The 2013 Ozarks Romance Authors convention is a week from tomorrow. Know what that means? Time to get ready for my agent pitch!
Nothing to stress about, right? After all, I’ve pitched this book before. Well . . . sort of. Here’s what went down.
I walked into my first-ever pitch session with two pages of story notes clutched in my shaking hand. Notes for a story I’d only begun plotting in earnest two weeks before.
When I signed up, I assumed I would be pitching the contemporary romance I’d been working on for the past year. It still wasn’t finished, but the conference organizer assured me it was okay to practice pitch an unfinished novel just for the experience—as long as you’re upfront about it.
As the conference approached, I realized I would never finish this novel. It wasn’t the right project—or genre—for me. If it was going to be a practice pitch anyway, why not pitch the book I really wanted to write? Um, because I hadn’t even started it yet and only had a rough idea of the plot? Yeah, that little voice of reason inside your head can be annoying, can’t it? Ignore it. I did.
I hated feeling like I was wasting the agent’s time. Guilt and nervousness make a really unpleasant combination, by the way. But I ignored my roiling stomach and walked into the room. The agent stared back at me, disapproval radiating from her face as I explained this was a practice pitch for an unfinished novel, and that I’d been told that was okay.
“No. You don’t pitch a novel until it’s complete.”
I couldn’t think of a single thing to say.
Finally, the agent sighed and said, “You’ve got ten minutes. You might as well talk.”
So I did. I’m not sure what I said, but I guess I stumbled through a semi-coherent version of the story, because at the end she told me it was right up her alley and to send it when it was ready. I actually got a manuscript request (a partial, anyway) out of that debacle.
Now I’m getting ready to pitch that story again for ORAcon 2013. I’m still working on revisions, but at least the manuscript is mostly complete this time.
What about you, my writer friends? Have you pitched to an editor or an agent? Are you getting ready to?