DATE:Check Back for Fall 2013 Dates
Ripley-Grier Studios (NY Spaces),
520 Eighth Ave (36th/37th), 16th Fl
Cost $425 for 3 day Non Fiction Pitch Conference,
including Agents Panel
Day 1 – Friday
9:30 am – 4:00 pm Participants workshop their pitches with a workshop leader from New York Writers Workshop. Each participant reads his/her synopsis. The NYWW instructor provides guidance in revision for clarity, concision, and impact. The instructor also discusses, as appropriate, the realities of the publishing market. The rest of the group participates, as appropriate, and learns from each example.
Special Lunch-time Presentation at March 1-3, 2013 Conference: “How to Write an Irresistible Non-fiction Book Proposal” by Rita Rosenkranz. What are the key components that define a winning book proposal? What research should an author do to help make sure the project has merit? How can an author leapfrog over the competition in the category? In this especially competitive publishing climate, authors need to be savvy to manage their visibility in the marketplace. This presentation will guide the author through the basic steps for writing a proposal and making the project count.
A former editor with major New York houses, Rita Rosenkranz founded Rita Rosenkranz Literary Agency in 1990. Her wide-ranging adult non-fiction listincludes health, history, parenting, music, how-to, popular science,business, biography, popular reference, cooking, spirituality, memoir, sports and general interest titles. Rita works with major publishing houses, as well as regional publishers that handle niche markets. She looks for projects that present familiar subjects freshly or lesser-known subjects presented commercially, and is open to new authors with credible marketing platforms. Forthcoming books include Replacement Child: A Memoir by Judy Mandel; A Mind for Numbers: How to Excel at Math (Even if You Flunked Algebra) by Barbara Oakley; A Century at Wrigley Field by Sam Pathy, and Breakthrough Communication by Harrison Monarth.
Day 2 – Saturday
10:00 am – 12:00 pm Literary Agents Panel: Literary agents discuss the current market for non-fiction books. What is required in this economic climate, to sell memoirs, how-to books and other types of non-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.
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
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.
On Friday: After people sign in, there will be short introductory remarks, and you’ll be 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 will work on your pitches. 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.
On Saturday: The Agents Panel will meet from 10:00 until 12:00. Saturday’s session of the conference itself will start at 1:15 and last until around 5:00. There will be two parts. First, everyone in your group will pitch to an editor in front of everyone else so, again, you’ll have the opportunity to learn from others’ experiences as well as your own. Then there will be private, one-on-one pitches with a different editor (not totally private—your group leader will probably attend). 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.)
On Sunday: Sunday’s session starts at 10:00 and runs no later than 12:30. The format is similar to the second part of Saturday afternoon, where everyone makes a one-on-one pitch to a third editor. There will be a wrap-up with your group leader at the end of the session.
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:
- Subject: Non-Fiction Conference
- A brief description of the project (up to 100 words)
- What you do for a living
- Contact information (mail address, phone)
- Send the email to Charles Salzberg firstname.lastname@example.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.
The following books were sold
as a result of the conference!
“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, whose book, They Called Me Mad: Genius, Madness, and the Scientists Who Pushed the Outer Limits of Knowledge, was presented at the New York Writers Workshop Non-Fiction Pitch Conference and, as a result, was published by Berkley Books in December 2010.
“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.”
Lisa Baron, whose book, “Life of the Party: A Political Press Tart Bares All”, was bought and published by Citadel 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, whose book, “Raised by the Courts: One Judge’s Insight into Juvenile Justice”, was published by Kaplan Publishing in November 2010.
What people are saying …
Non-Fiction Pitch Conference Attendees
“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.”
“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.”