Friday, July 15, 2011

Pitch-It Contest

It's a special day in our house today. As of 9:13 tonight, this guy

will be a year old.

Crazy. So it'll be a shorter blog post today.

I told you guys on Wednesday that we were going to shift our focus from the craft of writing to the business of writing. One of the things you'll have to have is an "elevator pitch." Something to say when you're asked, "What's your book about?"

Crafting a good elevator pitch is an art unto itself, and we'll spend some time next week talking about what makes a good one. Which is timely because the NextGen Writers conference page has been updated recently with the details on the Pitch-it contest, so you Go Teen Writer readers will have a leg up on everyone else.

Also the schedule of presenters has been released, which you can check out here. I'll be the one in my jammies talking about the wonders of secondary characters.

I'm putting together a list of "publishing business" topics to cover. What would you like to see on that list? What agents look for? Outstanding query letters?


  1. I can't wait to hear about elevator pitches!! I've always had trouble with them.

    I'd also like to hear about agents - how you get one, how hard it is to get one, what they look for, etc.

    Happy birthday cute little guy! (I hope you still don't mind being called "cute" - my youngest brother doesn't like it much. But he's 4, so.... ;D)

  2. I'll take any help I can get on query letters and synopses -- but mainly query letters. They're pretty much the bane of my existence.

    Happy birthday to your son!

  3. Lol, Ellyn. This morning he was crawling around wearing his sister's pink-beaded necklace. I don't think he'll mind being called cute :)

    Agents, query letters. Check. (They're the bane of my existence too, Jenna. I'll pass along what little I know!)

  4. Aww, happy birthday to your little guy! Will it be his first time with cake and ice cream?
    Both your kids have pretty brown eyes!

  5. They do, Tonya! Those are their dad's. If we had 10 kids, they'd probably all have those big brown eyes.

  6. He's so cute!! :D Happy birthday to him!

    And I'm looking forward to learning about elevator pitches... those could come in handy because I think I bore people with explaining what my book is about. I've never really given any thought to shortening my explanation, just for the very reason that there is SO many things that I wanna tell them about!

  7. Oh, yes. I need this pitching post. Believe me, the conversation is cut short when I say, "It's about this girl..." Well, I don't want to give away the story!:P


  8. Your baby is so cute!

    Happy Birthday Connor!

    - Elisabeth Greenwood:)

  9. Happy, happy birthday, Connor! Have you ever been told you look like the Gerber baby? :)

    I will be entering the Pitch-It contest ~ I've been working on mine!

    I'd like to know more about crafting book proposals. I've been reading books about that lately. Also, platform. What's up with the need for a platform? I read about it everywhere (and there's a section devoted to that in my proposal) but I'd love to read your thoughts on WHY its important.

    I can't wait to begin talking about the business side! Thanks, Stephanie, for this wonderful series!

  10. Oh, and how exactly one goes about building a platform, too. :)

  11. The query letter is, initially, the hardest part. So many new authors fail to realize the importance of it. I think sample query letters is a great way to show others how to do it.

    I think you should even let a few of your followers post their query letter for review, that way they can get feedback and others can see what works and what doesn't work. I'd be happy to help you with it if you'd like. :)

    Beautiful baby! Congrats!

  12. Rachelle - book proposals and - groan - platform. Check.

    That's a great suggestion, Rachel!