Yesterday was Houston YA/MG Writers Day. There was another event going on that kept many of our members from attending, but for the fifteen or so writers who showed up it was a good day.
Mary Lindsey led us in a discussion and workshop on sharpening our one-sentence pitch for our novels. She shared agent Rachel Gardner’s questionnaire to help authors focus on the main concept of their stories. We each worked our way through this questionnaire then worked on our one-line pitches with the other people at our table.
I was incredibly lucky to be sitting with Mary whose YA novel Shattered Souls will be released in 2012, Dotti Enderle, author of over thirty books, including her latest YA novel Crosswire, and author, sculptor and marketing guru, Bridgette Mongeon—it pays to get there early! None of these writers were working on their own pitches, so I got their full attention. We worked on my pitch for the manuscript I am currently querying, one I am revising at Darcy Pattison’s Novel Revision Retreat next month, and a pitch for my new WIP.
After our break, we went around the room and everyone read their newly revised pitches out loud. No wonder it’s so hard to get published! That room was overflowing with fantastic book concepts. I’m not kidding. Everyone had amazing pitches.
That’s going to make things tough for Ammi-Joan Paquette of the Erin Murphy Literary Agency when she judges the pitch contest on QueryTracker this month, October 27. This is a great opportunity because EMLA is not open to queries. Another pitch contest will be held in November on Shelli Johannes’s blog, Market My Words with agent Josh Adams of Adams Literary.
Thanks Mary, for another great meeting, and thanks Dotti and Bridgette for your help with my pitches! I enjoyed seeing everyone and I’m looking forward to our next meeting.