Sunday, June 27, 2010

Pitching In The Big Leagues

Thank you so much to the Bad Behavers for having me!

Few things are more intimidating for a beginning romance author than “pitching” a story idea in-person to an editor. Earlier this month I had the privilege of actually doing it, and I’d like to share a couple of thoughts.

1.) It’s NOT final exam time! You should know your story by heart and be able to describe the basic conflict, setting, and characters in a minute or less. But don’t worry – editors are not going to nitpick unless you’ve been totally incoherent. I was amazed when I finished my pitch in one minute, the editor said, “that sounds fun” and asked for a synopsis and a partial! This was one minute in, and I still had nine minutes to go. A very valuable lesson! Therefore . . .

2.) Be ready for a real conversation! It’s not likely the editor will spend ten minutes asking follow ups on your one minute summary. Therefore YOU should be ready to ask the editor intelligent, meaningful questions. “What are you looking for?” is the basic idea. No matter how good your story is today, you might be able to write a better one next year – try to find out what THIS editor likes, needs, is eager to see!

3.) Remember that YOU have written a great story!

Carol Storm is the author of HIALEAH HEAT, an erotic thriller set in Miami, and HUNTED WITNESS, a romantic suspense set in the Florida Keys. Both are available at Phaze books, Visit Carol at her blog, THE STORM REPORT, or on Facebook!


Lynne Roberts said...

Great advice. The thought of pitching to an editor or agent makes my knees knock together. But if I get the chance, I will be more prepared thanks to your post.

Dawne Prochilo said...

I agree- great advice- how many times have I rewritten parts of a story of the advice of one editor only to find out another one didn't like that idea.

Savanna Kougar said...

Carol, what a cool opportunity, and good advice. I doubt I'll ever be in that situation, given my personal circumstances. But, I can always pass your advice along.