Conference Tips: Composing the One-Sheet


As I am prepping my work for attending the ACFW conference this year, I am composing my first one-sheet ever. While I have written several business-like literary proposals, I have found that the one-sheets allow for a bit more creativity than the proposals.

I have studied several different one-sheets, both online and peeked at a few at conferences, and have composed a list of what exactly it should entail.

Elements of the One-Sheet: 

  1. Pick a design. For me, I think a simple, easy to read design is better than a one-sheet with too many elements. You want it to be easy to scan and printed in a relaxing color, nothing too bright or too dark.

Note: Be sure to print it a few days early as the print color may vary from the screen color. This will help avoid the last minute panic of your beautiful light violet one-sheet printing out as magenta or deep purple and give you time to remedy it!

  1. Title of work being pitched. Only one book per one-sheet.
  1. A picture that you feel depicts your novel. Think of it as what you would want your cover to convey when your book is published. To be honest, I felt a wee bit silly at first adding a picture to my one-sheet, but after searching and finding the perfect one, I truly felt that it did indeed capture my novel and that it enhanced rather than detracted from my pitch, so have fun with it!

Important to note: Be aware of copyrights on photos as you don’t want to accidentally use a photo illegally. One good freebie website that allows you to use their photos legally is

  1. Your back cover copy to serve as a light pitch. For info on how to write the BCC, click here.
  1. Your author bio with contact info. This will give a very brief blurb of your credentials and help the agent/editor remember you.
  1. Your author headshot. While I didn’t add this to my one-sheet this go round, I do see the merit in having it included as it will even further help the agent/editor remember you after seeing 100’s of potential clients at the conference.
  1. Your agent’s info. If you are pitching to editors, you want to be sure they know how to contact you to request your proposal. You want to make it as easy as possible for them to find your work!

Important to note: Do not attach your sample chapters to the one-sheet. Your proposal should include your samples. The one-sheet is simply an easy way for the agent/editor to remember your pitch or to request a proposal later if they do not request it on the spot as they are inundated with pitches at conferences and need to mull it over.

Happy Writing!

Photo Cred: 

About Grace Hitchcock

Grace Hitchcock's first novella, The Widow of St. Charles Avenue, released in Barbour Publishing’s The Second Chance Brides Collection August 2017. Her second novella will release in Barbour Publishing’s The Southern Belle Brides Collection in 2018. She has a Masters in Creative Writing and a Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in History. Grace is a Louisiana Southerner living in Colorado with her husband, Dakota, and newborn son.

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