#Pitmad

It’s that time again and #pitmad is upon us. Actually it is nearly over. Were you favored with a thrilling notification? Are you freaking out? Don’t lose your mind and don’t count your chickens. This is just one step in many – but you knew that.

One, be sure the person who favorited your tweet is not only legitimate and but also someone you’d want to work with very closely. The agent-writer relationship is not to be taken lightly. I know people who took their first offer and lived to regret it. You’re hungry. That’s good. But if your 140 character pitch was enough to get the attention of one agent, then your actual submission to an agent you’ve research and feel good about will be too. Check their profile, google and read interviews they’ve given. If they sound like someone you’d never invite for a drink – maybe skip it. Or submit anyway and be able to say you’ve turned down an agent who just wasn’t right for you.

Two, ok, go on. Celebrate a little. However you choose to, but absolutely pat yourself on the back! Well done.

Three, check out what they want and read carefully. 15 pages? 50? 10,000 words?

Even with the intro of #pitmad at the door, you’re query letter still needs to be on point. Worry less about your synopsis, if they even want one yet. No one has ever written a good synopsis. Ever. Cover the basics, no surprises, and in all things be yourself.

If you’re still in a panic and/or unsure if what you’ve got is really going to finish the job and get you singed with the agent of your dreams there a few things you can do (give me a second). What you don’t want to do is read over your words and obsess and edit the life right out of it because you’re terrified.

What you can do is trade, share, find a beta reader, hire a editor, ask that favorite old professor, call up your old English teacher aunt Dotty, or find a reading group to help you. And I’m not just saying that because I’m one of those people. It works. I promise. What does not work is pretending you’re an island of perfection and the first writer in human history to do everything perfectly in isolation. Do us all a favor and find a collaborator so that amazing story you’re percolating can come out and greet the rest of us!

 

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