22 - 23, 2013
- Allentown, PA
Meeting an agent or editor?
Ten tips to prepare for your agent or editor
- Greet your agent/editor with a smile and a handshake, sit, and
dive right into a verbal synopsis of the project you are pitching.
Briefly introduce the basic gist of your story, including your
main characters and their conflicts. This can be written, but you
only have ten minutes with this person— do you want to use the
time watching them read something, or selling yourself as well as
- Define your target readership, and explain any special marketing
ideas (especially important for nonfiction, but always
- Do you know what an agent or editor will do for you? If not,
- Tell them about your publishing credits and any other
credentials that qualify you to write about your subject.
- Be positive and personable. Sell yourself, make it easy for an
agent or editor to take a chance on you.
- Be prepared to answer questions about your project. Think about
why you are writing about the subject, your inspiration, and why
someone might want to read about it.
- Bring a one-page synopsis (fiction) or a chapter outline
(nonfiction), if you like. You can also bring your entire fiction
manuscript or nonfiction book proposal with you, but this is not
necessary, and do not offer it unless asked. More typically they
will ask for "it" to be mailed, so make sure you know
what "it" is—First three chapters plus synopsis? Whole
manuscript? Be sure to get a business card from the agent/editor.
- Do not pitch multiple projects in one session, but be prepared
to share ideas about further projects if asked.
- If you get the sense that this is not the right person to
represent you (you are writing about cats and they hate cats),
turn the meeting to your advantage by using this person as a
resource. Ask for a referral to a better targeted agent/editor, or
if they have any suggestions for improving your pitch or your
chances for publication.
- Relax, smile, and think of your meeting as a great vehicle for
learning. In this way, you are sure to come away with a positive
A Write Stuff Conference bonus: Come to the
Thursday night Writer's Cafe from 7:00–9:00 pm and practice your
pitch! If you'd like feedback, your fellow writers will give it to you.