Today I’m continuing my posts on…
SCHOOL TIME + AUTHOR TIME = LEARNING STUDENTS
Before you contact a school, as a presenter you need to have several things in order.
Just as in trying to be published, you want to put your best foot forward. I have composed a list of several things I think you need to have to be SCHOOL VISIT ready…
Have several – Just as when you write, you will need presentations to meet the age groups you are speaking to. I have several: a reading level, which works great for the youngest, the writing mechanics, which works really well for the mid range, the business side, which works well with the older range. I also have a writing workshop. You can also develope presentations that will coinside with one particular book or series.Note Cards – Yes. Write down your key points. Keep them handy during your presentation. It helps to have this, even if you have done the presentation a million times.
Rehearse – Get in front of a mirror and pretend you are talking to the crowd. Notice your facial features and how you move. Time it too. Most people will want to know how long your presentation takes. Take your time and go through all the motions until it feels natural.
Flash Drive – Back your presentations up on a flash drive. I usually try to send my material a head of time, but sometimes things fail or won’t come up when you need it too. Have your flash drive handy to save the day.
Have a Back-Up Plan – Even when you plan, things do always go as planned. Computers going down is only one senario. Always have a back up plan.
- Forms, Flyers, & Business Cards
Information is the key. Try to lay everything out for your contacts. I have several flyers that are pdf files.
- Author Is Coming – This flyer is for them to post on their walls. I have a spot where they can include the date of the visit, as well as a picture of me and my books available.
- Bio – This flyer should be sent home to the parents. I don’t know about you, but I didn’t like it when I didn’t receive information about the person who was visiting my children’s school.
- Book Form – This form will be sent home to the parent too. Hopefully, increasing your sales.
- Agreement / Contract – Yes, you should have one. This puts in words what both parties expect.
Then I also bring these along:
- Business Cards – I usually have a few (media specialist, principals, teachers, parents) who will ask if I have one on hand.
- Mini-Flyer – This is something I added. It tells a story on how and why I became an author and how they can find out more about me (website). I use these to autograph for the children who forgot their money or were not able to purchase a book.
- Mic & Speaker
I request the school to provide one for me, but I have one as a back up. Mics are relatively cheap (under $50). Speakers…. well I’m ‘barrowing’ my oldest son’s electric guitar amp. It works though and he doesn’t mind.
- Pens & Cash
PENS – You need those for signing. And yes, they WILL walk off when you are not looking.Cash – I bring a change bag, because you will usually have someone who forgot the correct change or they may have the wrong amount on the check.
Yes, bring extra books. Even when the school does order (which I ask them too, but not all schools will), you will have late orders or the wrong book(s) may have gotten shipped.
- Emergency Box
This is another thing I’ve incorporated, an emergency box. You can your a recipe box or whatever. Some of the things I have inside are:Tissues – teary eyes or runny nose
Cough drops – dry throat or stubborn cough
Peppermint – same purpose as the cough drops, but smells better
Eye drops – dry eyes or allergies.
Band aids – I’m a clutz and have had to have one at the worse of times
Eye glass wipes – the better to see you my dearsNote Card of Presentations
- Carrying-Tub or Bag
So I will put all my items together, because being organized is hard and I have to do this a head of time.In my carrying-tub I have:
- mic w/ cord
- book stands
- cash bag
One day I want to incorporate an easier way to lug all my items. 🙂
In my bag:
- Emergency box
Then I have my speaker too, if and when needed.
Yes, I have to make more than one trip. Working on that.
- Tablet & Projector
(this is on my want list)
Tablet – there are so many wonderful tablet out there now that can take the place of your computer. My heart is set on one that have a usb post to hook my flash drive into.Projector – have you seen them lately!?! They are small and compact. By having one of these I’ll be able to showcase my presentation almost anywhere!
Here’s a printable list for your convenience too. 🙂
:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you include for your school visits!
Have a question? Ask in the comments and I will answer it as best as I can.
Hope you found this useful. Til next time…
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