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Conferences

Books Sold!

"Draws the reader in like metal shavings to a magnet." That's what New York Journal of Books said about this novel - it was picked up by Atra/Simon & Schuster!

Rashad Harrison, Perfect Pitch Ficton Conference

PITCH: "Our Man in the Dark"

RESULT: Published November 15, 2011

 

"The Non-Fiction Pitch Conference was an invaluable experience. It provided me with the tools and support I needed to get published. I can’t thank the folks who put it together enough."

John Monahan, Non-Ficton Pitch Conference

PITCH: "They Called Me Mad: Genius, Madness, and the Scientists Who Pushed the Outer Limits of Knowledge"

RESULT: Published by Berkley Books in December 2010.

 

"My novel, "Act of Grace", will be published Feb 2011 by independent publisher Plenary Publishing. It is thanks in part to your excellent advice both in the individual consultation you provided (some of the best money I ever spent) and from doing the pitch sessions in New York that I was able to achieve this opportunity".

Karen Simpson, Fiction Pitch Conference

 

"Working with the fabulous super-star editor and author Sally Koslow has been a dream come true! I would have NEVER landed a book deal without the workshop in general and Sally in particular. Sally lent me her expertise, talent and insider knowledge of the publishing world in my relentless pursuit of realizing my potential as a published author. Sally has been with me every step of the way, keeping up with me over the years and made landing a book deal become a reality! I am eternally grateful to her!"

Lisa Baron

PITCH: My Burning Bush: How One Woman’s Career in Christian Politics Went Up in Flames

RESULT: Published in 2011.

 

"I had a good idea for a book on juvenile justice and a ready-made platform, but my proposal lacked focus and clarity. Richard Goodman’s keen analysis and the suggestions of the fine students in the class sharpened my thoughts. I sold the proposal to Kaplan Publishing Company for a nice advance.

Judge Irene Sullivan

PITCH: Raised by the Courts: One Judge’s Insight into Juvenile Justice

RESULT: Published by Kaplan Publishing in November 2010.

Attendee Buzz!

"The best conference I’ve ever attended."

 

"The opportunity to pitch our work to editors of major publishing houses was a once in a lifetime experience. Just terrific!"

 

"The conference was well worth the time and money. It was a fabulous experience."

 

"The conference met and surpassed expectations."

 

"I received great advice regarding my pitch. It was condensed but said much more."

 

"I needed to be able to locate the “gold nugget” in my manuscript and you helped me find that."

 

"Loved the format. Very comfortable from the start."

 

"I will forever be glad I came to this."

Adults, Children’s and Young Adult

Agents at Pitch 

 

Twice a year New York Writers Workshop offers three-day Pitch Conferences for writers of fiction. Participants refine pitches for their proposals or manuscripts, then meet with and pitch to three different editors from major New York publishing houses (Bantam Dell, Berkley Publishing Group, Dutton, Random House, Rodale, St. Martin’s Press, and others).

Allison at Pitch

 

Conference Info

DATE:

April 11-13, 2014

 

PLACE:
Ripley-Grier Studios (NY Spaces)
520 Eighth Ave (36th/37th), 16th Fl

 

 

COST:
$425 for 3-day Fiction Pitch Conference,
including Agents Panel

 

 

 

FICTION PITCH CONFERENCE

 

Schedule

Day 1 – Friday

9:30 am – 4:00 pm   Participants workshop their pitches with a workshop leader from New York Writers Workshop. After people sign in, there are short introductory remarks, and you’re assigned to a group (usually between 10 and 15 people) and a group leader. From 10:00 till around 4:00, with a break for lunch, you and the other members of your group work on your pitches.  Each participant reads his/her draft. The NYWW instructor provides guidance in revision for clarity, concision, and impact. In true workshop fashion, you’ll be able to learn from the leader’s and other participants’ feedback on your pitch as well as everyone else’s.

Day 2 – Saturday

10:00 am – 12:00 pm   Literary Agents Panel: Literary agents discuss the current market for fiction: commercial, genre and literary.  Is it possible, in this economic climate, to sell fiction? What are the current trends? How to query an agent? What do agents look for? What are the publishers looking for? How to market oneself? Q&A session follows the panel discussion.

 

1:30 pm – 5:00 pm  Participants make two pitches to editors. The first pitch is “public,” meaning participants pitch to an editor in the presence of their group. A short Q&A session with the editor follows. The second pitch is private, one-on-one with an editor, with an NYWW instructor present. You’ll have some free time while others are doing their one-on-one pitches. (Ripley-Grier is a fun place to hang out, as many theater groups and dance companies rehearse there.)

Day 3 – Sunday

10:00 am – 12:30 pm  Each participant makes one private pitch to an editor, again with an NYWW instructor present. The day wraps with a group conference with an NYWW instructor.

 

Your Homework Assignment

Before arriving at the conference, your “homework assignment” is to prepare a draft of your pitch. The pitch is a tool to persuade editors–or possibly, future agents–that yours is a book they should publish or represent. It should begin with a working title and include a succinct summary of your plot, setting, characters–whatever best captures what is unique about your book. Include information about your background if it’s relevant for your story, as well as any other ways you will be able to attract readers. Be aware of comparable books (not necessarily bestsellers), since editors might ask you about this. If you want ideas for preparing your pitch, it sometimes helps to look at the “flap copy” (what’s on the back cover or the inside of the paper covering a hardcover book) of other relevant books.

 

Your pitch will be made orally, so practice saying it out loud. You’ll be able to have notes or your computer with you when you meet the editors, so don’t worry about memorizing. Aim for two minutes, tops. There’s no need to send us your pitch in advance—just have it with you when you arrive. You won’t need copies of your manuscript or proposal at the conference.

 

For those participating in the children’s and YA session, be sure to include the genre of your book (picture book*, middle grade novel, YA novel, etc.), the target age-range of your audience, and know the word count. Try to keep your pitch under 250 words.
 
      *For a picture book, you should only plan to present illustrations if they are quality samples done by a professional artist or illustrator.

When You Arrive

We’ll be meeting at Ripley-Grier Studios, on the 16th floor of 520 Eighth Avenue, between 36th and 37thStreets.

 

Dress is casual—whatever you’re comfortable wearing.

 

Many people bring their laptops and use them to revise their pitches during the conference. There’s free wi-fi at Ripley-Grier, and there’s a Staples nearby (and sometimes a working printer at Ripley-Grier) if you want to print out your revisions.

 

There’s a snack bar right on the 16th floor at Ripley-Grier and also one in the building lobby where you can purchase snacks, sandwiches, and drinks. There is nothing scheduled after 4:00 on Friday, but many people use some of the time to revise their pitches for Saturday’s presentations.

 

 Workshop Leaders

Workshop leaders, editors, and members of the Agents Panel will be announced closer to the date of the conference.

 

How to Apply

If you’d like to attend a conference, send an email following these five steps:

    1. Subject: Fiction Conference
    2. A brief description of the project (up to 100 words)
    3. What you do for a living
    4. Contact information (mail address, phone)
    5. Send the email to Charles Salzberg charles@ducts.org

We’ll get back to you within ten days to let you know if your application has been accepted and, if so, where you should send your check.

 

Note: Please do NOT contact the JCC–while they handle registration for our writing classes, they are not involved with the conferences.