The Sweetie Chronicles

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart. ~William Wordsworth

Writing A Pitch

There are all types of skills you have to learn in order to pursue being published. As if writing, say, A NOVEL, isn't difficult enough, you also must learn how to write both a brief (4 page'ish) synopsis and a longer synopses (10-15 pages). It sounds easy enough, right? What's 4 pages, really, compared to an entire novel? Yeah, you try slimming down your baby with all its plot twists and intricately carved out characterizations. It aint easy. And you know what's even worse? Writing a pitch/query letter.

Now that my novel is nearly complete and ready to start submitting to agents, the query letter and synopsis are the next big hurdles for me. Sure, I've been working on these things all throughout the novel writing process, but it's only now that I have a clear view of the novel and truly can see what it's become that I can sit down and get to work on my pitch. Ah, the pitch. I curse you!

Don't get me wrong, I'm excited to have the opportunity to pitch and query agents. I'm thrilled to have a novel I believe in that is so close to being ready to send out. On the other hand, I hate writing a pitch. Condensing the entire novel down to just a few sentences is one of the toughest things in the world. And even if you can get that done, you have to ask yourself: Is this interesting? Am I getting my hook across? Does the voice and tone of the novel come through? Would anyone in their right mind want to read this novel based on these five sentences?

Seriously. It can drive a writer crazy.

Over the next two weeks, I am going to be working on my pitch. First, I will pitch in person at the RWA National Conference in Orlando. Then, I will start sending out query letters to agents soon after. This pitch has to be dynamite. It's so incredibly important to get it right and to entice the agent/reader to keep reading. How do you do that? Well, what I think might be most important is to keep it simple. Too much plot information soon becomes a jumbled mess in a query letter. I am going to try to focus on the inciting incident - that thing that makes the story take wings. Then I'll briefly mention the central conflict of the book and make sure that my hook is clear. Five or six finely crafted sentences. It won't be easy, but I know I can do it.

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Sarra Cannon

Young Adult Indie Author

I always secretly wanted to be a cheerleader. And a witch. Now, I write about both. The first five novels in my Peachville High Demons Young Adult Paranormal series are available now in ebook!

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Beautiful DemonsThe Time Traveler's WifeLoveroot: PoemsFear of FlyingWe the LivingAnthem

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