Promoting Books

This is a work in progress! Updating resources is ongoing.  Suggestions greatly appreciated!

1.  Book Trailers

Book trailers are similar to movie trailers, and we all know how those movie trailers hook us into buying tickets.  Why not use the book trailers that are on the Internet to help hook your students into reading?

2017 – 2018 SCYABA Nominees


This playlist contains 10 book trailers.


2.  Personalized Catalog Card

Visit Catalog Card Generator to create unique, personalized catalog cards to use in displays.

City of Bones catalog card

3. Guess the Wordle

Use Wordle to create puzzles for students to solve and have a “Guess the Wordle” contest. Just enter key words or phrases (words in phrases will be separated so either hyphenate them or write as one word) to create your Wordle.  These would be great as a slideshow or printed out for display.

Wordle: City of Bones

Have you guessed the title?

4.  Websites:  Author, Book, Character

Many YA authors have a web presence;  students (and teachers) can friend them on Facebook or follow them on Twitter to stay up-to-date on appearances and new books.  Some books and characters have been so popular that they have their own websites.   Bookmark these sites on the media center’s computers to encourage students to visit.

Reasons Educators Should Visit These Sites

  • You will often find contest information on author sites to share with students.
  • You can find offers of free promotional materials:  posters, bookmarks, postcards, etc.
  • Some sites have Readers’ Guides for books to be used in your bookclub.
  • You can find wallpaper to put on your computer to boost student interest.
  • Some sites provide information on how to follow the author on Twitter or friend them on Facebook or MySpace.  Being knowledgeable about the authors demonstrates your interest in not only the authors, but also your students.




A special thanks to media specialist Buffy Hamilton for her suggestion of including websites.

5.  Booktalks

Well planned and enthusiastically performed booktalks grab a student’s attention and introduce him to books he may never encounter otherwise. You can find a wealth of great booktalks to use or to tweak and make your own at Nancy Keane’s Booktalks Quick and Simple.

Digital Booktalks


  • Nancy Keane’s site offers podcasts of the written talks. You can also subscribe to the RSS feed of the podcast through iTunes.


  • Scholastic Book Services offers video booktalks performed by staff members.
  • Although the service is called Digital Booktalks, these videos provide more than video of a person booktalking.

6.  Create Posters

I created this poster using WigFlip.  Choose the Automotivator option, upload a picture from your computer, add a title and description and viola!  You have a poster.
screen capture of wigflip poster

And, just for fun, I am reposting a poster I had previously created at the same site.

automotivator picture by you.


These can be purchased from various sources (American Library Association, Highsmith, and Demco, to name just a few) but why not create your own?  Students loved the Twilight series and don’t know what to read next?  Why not have a bookmark with suggestions?  Students interested in mysteries, sports stories, fantasies, or romance may be too shy to ask for suggestions so have bookmarks on display to offer them suggestions.

Bone Up on Books Bulletin Board

I created this “Bone Up On Books” display during my internship at BSHS 9th Grade Campus.  As part of the board, I had dog food bowls labeled with different genres and filled them with bookmarks suggesting books in the library for each.  (Our mascot is the bulldog.)

Don’t stop there!  Sponsor contests encouraging students to create bookmarks.  Display the submissions – students love to see what their friends have created (and are reading!).

8.  Trading Cards

My friend Heather Loy, media speciaist at Wagener Sally High School, suggested using trading cards to promote books.  I used Big Huge Labs to create one on the first book in a popular new series, The Immortals (great to suggest to your Twilight fans, by the way).

Evermore Trading Card

9.  Reinventing Readers’ Advisory

Do you know the perfect book for those students who enjoyed The Graveyard Book but can’t find the time to personally recommend it to each of them?  Reach out to your readers even when they are not in the media center (or classroom) by creating book suggestion flyers.  Post them throughout the school to capture students’ attention.  You might also want to post them on the media center door or entryway to prompt students to come into the media center to check them out.

Twilight series recommendation poster

10.  Ramp Up Reading with Technology

This site is the companion site to my Ramp Up Reading with Technology session at the 2011 Upstate Technology Conference.  Included are suggestions on using QR Codes, Livescribe pens, digital picture frames, and mobile apps to promote reading.

10 Responses to “Promoting Books”

  1. Cathy Nelson Says:

    Love it! Stole it too!

  2. Heather Loy Says:

    Create trading cards for authors and/or characters from your favorite books. Here is one free site to use in creating trading cards.

    • Fran Bullington Says:

      Thanks, Heather! I actually found a book trading card yesterday when I was trying to corral all of my SCASL and EdTech conference stuff.

      Lots of ways you can use this!

  3. Lee Ann Perry Says:

    Hey! Sorry it took me so long to respond about your work, but I really wanted to take time to look at it thoroughly. I am amazed! I’m going to steal it all, of course! I see several ideas that I want to work into my Independent Reading requirement…and I have tons more to look through. I’m definitely going to use a lot of the resources to recommend books to my students this year as I try to start a new reading program in my classes. You are incredible–as always! I would love to make a suggestion, but I know far less than you do, so I have nothing to add! I will keep sending you interesting info when I come across something new! Keep up the good work!

  4. Ellen Says:

    Great ideas!

  5. Myths about asylum seekers and refugees « Reading Power Says:

    […] bragalog 12. Ways to promote books by Fran Bullington 13. Reading promotion scavenger hunt […]

  6. Aurobind Behera Says:

    very nice to see your blog. Its really interesting to all those facts of promoting books.

    Aurobind Behera
    Central School Srikakulam
    Andhra Pradesh (INDIA)

  7. Module 1: Library Blogs | SLM 508 Learning Log –pdb Says:

    […] of Posts:  There are links to book trailers.  In another post I found a fun idea to promote reading entitled,  “I can name that book […]

  8. Amrita Says:

    great ideas…i will going to follow the same….please keep posting….

  9. Donita K. Paul Says:

    Fran, I noticed your mention of Appreciate a Dragon Day in today’s blog. For more information and ideas, please look at:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: