WHO SHOULD PITCH?
In our humble opinion – every writer!
Learning to pitch your work is the only way to access traditionally publishing, but even if your book isn’t ready to roll out the door, you should come to Ultimate Pitchfest to PRACTICE and CREATE RELATIONSHIPS.
It’s never too early to practice talking to the gatekeepers, or to get them excited about your work.
Whether your manuscript is ready to go or not, now is the time to start making relationships with the people who’ll take it out to the publishing marketplace.
Take our pitch class and get prepped that way, too. What better way to enter the market than to pitch agents who are looking for what you’ve written!
Sometimes even authors with a couple books on the shelves need a fresh take. Maybe you’ve written in a new genre, and want to launch a new pen name. Maybe your publishers can’t take your new book. Maybe you’re looking for a switch. Here’s a great opportunity to set the stage for the next phase of your career.
If you’ve self-published and worked hard to market your books, you’ve already built your business foundation and know what it takes to be an author. And agents and publishers know this. You can partner with traditional publishing as a way to bring new books or re-issues to market, even as you continue your current indie efforts.
FINDING AGENTS TO PITCH TO
Do your homework; research the agents ideal for your story.
Check out the authors and the genres they represent.
Read the agent bios. They often tell you exactly what they are looking for in a great read.
What else do you have in common with the agent? More than genre, are their favorite books you both love? Schools you both attended? Hobbies you share? Themes near and dear to both your hearts?
Those commonalities are excellent reasons to want to work with a specific agent, and those details can also help shape your pitch to them. Tell them exactly why they are the perfect agent to rep your book.
DEVELOPING YOUR PITCH
First you’ll need a logline to anchor your pitch. Then write a quickie version — the classic “elevator” pitch you can give in 30 seconds and still make an impact.
Now write out two or three longer versions of the story. Talk about the plot, the themes, the characters. Don’t be satisfied with one version. Approach telling your story in different ways to find what works best.
And remember – your entire pitch should be no longer than 5 minutes. You’ll want to leave plenty of time to answer the agent’s questions and take down their contact information so you can send the requested pages.
If you’re concerned about how to write the best possible pitch, take our Perfect the Pitch class. Chris Mandeville will help you hone it efficiently and effectively.
PRACTICING YOUR PITCH
Five minutes is a long time, but you don’t want to waste a second of it because you can’t think of what to say next. Practice, practice, practice! Out loud! To friends! Maybe even to strangers, if they give good notes.
Our online class will also teach you delivery techniques to help you be confident and professional and ready to sell on the day of your presentation.
PARTICIPATING AT ULTIMATE PITCHFEST
Arrive at the Ultimate PitchFest early. Get some coffee, have a Danish, chat with the other writers. Come to the Pitch Prep room for the opportunity to pitch to the other presenters and get some last minute feedback from our Pitch masters Chris Mandeville and Trai Cartwright.
Be sociable and have fun. Make contacts. Meet your future agent and sell that book!
Know the agents you want to speak to?
Inclement Weather Concerns: We all understand that weather in Colorado can be unpredictable at times. If it snows on 25 Feb. 2017, we ask that everyone use sound judgement when making their travel plans. Should you chose, for safety reasons, not to attend, we will do our best to re-schedule you with the agent(s) of your choice on another day. And in the case of a blizzard, we will cancel UPF 2017 and reschedule in the Spring.