Pitching Your Book to an Agent at a Writer’s Conference

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writer's conference

How to pitch your book at 90mph: advice for authors meeting face-to-face with agents at a writer’s conference.

Imagine you’re at the Frankfurt Book Fair. Behind the tall red wall outside the conference center sit dozens of agents waiting to meet with authors. This is a gateway to the gatekeepers.

Now imagine you’re sitting across from an agent at a writer’s conference. You have three minutes to convince them your book is great, that your writing will have an audience, and that you’re an interesting, sane, and professional person. You have three minutes to tell them why they should work with you.

Ok, I’m setting my stopwatch. Ready? Go!

Ummm… ummm… so…

Time’s up! How did you do?

Getting face-time with agents at a conference can be a great way to pitch your book. You get to cut-through all those query letters sitting unread on their office desks and talk to a real person. The benefits are obvious, but so too, perhaps, are the stresses.

It’s like the publishing industry’s version of speed dating, and a lot is riding on the outcome. If that makes you nervous, you’re completely normal. Hopefully the following articles will help you calm those nerves and make the most out of your brief time talking with an agent in person.

Four articles that will help you prepare your writing conference pitch

1. The Perfect Pitch: Pitching to Agents at a Writing Conference

2. How to Pitch Your Novel: Crafting and Delivering the Perfect Writer’s Conference Pitch

3. How to Pitch Your Book at a Writing Conference

4. Pitchapalooza: Tips for Perfecting Your Book Pitch 

Have you ever pitched your book to an agent in-person? What was the experience like? How did it go? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Chris Robley
Chris Robley is an award-winning poet, songwriter, performer, and music producer who now lives in Portland, Maine after more than a decade in Portland, Oregon. His music has been praised by NPR, the LA Times, the Boston Globe, and others. Skyscraper Magazine said he is “one of the best short-story musicians to come along in quite some time.” Robley’s poetry has been published or is forthcoming in POETRY, Prairie Schooner, Poetry Northwest, Beloit Poetry Journal, RHINO, Magma Poetry, and more. He is the 2013 winner of Boulevard's Poetry Prize for Emerging Writers and the 2014 recipient of a Maine Literary Award in the category of "Short Works Poetry."

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