I remember the very first time I pitched a novel at a bigger writing conference. It was five years ago at the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference in Minneapolis, MN. I sat across from Tamela Hancock Murray with my knees quaking.
First let me say, what a kind-hearted agent. Tamela made me feel more at ease in spite of my newbie status. She even gave me some tips to help me with future appointments. I did leave that appointment with a request for a proposal and a bit more confidence.
If I knew then, what I know now I could have prepared better for that amazing opportunity. Here are a few tips:
*Dress the part. You are more confident when you look your best. Be professional in your attire for these appointments.
*Know your audience. Take the time before your appointment to do some research on the person you’ve gotten to pitch to. If you find out a bit about them and what they are looking for, it will help you to cater your pitch more specifically and talk intelligently about things they care about.
*Bring A One Page. This is basically a one page document that tells the basics of your book. There are many samples out there on the web. Do some research to find them. I will do a blog on Crafting a One-Page this month.
*Bring A Business Card. Many times an agent or editor is unable to bring lots of papers home with them on the airplane. They may or may not choose to keep your one sheet, but they will likely take a business card.
*Bring a synopsis and sample chapter. Agents and editors don’t typically take these things with them, but they may want to skim through it before determining whether or not to request materials. Be prepared if that is something they want to see.
One place that you can get ready for pitching at conferences is the My Book Therapy Pitch And Scrimmage Workshop:
What are some places you have found great information to get ready to pitch your novel?
(Also, stop by to visit me at http://www.mybooktherapy.com/ where I have a featured flash blog on Brainstorming Peripheral Plot.)