**First, a little announcement: My blogging buddy Kimberly is giving away a $100 Writers Digest Gift Certificate —good for entry fees, books, webinars and more…and, FYI, agent Mary Kole (with Andrea Brown Lit) is having another webinar on February 3. If you sign up, you’ll get a 1-2 page critique. Awesome! Click HERE to enter**
Okay, did you all hear about the incredible Pitch Slam put on by Writers Digest last weekend in NYC? As part of the conference, over 500 lucky people were there for an exciting two hours of pitch mania with 50 agents. I can’t even imagine the pushing/scrambling that must have taken place to get a solid spot in front of a dream agent, hit them with a three-minute pitch, then dash desperately to the next one, hoping the line wasn’t too long. How crazy would that be? Thanks to Twitter, it's possible to know a little bit of what went on during the weekend, even if we weren't lucky enough to attend (the hashtag is #wdc11 if you want to check out the Tweets).
Agent tweets right before the storm of writers attacked:
*Holy Crap. Here come the writers.
*And the stampede begins...
Agent tweet a few minutes into Pitch Slam:
*And the line at @janet_reid's table is officially 3 miles long.
Meredith Barnes, fantastic assistant to super-agent Janet “the Shark” Reid, was tweeting agent tips throughout the conference:
*Your pitch is comprised COMPLETELY of your main character (name, age) and what CHOICE they face. Drop backstory/"situation."
*If you're getting rejections, look at your novel and query. Don't exhaust all queriable agents before you rework things!
*YA wordcount (via Mary Kole): 45k words up to 95k words. 100k words is pushing it, esp for a debut.
*35k is ballpark for mg. But 30k is skirting the low end of the range, so keep that in mind!
*For #kidlit, always mention your protag's age in the query. MG readers are 9-12, 35k words. YA 14 plus. Remember kids read up!
*"Quiet" literary fiction can do BIG things! It's about how "dramatically and passionately" you write about your subject.
*Should I hire a ghosteditor? @Janet_Reid: BULLSHIT! You want to be a writer, you've got to write your own book.
*Once you're getting "microadjustments," like you'd get from a line editor, you're ready to sub!
*How do you know when your ms is ready? If ur getting comments that resonate as something you *need* to revise...keep revising.
Post-Pitch Agent Tweets:
*I've seen 32 writers in 1 hour. good news: requested a small handful of good stuff :D
*The intensity of Pitch Slam was quite the scene. Found a few gems, saw a few tweeps & met very excited writers! Good time all around.
I was sorry to miss the excitement, but felt like I was almost there thanks to Twitter. Cool information abounds. And by the way, just because you’re on Twitter and follow people does NOT mean you have to Tweet all the time (or at all), so don’t be intimidated!
FINAL NOTE: If you missed the WriteOnCon LiveChat with Pippin Properties, click HERE to read the transcript (pssst, it includes a little info on what they like to see in queries!).