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MARKETING AND PUBLICITY HEADER

MARKETING AND PUBLICITY

Meet the Marketing and Publicity Team

Think of the Chronicle Books Marketing and Publicity team as your own personal fan club. We spread the word about your latest Chronicle title to everyone from bookstore buyers to individual consumers. Your publicist helps you score interviews, reviews, and other press coverage, while your marketing manager draws attention to your title through online marketing, sales materials, advertising, events, and other channels. Your marketing manager and publicist will contact you closer to your pub date, but you can always find their contact information here.

If you're not sure who to contact, email Liza Algar or one of the department assistants or coordinators (listed below) for help.

Marketing and Publicity Contacts

Liza Algar Liza Algar
Executive Director, Marketing & Publicity
415-537-4261
liza_algar@chroniclebooks.com

Children's category

Includes all children's and young adult books and products:

Sally Kim Sally Kim (Sally oversees marketing and publicity for our Children's Books division).
Associate Director of Marketing, Children's
415-537-4328
sally_kim@chroniclebooks.com
Lara Starr Lara Starr
Sr. Publicist, Children's
415-537-4326
lara_starr@chroniclebooks.com
Hannah Moushabeck Hannah Moushabeck
Associate Marketing Manager, Children's
415-537-4257
hannah_moushabeck@chroniclebooks.com
Jaime Wong Jaime Wong
Associate Marketing Manager, Children's
415-537-4296
jaime_wong@chroniclebooks.com

Adult categories

Albee Dalbotten Albee Dalbotten
Marketing Director, Adult Trade
415-537-4378
albee_dalbotten@chroniclebooks.com

Entertainment category

Includes music, pop culture, humor, pets, sports, and licensed entertainment products:

Sandy Smith Sandy Smith
Marketing Manager, Entertainment & Art
415-537-4428
sandy_smith@chroniclebooks.com
April Whitney April Whitney
Sr. Publicist, Entertainment
415-537-4253
april_whitney@chroniclebooks.com

Lifestyle category

Includes craft, gardening, house, style, parenting, relationships, life events, and mind/body/spirit:

Alexandra Brown Alexandra Brown
Marketing and Publicity Manager, Lifestyle
415-537-4252
alexandra_brown@chroniclebooks.com

Food & Drink category

Includes all cookbooks and beverage books:

Amy Cleary Amy Cleary
Marketing and Publicity Manager, Food & Drink
415-537-4276
amy_cleary@chroniclebooks.com

Art category

Includes photography, art, architecture, design, and stationery products:

Sandy Smith Sandy Smith
Marketing Manager, Entertainment & Art
415-537-4428
sandy_smith@chroniclebooks.com
Diane Levinson Diane Levinson
Publicist, Art
212-995-9620 x214
diane@papress.com

Online Marketing

Kathryn Jaller Kathryn Jaller
Associate Marketing Director, Online Strategy
415-537-4322
kathryn_jaller@chroniclebooks.com
Viniita Moran Viniita Moran
Web Manager
415-537-4344
viniita_moran@chroniclebooks.com
Jenna Homen Jenna Homen
Community Manager
415-537-4270
jenna_homen@chroniclebooks.com
Irene Kim Shepherd Irene Kim Shepherd
Associate Manager, Visual Content
415-537-4250
irene_kim@chroniclebooks.com

Marketing and Publicity Department Coordinators and Assistants

Sarah Lin Go Sarah Lin Go
Publicity Coordinator
415-537-4274
sarah_lin@chroniclebooks.com
Megan Leaf Megan Leaf
Marketing Assistant
415-537-4213
megan_leaf@chroniclebooks.com

How We Promote Your Title

Just as no two projects are the same, no two marketing and publicity plans are the same. However, there are some general tools that we use to promote the work of all our book and gift product authors.

Catalog

Your book will be featured in our seasonal catalog. Published twice a year (spring and fall), our catalog goes out to more than 25,000 book reviewers, librarians, media contacts, and retailers. The spring catalog encompasses books published March through July, and the fall catalog covers titles published August through February. We post our catalogs on our website for easy reference. Your editor will send you a copy of the print catalog in which your book appears, but if you would like extra copies contact your publicist.

Website

We feature our titles on chroniclebooks.com. Your title's listing will appear a few months before publication. If you notice a discrepancy on our website, contact your marketing manager.

Press Release / Press Kit

Your publicist will create a press release announcing your title. In some cases the press release will be part of a larger press kit, which may include a pitch letter, author bio, excerpt from the title, and author Q&A. For more information about your press release or press kit, contact your publicist.

Review Mailing

Before your title hits the stores, copies will be sent out to local and national media—which may include magazines, newspapers, websites, blogs, and radio and TV stations—for review consideration. We'll work with you to determine which media outlets are the most likely to feature your title.

Advance/Long-Lead Mailing

4-6 months prior to pub date
We send copies to magazines and outlets that require longer notice.

Short-Lead Mailing

1-2 months prior to pub date
We send copies to newspapers, weeklies, blogs, and websites.

Influencers Mailing

1-6 months prior to pub date
As an expert in your field, you likely know several influential people who will champion your work through word of mouth. When your book or gift product arrives in the warehouse we can mail copies to a select group of Influencers along with a personal note from you.

If you have questions or suggestions about the review mailing, contact your publicist.

Social Media

Chronicle Books loves social media! We maintain a lively presence on all major social networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest. We also have a weekly email newsletter and a popular blog that updates daily with posts about our books. Please take a moment to follow us on all social channels, bookmark our blog, and subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

Sales Team

Our Marketing and Publicity team keeps our sales force in the loop about media coverage, marketing efforts, and other factors that can directly affect sales. Say you're appearing on a local news program in Chicago. Our sales representatives can then use that information to make sure Chicago-area stores have your title in stock.

Promoting Your Work Online

In today's web-savvy world, readers crave an authentic connection with their favorite authors. As a result, there's been a huge shift in online marketing best practices. Today, the most successful book launches are achieved by a strong partnership between the publisher and the author.

At Chronicle Books, we will look to you, the author, to work very closely with us and be the ultimate expert in your field. In many cases, we'll help you brainstorm and strategize, and then work alongside you to bring the plan to life. This will help your book achieve maximum online buzz and allow your authentic voice to shine through. As the author of your title, your voice is more authentic and engaging than that of your marketing manager or publicist. The more you can do to support the efforts of your marketing and publicity team, the better it is for all of us.

Ready to get started? Great! This section of the Author Resource Center has all the info you need to get started. And there's no need to wait until your book publishes.

Below you'll find some marketing projects you can tackle right away—and long before your book hits shelves. This is just a brief overview and you should feel free to mix and match options, depending on what makes sense for your time commitments and your project. We'll delve into each topic in more detail later on.

After Signing the Contract

Build a Custom Website
If you don't already have one, consider building a custom website that will act as the centralized hub for all your marketing efforts. You can also join affiliate programs to enjoy a commission on sales that generate from a recommendation on your site.

Join Social Media Platforms or Start a Blog
Begin connecting and communicating directly with your audience via social media. Have more time? You might also consider adding a blog to your website.

Email
Set up Google Alerts to track mentions of your name, your site, and your book.

Keep up the Momentum
After you've got your online marketing platforms in place, it's important to keep the momentum building. Post to your social networks regularly and interact with people in your space regularly.

Leading up to Publication

Do Your Homework
As the publication date of your book nears, you'll begin to have more contact with your publicist and marketing manager. Before your first meeting with them, do your homework. What are the top sites, blogs, and publications that would be interested in your book? What fun ideas would catch the eye of your readers? Do you have any contacts we can leverage on your behalf to get your book extra attention? Doing research in advance will make you a more valuable partner in brainstorming.

Author Questionnaire
Your marketing manager may ask you to fill out the Author Questionnaire. Put aside some time to provide thoughtful responses and then send it back. This is a vital tool that we will use to develop your overall promotion plan.

Amazon Author Central
Once your book is uploaded to Amazon, you can join Amazon Author Central and customize how your Amazon page looks.

On Publication

Keep Posting
Even though publication is a busy time, keep posting on your blog and social platforms.

Follow Through on Your Commitments
By the time your book hits shelves (and online stores!), you'll have a firm marketing and publicity plan in place. It's vital that you follow through on all the tasks you agreed to. Your on-sale date is a critical time and many of the opportunities that arise during that window can't wait.

Need Help?
Not sure if you should be blogging, Tweeting, Facebooking, or all three? Your publicist and marketing manager can guide you through the ins and outs of online marketing and help you figure out which approach is right for your project. Don't hesitate to get in touch.

Custom Websites

A website serves as a centralized hub for promoting your work. If you do already have a site, check out the best practices below to ensure that it's fully optimized for your book's launch. If you don't yet have a site and want to create one, keep reading for tips. 

It's vital to ensure that your site is professional looking. If you're somewhat web savvy, build your own site using the help of website-building companies with professionally designed, ready-made templates. Check out sites like SquareSpace, Weebly, and Wordpress. This method can significantly reduce your costs and may be ideal if you're comfortable with basic web design.

If you decide to hire a pro, be sure to view examples of the designer's work and check references to make sure the designer delivered the work specified within the quoted price and timeline.

When building a custom website, the most important first step is to select a URL and site name that's linked with you, your brand, or your book. You can use web domain sites like Google Domains to do free research on which URLs are available. If your name is memorable, easy to spell, and available for purchase, it might be the right choice. Alternatively, you can choose your book's title—but this isn't always the best choice for a series of books. It's also ideal to choose a URL with ".com" at the end. Alternate endings tend to confuse online users and don't gain the same traction in the marketplace.

Once you decide on the right name and URL, you can register and purchase your domain name through the following domain name registrars: Network Solutions, Register.com, or Google Domains. If that seems daunting, ask your web designer to assist you. Costs are usually less than $15 for one domain per year.

Before your designer can get started, you'll need to decide upon and communicate your site goals, which generally include selling your book, informing people about upcoming releases or events, and building relationships with your readers to keep them coming back for more. Break these goals into sections (a.k.a. your website architecture). For example:

Home
About the Author
Books
Contact

The design of your site should be appropriate to your content. Work with your web designer to achieve a professional presence that is tailored to your target audience. Ensure that your web designer produces clean and legible design, along with clear and easily accessible navigation.

Include easy-to-see links to buy your product(s) on all major retailers: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, chroniclebooks.com, Google Play, iTunes, and Indiebound. Increasingly online retailers are checking to make sure they are included on your site and will not promote authors who do not link to them. Additionally fans really appreciate a link to Indiebound, which helps them find your book at a local bookstore. To find these links, just search for your book on each site and then copy the URL for your book’s page on that site.

Affiliate Programs

Affiliate programs allow website owners to generate revenue by linking to online retailers and earning commissions on sales originating from their sites. Affiliate programs are free to join, and they have become a popular form of online marketing.

Amazon.com pioneered this type of program with their Amazon Associates Affiliate program, but today many different booksellers—including Barnes & Noble, Alibris, and IndieBound—offer competitive affiliate programs. Chronicle Books has its own affiliate program, and we are excited to announce a special 10% commission rate just for Chronicle Books authors and illustrators.

Keep in mind that you are not limited to one affiliate program: you can partner with many retailers and offer an assortment of different commission-based links, banners, or buttons on your site.

Chronicle Books Affiliate Program
Our Affiliate Program allows anyone with a website or blog to earn revenue by linking to our products—and it's absolutely FREE. Every time a visitor clicks through to ChronicleBooks.com from an affiliate's site and purchases a book, that site owner earns a commission.

How It Works
We've teamed up with LinkShare, the leading affiliate marketing network on the Internet, to offer competitive discounts and great deals for our affiliates. Once you join our Affiliate Program, you can use the HTML code we supply to generate links from your site to ours. We offer you a variety of choices, including banners, buttons, and text links. The more your links lead to sales on our site, the more money your site will earn. You'll be offering great deals on your website, and making money on every sale within 30 days of your referral.

Special Commission Rates for Authors/Artists
As a Chronicle Books author or artist you'll receive a special offer of 10% commission on all purchases (excluding limited edition books). We offer the general public a standard tiered commission structure ranging from 6-10% based on volume of sales.

Join Today!
For more information, or to join our Author/Artist Affiliate Program, please contact your marketing manager.

Amazon Associates Affiliate Program
(From Amazon.com)

The Amazon Associates affiliate program provides you with a variety of linking options from which you can choose. Whether your goal is to maximize conversion, delight your site visitors with a unique presentation of Amazon content, or both, you decide how much control you want over the products displayed in each set of links.

You can allow Amazon to recommend products to your site visitors (Omakase Links), you can select categories and/or keywords (Recommended Product Links) or hand-pick the individual products and Amazon.com pages to which to link (Product and Text Links).

As an Amazon.com Associate, you can earn from 4% to 8.5% commission on books, based on the total number of qualifying shipped items from both Amazon and third-party sellers. For compensation details, click here.

Barnes & Noble Affiliate Program
(From Barnesandnoble.com)

By joining the BN.com program you will be paid 6% on each order that comes from your site through a valid affiliate link. That is on top of any royalties you may already be receiving from the sale of the book. Also, BN.com has millions of products that are also eligible for the 6% commission – so not only will you earn a commission on your book, you'll also earn commissions on any other products purchased by customers who arrive from your site.

How does the application process work?
To join the BN.com program you need to be a member of the LinkShare network. Should you not be a member yet please click here.

The sign up process is easy and if you will be notified fairly quickly if you are approved to participate in the BN.com program.

Do you pay commission on ebooks and NOOK?
Absolutely! You will be provided with 6% commission on ebook downloads and NOOK ereaders purchased through your affiliate links.

How can I sell my book?
There are a number of tools to use to sell your book. You can select it from the datafeed, use our API, set up a tracking link through your LinkShare tool or, if you are a blog, use the LinkShare WordPress Plug In.

The Plug In will help you easily select your title while you are in the middle of writing your blog and post it with ease. Check out the plug in here.

How do I know how many sales I am generating?
When working with BN.com through LinkShare you will have access to a reporting dashboard, via LinkShare, that will provide you with all your most recent sales data. It will let you know what products you sold, how many you sold, how much money you drove amongst other valuable program data.

Social Media Platforms

After you have your site built, it's time to find your online tribe—and learn how they interact with each other. Social media makes it easy to stay connected with friends, family, colleagues, as well as readers and fans of your work. With millions of people participating on these networks, they're ideal for building a community around your title.

If you're brand-new to social media, download our Golden Rules of Social Media and read that before continuing on in this section.

Social media is a conversation. If you're new to social networks, start with a listening period. Take time to absorb new information and learn how your community interacts with one another. Read blogs and sites you admire, and pay careful attention to the comments each gets. Follow these influencers on Twitter and like them on Facebook. If there are specialty social sites for your online tribe, go there and connect with others.

Once you have a handle on your community, it's time to begin interacting yourself. At a minimum, you should strongly consider joining both Facebook and Twitter—though there are a few others we'll highlight in this section that might make sense for your book and your fan base.

Facebook

Facebook is the largest social network on the web today, used to connect with friends, share articles, and interact with brands and celebrities. 

One of the strengths of Facebook as a social networking tool is the ability to create a fan page, which can be separate from your personal page. Use your fan page to generate buzz around your title through posts and by sharing events. Facebook pages are also useful in marketing yourself online because they show up in public search results.

Facebook allows individual users to create an official username. For example, instead of having something like this "facebook.com/8445890-wu3i3j" for your Facebook URL, you could have "facebook.com/yourname." If you already have an account, click here and Facebook will walk you through how to assign a username to your account. If you don't have a Facebook account, sign up now and be sure to add a username as a part of the set-up process.

If you're interested in joining Facebook, download our Facebook 101.

Twitter

After you've got a handle on Facebook, it's time to turn your attention to Twitter, the most popular micro-blogging service. Micro-blogging lets you send short messages (140 characters or fewer) to a group of followers, or people who have chosen to receive your updates.

The best way to understand Twitter is to spend some time on the site. For inspiration, check out self-promoting authors (and avid tweeters) like Neil Gaiman and Margaret Atwood, as well as hundreds of book lovers, authors, publishers, and book trade professionals.

To get started, download our Twitter 101 guide. This will explain how to sign up for a free Twitter account, how to follow @ChronicleBooks, and all the basics of Tweeting.

Instagram

For visual artists, illustrators, crafters, cookbook authors, or anyone with something eye-catching to share, Instagram offers another valuable avenue to promote yourself. 

Instagram is an app that allows users to upload a photo or video and share it with their followers. It’s one of the fastest growing social networks and beloved by the book community. If you’re interested in signing up for Instagram, download our Instagram 101 and be sure to follow @chroniclebooks. 

Pinterest

Pinterest is meant to mimic the old-fashioned pin boards, upon which people pinned lovely things they had collected—postcards, ticket stubs, old pictures, etc. On Pinterest, users are encouraged to create themed boards and to pin things they find on the Internet to that virtual board.

For example, a cookbook author might make a board entitled: My Favorite Recipes. On this virtual board, she can pin recipes from her own site, her blogging friends' sites, and major food outlets. But it's not just pinning things that already exist on the Internet. You can also upload brand-new pictures to your board.

Once you get the hang of the site, you should begin to follow the boards of other users. You can easily comment on other peoples' pins and share them on social networks. Eventually you'll have a nice online community of fellow pinners, all sharing cool things you find on the Internet. If you’re interested in joining Pinterest, download our Pinterest 101.

Tumblr

Another site you might consider joining is Tumblr. Tumblr is a bit like Wordpress—only with a built-in social network. Once you write a post, it then is in the Tumblr universe where it can be discovered by other Tumblr users and reblogged.If you’re interested in starting a Tumblr, download our Tumblr 101.

Goodreads

If you’re interested in joining a social community built on a shared love of books, Goodreads is a great option. You can create virtual bookshelves of your favorite titles, connect with friends, write and share reviews, and connect directly with other authors. At the very least, you should consider becoming a Goodreads Author so that you can optimize your author page and interact with readers.

How Often Should I Post?

After you've built your site and joined some social networks, you can relax, right? Nope! Now it's time to keep the momentum going. Commit to keeping your online content fresh by updating regularly and engaging in conversations with your fans and followers. For blogging, a regular schedule is the most important thing and 2-3 new posts a week is a great goal. Try to update your Facebook wall once a day and ensure that your content is just an interesting tidbit. Pay attention to how many likes and comments you get on each post to see what works for your audience. Finally, try to Tweet several times a day, and be sure to respond to all comments and replies.

Certainly building an online platform is time consuming but it's also vital in today's world. While there has never before been such competition for people's attention, it has also never been easier to find and connect with people who would love your book. 

To see how several Chronicle Books authors are putting social media networks and tools to use, check out the following links:

Lisa Congdon
lisacongdon.com
Lisa's blog
facebook.com/Lisa Congdon Art + Illustration
twitter.com/lisacongdon

Christian Robinson
theartoffun.com/
instagram.com/theartoffun

Blogs

Blogging can be a great way to build important online connections and gain an early following. Take note of the content you like to see online and ask yourself why you like it. A blog's success hinges on execution. Your blog posts should be as irresistible and exciting as your book—and they should tie back to you as a brand and your forthcoming title.

To get started, download our Blogging 101 guide. This will explain how to sign up for a free account with Blogger or WordPress, best practices for blogging, and how to build your following.

However you choose to run your blog, keep these guidelines in mind:

  • Update frequently; the more content you provide the better. Ideally add something new once a day, or at the least three times a week. Otherwise you risk losing readers.
  • Use images and links to spice up your blog. When you link to other websites and blogs, they often reciprocate, driving their readers to your site.
  • Keep your posts concise and interesting; position yourself as a resource and comment about topics that will interest your readers and draw attention to your expertise and title.
  • Focus on providing information that's relevant to your title without being just about your title. Blog readers look for authenticity and usefulness, not salesmanship, and avoid sites that are just for self-promotion.
  • Keep the tone conversational, don't overpromote yourself or your title.
  • Pose questions at the end of your blog posts to encourage a dialog between you and your readers.
  • You may want to offer your book or gift product as a prize every now and then. That's also a great way to inspire a back and forth communication between you and your fans.

It's important to tie content on your blog back to your book, even if your publication day still feels like years away. Readers are hungry for a peek inside the entire publishing process—from signing the contract to editing the first pass pages to publication day. 

Amazon Author Central

The Amazon page for your book is a critical sales tool—and it's important that you've done everything you can to optimize it.

(From Amazon.com)

Author Central is a free service provided by Amazon to allow authors to reach more readers, promote their books, and help build a better Amazon bookstore. As an author, you are part of a special community at Amazon. At Author Central, you have the opportunity to share the most up-to-date information about yourself and your work with your readers—you can view and edit your bibliography, add photos, a biography, a video, events, and a blog to a personal profile, and view timely sales information and Customer Reviews of your books in order to track your merchandising efforts.

Your profile information is shared with your readers through Author Pages. Author Pages are unique Amazon destinations that feature all books from a particular author, and ideally, content that you add through Author Central. We know that readers often shop by author; Author Pages give them a new way to browse, making it easy to find their favorite authors and discover new ones.

The only qualification for joining Author Central is having written a book available for purchase on Amazon.com. We recommend signing up for Author Central with an e-mail address that your publishers recognize. Once you register, we'll contact them to approve your account. If this e-mail address isn't associated with an Amazon.com customer account, Author Central will create one for you when you join.

Here are some examples of Chronicle authors who have found success using AmazonConnect:

Lisa Katayama, author of Urawaza

Steve Sando, author of Heirloom Beans

Details of the Amazon Author Central sign up process

First, ensure that your Internet browser is current with JavaScript enabled.

To register you for Author Central, Amazon will need to verify your e-mail address and your body of work. This verification process enables us to protect our authors and customers. First, we either connect you as an author with your Amazon.com customer account by verifying your e-mail address, or invite you to create a new customer account. Then, we verify with a trusted third-party that you are an author whose work is for sale on Amazon.com.

Step 1: Create an Amazon.com Account or sign in to an existing one
Click the ‘Join now' button to begin the Author Central registration process. To sign up, you will need an Amazon.com customer account. If you have an Amazon.com account associated with an e-mail address recognized by your publishers, enter your e-mail address and Amazon.com password. You also can choose “No, I am a new customer” to create a new account with your preferred e-mail address.

Step 2: Choose a Name and find your books
We'll suggest a list of books whose authors match the name you've provided for your Amazon.com account. This name is usually the one you use in your work. The name you list here is the one we will list on the Author Page. Select an author from the list or click “No, I am someone else” to enter your author name and search again. If you can't find your books, you'll be able to search for them by ISBN and title, or contact Amazon to help you.

Step 3: Verify your e-mail address and get approved
Amazon will send an e-mail to the address you register with for Author Central. Simply open the e-mail and click on the link provided. We'll then try to make a match between your customer history and our books catalog. If we can't, we'll contact your publishers to approve you. While you wait for approval some features will be unavailable, but you'll be able to add photos and a biography. We'll post them to the Author Page once you're approved.

Step 4: Complete Your Registration
Once you're approved, start adding information and tracking your customer activity! Do you already have a blog outside of Amazon? Use RSS to surface your existing blog directly to your Amazon customers. These posts will show up in your Author Central blog, on your product pages, and on your customers' Amazon.com home pages. Also, update your bibliography and add Editorial Reviews, upcoming events, and a video.

For more information about Author Central visit http://authorcentral.amazon.com.

Video Book Trailers

Videos, like photos, can contextualize your work and attract interest to your title. A book trailer is especially helpful for books that are hard to explain with just words. 

As with blogs, today's online audience is sophisticated and an amateur video could be a turnoff. If you don't have experience filming and editing a video, reach out to friends to see if they are more experienced in this realm. Your marketing manager can also suggest some professionals who have experience making book trailers. And remember to keep it short. Instagram video is limited to 15 seconds and Facebook considers anything over 30 seconds to be a full view. Try to keep your trailer to a minute or less.

You can see all Chronicle Books videos on our official YouTube channel.

Online Retailers

The Amazon page for your book is a critical sales tool—and it's important that you've done everything you can to optimize it. Join Amazon Author Central and customize how your Amazon page looks. You can also become an Amazon Affiliate or a Barnes and Noble affiliate to earn a commission on sales you send to those sites.

Promoting Your Work Offline

  • Mention it in your email signature. For example:
    Coming in May, my new book: "The Greatest Book Ever Written" published by Chronicle Books.
  • Register with a Speaker's Bureau, especially if you specialize in a particular field where you can be an expert source for seminars, presentations, and tradeshows. Many events will combine your engagement with a book signing.
  • Call bookstores in your area and places you are visiting and offer to do a reading. Be sure to let your publicist know.
  • Add information on your title to any bylines or credits you have when freelance writing or for appearances.
  • Instruct your fans and email list to go to bookstores and request your book, if it's not already stocked.
  • Create postcards and stickers promoting your title, and have them on the ready. Leave them at bookstores and hand them out to everyone you meet.
  • In some cases Chronicle Books will send you an author business card with information about your book. Make sure to hand these out when you talk about your title to influential people and potential booksellers.
  • If a store is carrying your title, introduce yourself and offer to sign copies.

Media Appearances

Your publicist may set up media appearances or interviews to coincide with your pub date. Here are a few tips to help you successfully promote your title.

  1. Definitely, definitely, definitely get familiar with the outlet that's featuring you. Watch the program, read the reporter, familiarize yourself with the show or publication's format. You'll be better prepared and will feel more comfortable.
  2. Develop an elevator pitch (a quick, one-sentence explanation of your book and why it matters) and 3 sound bites (quick examples or explanations that relate back to the book) that you can use and refer to often. It's better to be repetitive and drive your point home than to ramble on.
  3. Remember: this is not a conversation, it's an interview, so follow the interviewer's lead; but don't hold back. If you have a great story to share, don't wait to be asked. Try to work it into your answer, but be careful not to dominate the conversation.
  4. Most importantly, relate everything back to the question you're answering and mention the title of your book or gift product as often as possible-this is the whole reason for the interview!
    • If you are being interviewed for the Internet: keep your answers short, quick, and to the point.
    • If you are being interviewed by a print/newspaper reporter: give them a good quote that can be used elsewhere (for example: the book jacket, press materials).
    • If you are being interviewed on the radio: answer questions quickly and succinctly. And remember, the program will often replay a sound bite so give them something good to use! For early morning shows, pacing back and forth while you talk can give you that extra boost of energy you need to sound alert at 4 AM. Find out how much time you have on the air, so you can pace yourself accordingly.
    • If you are being interviewed on television: wear clothes that make you look and feel good. Avoid striped or white shirts (which can make you look washed out). Consider the atmosphere and mood of the program and dress to suit. Usually something with clean lines and colors is better than something flashy or busy. Your goal is to look, sound, and be crisp. Find out if they provide hair and make-up in advance of arriving. Also, ask the producer or interviewer how the title will be presented (will it be up on the screen, displayed on the table, or should you bring your own copy). The more visuals, the better.
  5. Practice. Have a friend pose questions to you and practice answering them. Better yet, videotape yourself!
  6. Smile and have fun. You're there for a reason—feel confident and proud of that!

If you feel you need or want more training there are professional media trainers out there. We recommend Dick Butterfield.

How to be a Successful Panel Guest

Congratulations! You’ve been invited to participate in an author panel. That means the event organizers are excited about you, your book and what you have to say.

Panels are a fun and convivial experience. The moderator, your fellow panelists and the audience are rooting for you and want you to be awesome. But, like with any public speaking opportunity, panels can be stressful and there may be the rare occasion where the comments from an audience member (or even a fellow panelist) might challenge you or throw you off your game.

Here are our Top 10 Tips for preparing for your panel and making it a great showcase for you and your book.

  1. Be Your Brand. What impression do you want the audience to take away about you? Come up with three words you’d like the moderator, fellow panelists and audience to use when describing you and your book. That’s your mantra for the panel.
  2. Do Your Homework. Your Publicity and Marketing team will let you know as early as possible the panel format, themes and objectives, A/V opportunities, and the names and recent books of your fellow panelists and moderator. Prepare for the panel with these details in mind.
  3. Take Ten.  Arrive at least ten minutes before the start of your panel. Introduce yourself to the moderator and fellow panelists, scope out where you will be sitting, and set up and test your presentation. Bring a copy of your latest or upcoming book to display in front of you.
  4. Sit Up and Speak Up. The folks in the back of the room want to see and hear you! If you’re using a hand-held microphone, sit up and keep your shoulders straight. If the mic is stationary, you may be hunched and not in an optimum posture to project so try to get within an inch of the microphone.  
  5. Be Considerate. Try not to hog the mic or exhaust the question on your turn; engage the other members of the panel. Answer questions that spark your interest, but don’t answer them all. When possible, structure your comments to build on the comments of your fellow panelists. If you don’t have anything positive or relevant to contribute to a particular question, silence is golden.
  6. Remember the Topic and Tell Your Story. The audience was drawn to the panel because of the topic. Tailor your talking points to the subject at hand. Have a few key messages in your back pocket. Literally, write them down and practice them out loud. And remember; don’t say “my book.” Always use the book’s title when referring to your work.
  7. Build a Bridge. Any question or topic can be bridged back to the message you want to deliver. You can bridge away from a question that isn’t directly related to your topic or book, or towards what you came to say. Your Publicist or Marketing Manager can help you with a list of bridging phrases, or schedule a pre-panel practice session.
  8. Read the Room. Look at your fellow panelists and the audience members when they’re speaking. It’s okay to take notes, but don’t disengage. Repeat the question back for the audience before you answer it. Even if the question comes from a moderator or fellow panelist, address your answer to the audience. Watch the audience for glazed eyes, and the moderator for signaling nods or gestures.
  9. Smile! Make it a conscious act to smile. It might not feel 100% natural, but it makes you look engaged and approachable, and the act of smiling triggers the brain to relax and have more fun. Enjoy the opportunity to talk about yourself, your book and interact with your fans. The topic may be serious, but audiences respond to speakers who don’t take themselves too seriously. Have fun!
  10. Be Sociable. Tweet, Instagram and/or Facebook before and after the panel. If you have a pal or colleague in the audience, ask them to take a photo during the panel that you can share later. Follow and tag your fellow panelists, moderator and host organization or event. Use the event’s hashtags.
  11. BONUS TIP! 
    Give Thanks
    . Your moderator does a lot of work to prepare for the panel. Thank them with a hug or a handshake right after the event, and as soon as you can with an email or handwritten note.
  12. Additional Tips and Information for Children's Book Authors and Illustrators

    Developing a Dynamic Children's Book Presentation

    • The key is to be prepared. Know your audience and their age group, and the format of your program as much as possible before your event. Contact the host of the event and ask them what kinds of programs they think work best. Outline and practice your presentation so you know what points you will cover and can speak without reading from notes.
    • In addition to reading your book aloud, it is often interesting for the audience to hear about how your book came to be, your inspiration, any interesting anecdotes, etc. If you also illustrated the book, it's often fun to demonstrate your illustration process at the event, or even make it an interactive "how-to" drawing session. You can also use flip charts or slides to engage your audience (slides and video presentations should only be used with older-children or adult audiences—young children need to be personally engaged).
    • Give your audience plenty of opportunities to participate in the discussion. For example, in discussing the writing process, you might want to start a story and have kids tell you what should come next in the plot, or how one of the characters would react to a situation. Leave time for questions and comments from the audience.
    • Just remember, practice makes perfect! Don't expect to hit it out of the park the first time you're at the plate. The more you present, the better you'll be at it.

    Arranging School Visits

    • The best place to begin arranging author appearances is in your own community. If you (or family members or friends) grew up or went to school in your area, consider contacting your/their grade, middle, or high schools. You are almost certain to get a warm welcome!
    • Write letters to local school librarians and tell them you're available for events. Include information about you and your book, and some information about what you would do for your presentation, including how your program could fit into a classroom environment or relate to thematic or topical areas of study.
    • Ask high school teachers, area reading specialists, and professors at local colleges or universities if they would be interested in having you talk with their students about writing or illustrating. Also consider speaking at colleges that offer children's literature classes. You could even offer to teach a writing or illustrating course.
    • Contact schools in cities or regions that feature prominently in your book, or relate in some way to its subject matter. Write to schools in those communities and ask if you can get involved in local events.
    • When it comes time for schools to order books from us, please contact the Author/Event Order Specialist at Hachette: AuthorEvents@hbgusa.com or 800-759-0190.
    • Skype is another great resource to consider when planning author visits beyond your hometown. Skype is a free video conferencing tool that allows you to see your audience and chat with them live from anywhere in the world. Learn more on the Skype site and talk to your marketing manager and publicist to coordinate with your schedule.
    • And please keep us informed of your school events schedule so we can help out in any way we can!

    Developing a Classroom-Friendly Presentation

    • Many of the points above in the Developing a Dynamic Presentation section apply here, with a few additional points to consider specifically for school visits.
    • Adjusting your presentation specifically to age group is particularly important for school events, as you'll most likely be presenting to a particular grade classroom rather than a mixed group which you can get at a bookstore event. You'll of course need a different presentation if you are giving a presentation as part of a whole-school assembly.
    • Ask teachers in advance whether there are special topics they would like you to address during your visit. Then make sure you are well prepared to give an informative and entertaining presentation. You can also make sure that teachers ask that the students read your book and prepare questions in advance, to make your visit more fun and meaningful for everyone.
    • Using picture books for older grades—4th, 5th, 6th, 7th—can be a wonderful way to broaden the audience for your book. But don't expect teachers in those grades to know already how they might adapt your book to their needs.

    Honorariums

    • Some schools will be able to pay an honorarium fee plus travel expenses to have a specific author appear at their school. Many others have limited budgets and are happy to find a local author who will charge less for participating in an event.
    • The lower your honorarium and the more flexible/available you are for author appearances, the easier it will be for you to arrange school events. New authors should consider doing several pro bono events to gain experience. Once you are established and are able to provide references from previous visits, you can begin asking for speaking fees. Then try setting your rates lower than average ($300-$1,000) until you are more established on the lecture circuit.

    Organizations and Other Resources for Children's Literature

    • The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) acts as a network for the exchange of knowledge between writers, illustrators, editors, publishers, agents, librarians, educators, booksellers and others involved with literature for young people. They sponsor dozens of regional conferences and events throughout the world, publish a bi-monthly newsletter, offer awards and grants for works in progress, and provide many informational publications on the art and business of writing and selling written, illustrated, and electronic material. Their membership package comes with a publication called Going Back to School, which thoroughly covers everything you need to know about school visits. Refer to the Directory at the end of this handbook for more resources.
    • The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world. ALA is the umbrella organization to different membership divisions including the Association of Library Services to Children (ALSC), YALSA, ASSL and more. They administer the top children's book awards programs in the U.S. Librarians are frequently the best and most fervent advocates for children's books!
    • IndieBound (formerly Book Sense) is a wing of the American Booksellers Association, the leading independent book retail trade association. On their website you can find independent bookstores near you, discover recent Book Sense Children's Picks (independent booksellers favorite books) and more.

    A Few More Things You Should Know (aka the FAQs)

    What is a pub date?

    A publication date, or "pub date," marks the start of your publicity and review coverage. It's usually on the first of the month, four-six weeks (or more) after the product is finished to give time for it to ship to stores and reviewers. We want to make sure there are copies on the shelves the day the reviews appear. When appropriate, we set the pub date to coincide with an event or anniversary, like Mother's Day, Father's Day, Christmas, or Black History month.

    Also see Production

    When can I expect my author copies?

    Your editor will send you a copy of your title directly from the printer. Once products are in the warehouse—as many as four weeks, or longer if your title's printed overseas, after you get your first copy—your editor will send you the gratis author copies promised in your contract (usually 10). If you have an agent, they may be sent to your agent instead, along with your agent's gratis copies. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your author copies, contact your editor.

    How do I order more books?

    HOW TO ORDER AUTHOR COPIES

    For your very first order of author copies with Chronicle Books, please email Tracy Turpen at: tracy_turpen@chroniclebooks.com. She will help you set up an account and get your first order processed with your author discount. After your first order, you may call the Hachette Book Group Customer Service directly at 800-759-0190 and place your order.

    A few points to consider when ordering books:

    • It generally takes 7-10 days for your books to arrive. And authors are responsible for all shipping costs.

    • If the books need to arrive by a certain date, let your publicist know. They can prioritize orders that are events related.

    • Please bear in mind that books ordered using your author discount are meant for personal use and not for resale. In rare cases, your contract may stipulate that you are permitted to personally sell your books. If so, please set up a retail account, which is separate from your author account. Your marketing manager can assist you with this.

    • Chronicle Books requires full payment via credit card at the time of purchase on all author orders.

    HOW TO ORDER BOOKS PUBLISHED BY CHRONICLE (NOT YOUR BOOK)

    We love our authors! If you’d like to buy books by other authors (not written or illustrated by you), you may place an order on our website and use promo code CBLOVESAUTHORS for 40% off + free ground shipping. Please note that this promo code is only for our authors, and all orders are checked to ensure that they were placed by a Chronicle Books author. 

    Where will my title be sold?

    Our sales team sells your title into the following channels (as appropriate):
    Trade: Barnes & Noble and Amazon
    Mass Market: Warehouse clubs (Costco, BJ's, Sam's) and mass market retailers (Target and Best Buy)
    Specialty Accounts: Papyrus, Pottery Barn, Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, American Eagle, Restoration Hardware, department stores, and Internet retailers
    Independent Trade and Specialty Stores: Local bookstores and mom-n-pop gift stores
    International Accounts: We sell our titles and translations of our titles to countries around the world. Some of our largest international markets include the UK, Canada, Australia, and Japan.

    Also see Sales Conference.

    Will my book be sold to libraries and schools?

    Indeed! Our sales reps sell to schools and public libraries, as well as colleges and universities. You'll find details on the back page of our catalog.

    How can I find out about my sales?

    Twice a year, you will receive royalty summing up your sales, returns, and any rights and licenses we've sold. In short, it's all the money your title has made during the last six-month period and how it all stacks up against the advance you received for the project. Our accounting department sends these out twice a year—in April for the July-December sales and October for January-June—to you, your agent, or your packager (whoever's name is on the contract). If you've done multiple projects for Chronicle Books, they will all be listed separately in your royalty statement.

    You may notice that at first you have a negative balance on your royalty statement. This simply means that your cut of sales hasn't yet exceeded your advance. Once it does, you or your agent will start receiving royalty checks. Hooray.

    Your royalties are spelled out in your contract, but if you do have questions or concerns about your statement, contact your editor.

    If you absolutely can't wait for April or October to get your sales update, you can ask your editor to tell you the latest.

    Can my title be sold at a specific store?

    Maybe. Send ideas and suggestions for possible retailers to your editor, who will forward it to the sales department. We can't guarantee that all stores will say yes, but we're happy to try.

    What do I do if my local bookstore or specialty retailer wants to do an event?

    Contact your marketing manager or publicist. They'll coordinate with the sales rep that works with that store or region. Bookstores that regularly carry Chronicle Books will order books for events through their regular sales rep. You don't need to be involved in these transactions.

    Still, it's important to note that as much fun as they can be, author events are often disappointing. Stores focus on big-name authors who can draw a crowd because of their instant name recognition. If you don't already have experience in this area, here are some questions to consider before doing an event:

    • Do I have friends, family, and co-workers who will not only come out, but also purchase a book (making the event worthwhile for the bookseller)?
    • What can I contribute to make the event more appealing, such as slides or props?
    • Do I have contacts in the media who will help promote the event?
    • Have I done this before, and was it successful?
    • Do I feel comfortable speaking in front of crowds?

    Note: if you're an author or illustrator of a children's book, click here for more information about school and library events.

    Contact your marketing manager or publicist. They'll coordinate with the sales rep that works with that store or region. Bookstores that regularly carry Chronicle Books will order books for events through their regular sales rep. You don't need to be involved in these transactions.

    Who do I call to arrange for my title to be sold at an upcoming speaking event?

    If your talk relates directly to the title, then a speaking event can be a good opportunity to promote and sell your title. When arranging the event, ask if it's possible to have a bookseller there to handle sales. If yes, send the details to your marketing manager or publicist, who will make the necessary arrangements with the sales department. Or ask them for help locating a local bookseller for your event. We can't guarantee that we will find an interested bookseller, but we will do our best.

    Here's what we'll need from you:

    • Notification at least six weeks prior to the event.
    • All the details for the event—what, when, where, and how many people are expected to attend.
    • Contact information for the event organizer, including telephone number and email address.

    If the sponsoring organization would prefer to sell the books directly, they can purchase them from our fulfillment company, Hachette Book Group. They may contact Hachette via phone at 800.759.0190 or send an email to AuthorEvents@hbgusa.com. Orders for author events will receive special terms of 50% off 24+ units with the option of returning any unsold copies.

    Orders will generally need to be prepaid but if the organization would like to apply for terms, Hachette can walk them through the process. Orders should be placed no fewer than 3 weeks prior to an event, allowing two weeks for standard delivery. If an order is placed on a tighter schedule, an expedited shipping charge may apply.

    Can I sell my book myself at an event?

    We prefer to arrange for a bookstore to sell books, but in cases where this is not possible you can sell the books yourself, by ordering them from Chronicle Books using your author account. This is one of those exceptions that we referred to in the author copies section, and you will need to get authorization from your marketing manager or editor before confirming the event.

    How can I promote my title at an event or conference that I am attending but not speaking at?

    In some cases, we can create a flyer or postcard for an author to hand out at an event, or to their media contacts. Or you can create one yourself. Call your marketing manager or publicist for more information.

    Will you cover my expenses for an out-of-town event?

    We will only cover your travel expenses if it has been agreed upon in advance by your marketing manager or publicist or it is specified in your contract. To get reimbursed for expenses, you'll need to submit an invoice along with original receipts. It's all spelled out in our Author Travel Guidelines, which your publicist will send you the before you do any travel we're supporting.

    What do I do if I can't find my title in stores?

    It can be disconcerting to walk into a store that should have your title and they don't. Just remember that it makes us even madder! Email your editor, who will get in touch with the appropriate sales rep for immediate follow up. Unfortunately, whether or not a store carries our products is sometimes beyond our control, especially with large accounts like Barnes and Noble and Borders. Though we do our best to sell your title everywhere, ultimately it's the buyers who decide what to carry in their store, and the buyers who are responsible for reordering when items go out of stock.

    If I see my title in a store, should I sign it?

    Yes, please do! Signed books often get stickered and are given preferred placement within the stores. Start by introducing yourself to the bookstore manager or sales staff to make sure it's OK with them. For better service, avoid peak hours. You will make more of an impression if the bookseller is available to chat and get to know you.

    Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com has the wrong information about my book and/or lists that the book isn't available for 4-6 weeks. Who do I call?

    First check your page-viewing options. For example, on Amazon.com you can choose how to display your search results from a drop-down menu (sort by best-sellers, relevance, price, publication date, etc.). If you do not choose "sort by publication date," for example, your most recent book may come up as the tenth book in the list, even though it is the most recent one published and the one you would like to actively promote.

    You'll also notice that under a book title Amazon.com lists an estimated shipping time: within 24 hours, 1-2 business days, or sometimes 4-6 weeks. This is based on a complex algorithm that Amazon.com uses and we cannot change. While it is unsettling to see 4-6 weeks for delivery under your recently published book, unfortunately there is nothing we can do to change it. However, the 4-6 week delivery estimation often changes to a more reasonable delivery time within a week or so for recently published books.

    If you have any questions or concerns about Amazon.com or B&N.com online content, contact your editor.

    Can I expect a launch party?

    As much as we'd love to fête all our authors, we don't typically throw launch parties because they don't usually generate sales or publicity results. We need to reserve our promotional funds for more effective marketing programs.

    Will I be interviewed about my title?

    If we believe your title will make a good topic for media interviews, we'll try to arrange print, radio, TV, and/or online appearances to coincide with your pub date. You'll be able to make suggestions and list your personal media contacts—including people who might be willing to interview you—in your Author Questionnaire. If a media request comes directly to you, even if it's from a friend or colleague, please let us know so we can coordinate it with our many other efforts.

    See also Author Questionnaire.

    Will you be sending me on a publicity tour?

    Whether or not you are sent on a publicity tour depends on many factors, and opportunities for publicity tours are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. If you have suggestions, let your marketing manager or publicist know. We are recently getting much better results from on-line marketing—much more hits and buzz; much less effort and returned books. A book tour may sound like the ticket, but just wait till you show up at a signing with six people, all of whom you know.

    Will you send my title out for review considerations?

    Yes, for long lead publications (i.e. glossy monthly magazines including InStyle, Glamour, O magazine, etc.) we send advance copies or manuscripts up to six months prior to publication date. A few weeks prior to pub date we will send copies out for review to "short lead" regional and national media, including Internet publications, blogs (when appropriate), TV and radio producers, newspapers, and weekly magazines. Your publicist will share his or her review strategies with you.

    Can you send my book or gift product to so-and-so?

    Yes, if you know a reviewer, editor, or media contact who is interested in promoting your book, please email the contact information (including name, publication, phone, and email) to your publicist. You should also include these details in your Author Questionnaire. Gifts for friends and family members should come from your author copies.

    See also Author Questionnaire.

    Can I make some calls to the magazine editors you sent the book to?

    No, please don't. Editors frown on being contacted directly by authors and have been known to cancel coverage as a result. If you're worried that we haven't followed up with a certain editor or book reviewer, let us know.

    Will I get copies of all reviews?

    We subscribe to a clipping service that sends us U.S. reviews for all our products. As you can imagine, this results in quite a few clippings, which why we can't automatically pass them on to our authors. You can request a copy, however, through our publicity coordinator. Remember your publicist is almost as excited about your media coverage as you are and will email you links and hits as they come in.

    Why hasn't my book been reviewed in a particular publication?

    There are many reasons a book does or doesn't get reviewed. The biggest being the sheer volume of books most editors receive compared to the small amount of space typically allotted for reviews. The same goes for gift products. We do everything we can to make sure each title is sent, received, and stands out from the crowd. But it's no guarantee, which is why your own marketing efforts are so essential to getting attention.

    Will my book be submitted for literary awards and prizes?

    Yes, your editor or your publicist will submit all books for appropriate awards and prizes. If you have specific suggestions or requests, contact our publicity coordinator. See Marketing & Publicity Contacts.

    Will my book be submitted to literary festivals?

    Only if appropriate. If you have suggestions please let your marketing manager or publicist know.

    How do I get an electronic file of the cover of my project to post on my website?

    Please contact your publicist or publicity coordinator for all electronic file requests. See Marketing & Publicity Contacts.

    Can I post excerpts on my website?

    In most cases it's fine to post an excerpt on your website. It should be from the final, edited manuscript and for promotional purposes only. Still, you'll need to contact your marketing manager or publicist in advance to make sure there are no conflicts. To receive electronic files contact your publicist or publicity coordinator. See Marketing & Publicity Contacts.

    Can I get a copy of my book's press releasae?

    Yes, your publicist can get you a copy of your press release. All we ask is that you don't send it out to the media without prior written approval from your publicist. This is to avoid duplicating our publicity outreach efforts.

    Can I write my press release?

    While we welcome your thoughts and input, the job of creating all publicity and marketing materials will be handled by the Chronicle Books publicity and marketing department.

    Can I hire my own publicist?

    Yes, that is always an option. We suggest that you run the idea by your marketing manager or publicist for their comments before proceeding.

    Will my book be serialized / excerpted?

    The publicity department will try to sell and place excerpts when appropriate. An excerpt published before a book's pub date is called "first serial"; after the pub date it is considered a "second serial." Your contract includes details about how you'll be paid for serialization. And your publicist can help you with any other questions you may have. As with all media requests, refer anyone asking about serializing or excerpting your book to your publicist. This ensures that you get compensated and we don't duplicate any publicist efforts.

    What level of publicity can I expect over the lifespan of my book?

    Typically the marketing/publicity period for your book will last three to six months, starting with the pub date. Pitching a new title begins four to six months prior to the publication date, and the reviews sometimes appear for months after publication, as momentum builds.

    However, most book review sections will want only the newest books for their section. Unfortunately, because of the volume of books review editors receive each month, if your book doesn't make it in during the assigned publication season, more than likely it will not be selected for review in that publication.

    This doesn't mean that your book won't be reviewed or mentioned again. Sometimes previously published books get picked up by editors in relation to a story. We will sometimes do a special mailing highlighting backlist titles for seasonal events, and will re-promote a backlist (previously published) title that becomes newsworthy.

    Similarly, author interviews and profiles usually appear within the first two months of a book's publication. Interview requests may come in much later, if a book or author becomes newsworthy after publication (i.e. by winning a major award, or because the subject matter relates to news of the day).

    But I still have questions...

    If you have any other questions, comments or concerns, please don't hesitate to call any of us in publicity and marketing any time. Or talk to your editor. We look forward to working with you to promote your new book!

    Author Expenses and Travel Agreement

    Author Expenses

    While we make every effort to provide financial support for expenses incurred during the promotion of your book, Chronicle Books will reimburse expenses ONLY if they are approved, in advance, by your publicist or marketing manager. Expenses can include, but are not limited to, event costs, such as food, drink, and marketing materials, or, in the case of travel, airfare, hotel, per diem meal allowances, and transport and mileage costs. For cookbook authors, there may be additional expenses such as ingredients and stylists for demos, which are subject to the same guidelines.

    If you've pre-arranged for reimbursement of expenses, you'll need to submit an invoice (please see the end of this document for a sample) that includes your name, mailing address, taxpayer ID/social security number, and amount due. You must also include an explanation of expenses, a chronological list of cities visited (if applicable), expenses broken out by category (food, taxi, hotel, etc.), and ALL receipts attached to plain white paper (not simply stapled to the invoice). Please note that we cannot reimburse you without receipts—the IRS requires them.

    Generally speaking, it takes about two weeks to a month for Chronicle Books to process an invoice and issue a check.

    Author Travel

    Like many other publishers, Chronicle Books has dramatically scaled back on travel and tours as we continue to evaluate their effectiveness in relation to prohibitive expenses. That said, there may be opportunities for you to travel to promote your book, either on a coordinated tour or as part of personal initiatives. Should strategic travel opportunities arise, your publicist will coordinate with you regarding specific logistics, but please do take a moment to review the guidelines below in order to avoid surprises and to help keep costs as reasonable as possible.

    Chronicle Books now books all travel arrangements through Egencia, Expedia's Corporate Travel Service. This allows your publicist to book flights and hotels and to reserve rental cars on your behalf. Through this service Chronicle directly pays for flights and hotel room charges. You'll be reimbursed for rental car fees, as well as some ancillary hotel charges like room service and Internet access.

    In many cases, it is preferable for authors to book their own travel in order to maintain maximum control over specific preferences, or to amass airline miles and other incentive rewards. If you prefer to handle your own arrangements, please use your personal credit card and submit an invoice for reimbursement.

    Flights
    Flights should be selected according to the following criteria: your convenience, the needs of the tour, and cost. All flights are coach class. If you require first or business class, you may make arrangements via your publicist and pay the difference. If you require a particular airline, please alert your publicist. We are happy to try to accommodate you but, again, you will need to pay the difference if your airline's tickets are more expensive.

    Hotel
    Like flights, hotels should be selected according to your convenience, the needs of the tour, and cost. If you require a specific hotel in a city, we are happy to book it for you. However, if that hotel is more expensive than the one we would have selected for you, you must pay the difference. Chronicle is required to stay within the budget of $125-$250 per day for hotel rooms.

    When you check into your hotel, you will need to provide a valid credit card for all ancillary charges. Please make sure to get a copy of your bill from the hotel to submit with your other expenses for reimbursement. If you do not have a credit card, please alert your publicist, who will make alternate arrangements.

    Chronicle Books will reimburse you for reasonable expenses incurred at the hotel:

    • If you are traveling for Chronicle Books for more than one week, we will reimburse you for use of the hotel laundry services
    • Please use personal cell phones or long distance cards for long distance phone calls, and submit the itemized bill to Chronicle for reimbursement. Chronicle will not cover the exorbitant costs hotels often attach to local and long distance phone calls
    • Please note that Chronicle Books does not pay for movies or cocktails at the hotel bar or for refreshments at the hotel in-room mini-bars
    • Chronicle Books will pay for Internet fees incurred at the hotel only if it is determined necessary and approved by your publicist

    Meals
    Chronicle Books will reimburse you for all reasonable meal expenses up to $75 per day. Chronicle Books can cover the cost of your meals only, not those of a traveling partner or a guest. Please keep the receipts for all your meals.

    Ground Transportation
    If you use your personal vehicle to drive to events, Chronicle Books will reimburse you for wear and tear. Please consult your publicist regarding current per-mile rates.

    If you are on the road, and have a number of interviews within a city on one day, and/or if they are tightly timed, your publicist will hire an escort for you. Remember the escort is your friend and, because of his/her media connections, a good friend to Chronicle Books.

    In most cities, if there is no escort, please take cabs. Please remember to get receipts.

    In some cities (such as Los Angeles), you may be more comfortable with a rental car; if this is the case, please discuss with your publicist. While Chronicle Books can reserve a rental car through our Expedia Corporate Service, the charges for the rental car should be placed on your credit card, and Chronicle Books will reimburse you. If you are renting a car, please remember to bring your driver's license as well.

    Chronicle Books does not pay for limousine or car services.

    Reimbursement
    To be reimbursed for your tour expenses, please submit an Author Travel Invoice, with ORIGINAL receipts attached, to your publicist within two weeks after the last day of your travel. If you do not send us your receipts within 25 days, we will not reimburse you. It is imperative that we submit all author travel expenses to our accounting department within this timeframe.

    Thank you for understanding the limitations we face and for working with us to keep travel costs in check. We hope to work together to make all promotional experiences as rewarding as possible. If you have any questions about your travel expenses, please don't hesitate to ask.

    Click here to view a sample invoice.

    Click here to download the Invoice Template (Excel doc).