Friday, March 11, 2011

Elevator Pitches that Probably Won't Sell Your Manuscript

Since conference season is fast approaching, here is a little advice for you. When an editor or agent asks you what your book is about these are probably NOT the answers you should give....

1. "Um... uh... well... my book is about... uh...."

2. "It's about an editor who is murdered after he rejects an author's manuscript about an editor who is murdered after he rejects an author's manuscript."

3. "You know, I'm glad you asked because God told me you were just the person to bring this book out."

4. Staring dumbstruck, mouth hanging open. "Well, uh, I figured if you liked the writing on the first page, I'd continue the story from there."

5.  "You know, for you to fully appreciate the brilliance of my manuscript we really need more than the thirty seconds it's going to take for us to get up to my floor. Do you have a couple hours free later today?"

6. "Before I tell you what my story is about, what is the largest advance you've ever given to a first-time author? And I hear that 8% is the going rate for royalties, these days. I'm just not going to be willing to settle for that. Can you offer me something better?"

7. "My story is 'Gone with the Wind' meets 'Star Wars' and I already have the actors picked out. I just know they'll want to star in the movie because the book is going to be SUCH a HUGE success!!! You are going to be so thankful that you published my story, one of these days!"

Alright, those are all the hideous pitches I've got. Care to share one of your own?
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