Pitch Session Tips

It’s not often you get to sit down and discuss your writing with a professional.

At the Blue Pen Writers’ Conference, attendees can skip the slush pile and pitch their book to a literary agent. They can also book critique sessions to delve into their first ten pages or query letter.

We understand that these one-on-one sessions can feel intimidating. Please review the following guidelines and advice to prepare for your pitch or critique session.

Keep it short. #

Try to keep your pitch to 90 seconds to allow plenty of time for back and forth with the agent. A strong, concise pitch shows that you understand how to position your book.

Practice beforehand. #

You don’t need to memorize your pitch verbatim—in fact, it’s better if you don’t. But you should be comfortable with the points you plan to discuss.

Don’t give away the ending. #

Your pitch should be more like a query than a synopsis. You’re not trying to run through the entire plot. The idea is to make the agent want to know more.

Focus on the main conflict. #

Introduce your character. Explain what they want and what is standing in their way. Clarify the stakes (the worst-case scenario if they fail). End with the question of whether they will reach their goal.

Prepare questions to discuss. #

If you have any burning questions for the agent about writing or publishing, this is the time.

Try not to stress! #

Remember that agents are people who love books—just like you.

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