Friday, Jan 20, 2012

How to Pitch Your Novel

If you’ve written a novel, you know the time and effort it takes to produce a full-length work of fiction. But once you’ve completed your novel, your work is not over. You will need to pitch your novel to an agent or editor.  

So how do you do that? 

The first step is to create a very short synopsis of your story. This short synopsis is sometimes called an “elevator pitch” because it is short enough to be spoken between two floors in an elevator. Now you know how short of a distance that is! 🙂 

The purpose of your pitch is to give two important pieces of information that the agent or editor is looking for:  

                             1) What is your novel about?
                             2) Have you finished writing your novel? 

So, as you write your pitch, focus on these two points. 

Author and ex-literary agent, Nathan Bransford suggests using a complex sentence to craft your pitch.  Here is the sentence.  You simply fill in the blanks. 


Here is my pitch for my recently completed novel, The Madonna of Pisano

When a young woman is raped by her parish priest and becomes pregnant, she faces losing the man she loves and violating the village code of honor in order to save her family from financial ruin. 

Now try your hand at summarizing your story by using the complex sentence above. Then share with us what you’ve written. 

For additional information on how to write a pitch, you may wish to check out the articles below:

“Agent Symposium Series – Pitching Editors”

“Beyond the First Draft – The Pitch Sheet and One-Sheet” by Kaye Dacus

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