Book Launch Checklist

book_launch_checklistAuthors and publishers must keep track of a great many details when launching a new book. Here is a checklist to help guide you through the process, from the book inception all the way through the first month of publication.

TIP: This checklist goes along with my recorded webinar: How to plan a book launch

TIP: You can download a printable, pdf version of this checklist here.


Book launch checklist

From the moment you first have your book idea, start the first section of tasks.

Build your author platform

  • Create an author website
  • Start a blog
  • Build your social media
  • Start an opt-in email list

Build connections

  • Join writing groups
  • Attend writing conferences
  • Join professional organizations


  • Competitive research in genre
  • Look for agents, editors
  • Identify contests / awards
  • Notice what other authors are doing.


Four months before launch:

  • Create a marketing plan. Include:
  • Target market
  • Media channels
  • Platform building
  • Special offers / promos
  • Events
  • Metrics and goals

Three months before launch:

  • Invite beta readers
  • Order a Kirkus review
  • Become active on Goodreads
  • Plan party / launch event
  • Blogger outreach
  • Submit to contests
  • Set up book signings
  • Set up blog tour
  • Set up a Google alert for your name and your book title

Two months before launch:

  • Cover design input
  • Ask for influencer endorsements
  • Brainstorm media possibilities
  • Polish BCC (back cover copy) and book pitch
  • Post a teaser on your website
  • Make sure you website has up to date info

One month before launch:

  • Write press release
  • Reach out to media contacts
  • Join Google+ groups
  • Join Facebook groups
  • Announcements
  • Post a teaser on Wattpad
  • Double post blogs on Goodreads
  • Guest post on other blogs
  • Create a media kit

One Week before launch:

  • Send reminder to Beta Readers
  • Social Karma – Comment and share
  • Upload media kit
  • Create draft of announcement email
  • Post beta reader reviews to website
  • Create Amazon Associate account

Day of launch (I recommend Tuesday):

  • Holy posting, Batman!
  • Update Website
  • Post on all social accounts
  • Post in all groups
  • Post on Pinterest
  • Post on K Boards
  • Message Beta Readers
  • Message friends and family with pre-written posts
  • Send announcement email to list
  • Update Author Central
  • Update Goodreads
  • Update Shelfari
  • Week of launch:
  • Book launch event
  • Reminder to Beta
  • Social postings

Month of launch

  • Post a steady flow of content and promos (3 to 1)
  • Blog tour
  • Interviews
  • Guest posts on blogs
  • Send a reminder email with event and launch info
  • ASK friends and family for reviews
  • Promos
  • Goodreads Giveaway
  • Bookbub
  • Free KDP days
  • Rafflecopter / Instafreebie

And keep on going!


  1. This checklist goes along with my recorded webinar: How to plan a book launch
  2. You can download a printable, pdf version of this checklist here.

How to Self Publish Your First BookReady to self-publish your first book? I'm leading a course called How to Self-Publish You First Book on Gutsy Creatives. Click here to register.

Best of luck on your publishing journey!

Leave a comment

A.J Sendall

10 years ago

Thanks Kelsye. A very comprehensive and useful list.
I think I need to reframe...


10 years ago

Glad you found it helpful! Good luck with your books!


10 years ago


Safirah Irani

10 years ago

Thank you for that but first i need a publisher . Can you advice on how to get my story heard?


10 years ago

That's a very complicated question to answer in a comment reply. I recommend reading Jane Friedman's post "Start here: How to get your book published."

Lessons Learned from a Book Launch » Wordhelper » Editing, Writing, Resumes, and More!

10 years ago

[…] For a nice pre- and post-launch checklist, go to […]

Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of August 11, 2014 - Author Marketing Experts, Inc.

10 years ago


9 years ago

This is so helpful - especially the timing. Thank you!

Redding Gloria Ann

6 years ago

Great informtion as I am preparing for my first book lauch on 7-14-18.


6 years ago

I love hearing this! Glad the list is helplful and timely for you Gloria. Send me a note when you launch your book. I'll happily share some tweets to promote your new book.

Self-Publishing Mistakes And How To Avoid Making Them

3 years ago

[…] You need to create some hype for your book and perhaps get some pre-orders to help your sales ranking for your book launch. […]