Press Your Message

Can you use the power of the press to spread your news about a product, a milestone in your business or your writing life? It is a skill for every writer to learn about and develop. It will involve learning the skill of creating a press release.

There are some great online resources for you to develop this skill. I appreciate the work of Bill Stoller and his perspective in Publicity Insider. Check out this site to get his insight about how to write a press release. Also sign up for a sample of his newsletter. I’ve found each issue loaded with valuable information.

Why do you want to press your message with a press release? If you craft a press release, send it to the right person at the right time, they can quickly spread your news. Notice the conditions that I included (right person, right time, right shape of release). I’m letting people know about the launch of Whalin Literary Agency. This week I wrote a short press release, then sent it to a few key publications. Like a great deal of the work, there are no guarantees that anyone or any publication will use your material. My release was picked up in several online publications which reached thousands of people with this news.

Just to manage your expectations, press releases don’t always work. I was discussing this aspect yesterday and this person mentioned sending out a release about the addition of a new service. No one picked up on the news. It’s a gamble and involves many different factors outside of your control. You can control writing an excellent press release then sending it to targeted publications. Much of this type of work operates on the same principle: do what you can do and see what happens. It’s like the manuscripts which some writers stick into their desk drawers. That work will never reach anyone because it is not getting out to the marketplace.

7 Responses to “Press Your Message”

  1. Joanne Brokaw Says:

    All the best on your new venture, Terry! I wish you great success.

  2. ~ Brandilyn Collins Says:

    Hey, Terry, congrats on the agency. Great to know there’s another agent out there. See ya at Mt. Hermon!

  3. Publicity-Hound Says:


    A quick note about writing press releases…

    Don’t get discouraged if the media don’t pick them up. Now that we can distribute press releases online, we don’t have to write them only for journalists.

    Smart companies are writing lots of releases that include information about their products and services and posting them online, where they can be found by the Google and Yahoo news feeds—and by consumers searching for that type of information.

    I’m a former newspaper editor and I offer a free email tutorial on how to write and distribute press releases. Anyone can sign up for it at my website at

    Good luck writing releases.

    Joan Stewart
    The Publicity Hound

    P.S. I agree with you about Bill Stoller. His stuff is great.

  4. Terry Whalin Says:

    Hello Joan,

    Thank you for the great comment about your free email tutorial on how to write and distribute press releases. It looks terrific. I added some HTML code to make the link “clickable.”


  5. JR's Thumbprints Says:

    Interesting post. I hope to learn more about press releases as I continue to publish more short stories.

  6. Valerie Nelson Says:


    Congratulations on the new beginning. I hope your agency is very prosperous.

  7. CeliaSue Hecht Says:

    Hello, I thought I’d add a few valuable resources to the bunch…. I just posted a press release at PRWeb and PRLeap…

    While on PRWeb, I noticed a download for a free ebook about the New Rules of PR…

    An associate told me aboutincorporating key words and suggested that I take a look at (Marc Harty) has excellent info about search engine optimization and keywords.

    Generally, I teach people how to write press releases that get published and it used to be for magazines and newspapers… now included are newsletters, ezines, blogs, websites and more…

    What an expanding new world of publishing we live in…

    Good luck with your new Literary Agency adventure!

    CeliaSue Hecht

    PS: FYI, the press release I wrote was about Free Live Interviews with best-selling authors such as Dr. Christiane Northrup… at

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