Wednesday, July 18, 2012


So my crit partner is gearing up for this year's RWA conference. The cost is not cheap. At over $400 for members and upwards of $600 for non-members, its definitely something that takes a few moments of debating whether or not it is the right time to go.  Do you have a finished book or one that is near completion to pitch? Are you ready to take a meeting with either an agent or an editor? Do you truly feel its worth not only the expense, but also the days weeks of stress that comes with what could be a MAJOR step in a writing career?

However, as it is in Anaheim this year, the conference seemed totally doable because we wouldn't have to pay airfare, hotel, or car rental. Being that both of us reside a reasonable distance from the venue, we talked about going together. Ultimately, I decided not to attend. partner is going and I am so excited for her!

This brings us the flurry of emails flitting back and forth between her and I. She is trying to get her one-sheet for her book ready. Her photo is fabulous! She definitely looks like an historical romance author! Also she's working on her proposal. But the thing that seems to be stumping her the most...and I had the same her elevator speech.

We sat down for coffee last weekend and we did a little role play to flesh out what she might say during her appointments with the agent and editor. So we shook hands, introduced ourselves, and then she looked at me expectantly. Finally, after a few seconds, I asked her (in my best agent-y voice) "So tell me about you're going to say."

She blinked..."Well, ask me questions."

So I told her that when you sit down to have to talk.  Like right away. Its a sales meeting, essentially. Your book is your product.  Be professional, direct, clear, and passionate about your novel. My crit partner and I tried to work out a succinct, yet interesting pitch for her book. I gotta say...that is so hard to do!

Anyway, I think she's got it now and I hope she does exceedingly well a the conference and returns with great news.  My fingers are crossed, Erin!

Photo by Fran Ulloa


J.R. Williams said...

Practicing is definitely key because even if you’re nervous, you’ll be able to lay out the pitch perfectly. That is what I learned from working in sales. Good luck to her!

E.J. Wesley said...

Best of luck to you both, Raquel! Hope you knock 'em dead ... or maybe just impress the heck out of 'em. Probably more legal. :)

Erin Kane Spock said...

I'm getting there. Your help is invaluable. By which I mean so valuable that you can't put a value on it, not of no value, which you might interpret the word to mean...
Man I'm nervous.

Gail M Baugniet - Author said...

How lucky for you to have a critique partner close enough to meet for coffee! You are a good friend to sit and role play with her. Best of luck to her at the conference.

David P. King said...

That's awesome of you to help. It's not easy sometimes, but both parties learn from each other. :)