            Questions and answers

6.   Use visual aids such as: simple props, puppets costumes, blown up and cut up illustrations from your book.

7.   Incorporate music by playing a CD or by playing an instrument.

8.   Use humor but don’t laugh at your own jokes.

9.   Keep it short and sweet. Assign a timekeeper (a teacher, parent or librarian) to give you an agreed – upon signal at 10 minutes and 5 minutes before the end of your presentation.

10.  If you realize that you’ve forgotten a part of the story, never say, “I forgot to tell you…” You can say, “Did I tell you?” or just let it go.

11.  Don’t forget to thank your host.

12.  Autograph your books by writing something personal, not just your signature. If you’re an illustrator, think of a little something you can draw quickly in each book or make a stamp.

13.  Try a little giveaway with every book purchased: cards, bookmark, coloring page.

14.  When you complete your presentation, always look pleased- you’ve done a great job!

I would like to add one more:  Always ask if your host will write up a letter you can use to promote your visits.

Amalia Hoffman has written and illustrated Purim Goodies and Klezmer Bunch and illustrated Friday Night With the Pope.  Take a minute to look at Amalia’s wonderful artwork on her website.

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