Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Jenny and I are doing the Writer's Digest Pitch Slam today, which is a one-day writer's conference right before BEA. I've done it three times before.

Why do I do it when I don't have the time to read the queries that come in on their own?

I think it's really important for new writers to meet and listen to agents, to hone their pitching skills, to ask us questions about the business and their books, and to de-mystify the world of agentinig.

I've been doing this for so long and I can't represent everybody out there, but I can take three minutes at a time to share what I've learned over the years.

I rarely take on something that's pitched to me this way, but often I'll get a letter saying someone met with me years ago and now they know they have something that's right for me. And every now and then, they're right.


Dana King said...

Three minutes?? I can't believe anyone learns anything of value in three minutes. A writer who is serious about getting a handle on the industry and its practices still need to go about it the old-fashioned way: internet searches and agent/editor blogs.

Anonymous said...

I think it's great that you do this. A few agents as well established as you are wouldn't bother. Good for you.

Aimlesswriter said...

Sad to hear you rarely accept books through a pitch but glad to hear you like to listen. I'm trying to get up my courage to face an agent and pitch. I'm afraid my mind will go blank and I'll sound like an idiot. I've never heard the term "social science fiction". Would this be something like The Stand?

Al from Question Of The Day said...

I'm glad to have met you, and I really appreciate that you gave your time. Thanks again.

- Al

Anonymous said...

I hope it went well for you! I was curious if there are any questions you wish someone would ask. I hope you will let us know some time.

WandererInGray said...

the home office,

*shrugs* you'd be surprised how long three minutes can last and how much good information you can get. My last two pitch sessions were extremely helpful. I got MS requests on both of them and even though I didn't get offers from those I got good experience in how to both present and how to follow-up on a pitch meeting, among other things.

I agree that it's not the *only* way to get information about the industry, but it can be helpful if you go about it right.

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