Literary Agents #2: Why You Should Pitch an Agent (Tips on Writing Tuesday #7)

Last week I shared my experiences meeting agents over the past few months and the amazing conclusion that (gasp) they are people!

No, really, they are.

Today I want to talk about the other half of my experience: pitching an agent.

Literary agents want to find writers to represent.  They want to find that story that blows them away and gets them excited.  How do they find those stories?  One of two ways.

Either you query an agent through email/snail-mail following specified guidelines on their website or you “pitch” an agent at a writer’s conference.  A “pitch” is basically querying an agent, except it’s in person.

Today, we’re going to focus on the pitch.
As I mentioned before, I have had the chance to meet multiple agents in the last few months.  At both of the conferences I attended I took advantage of the opportunity to pitch my current novel – MAIDEN – to two different agents.
Was I scared?  You bet!
Did I survive?  Yes!
Did I learn a TON?  I learned a whole lot of TON! That’s why I want to pass it on.
Three reasons why you should pitch an agent:
1) Learn How to Present Yourself and Your Product 

The publishing world is a business, it’s that simple.  All writers got into writing because they love to write (mostly)…a good portion of writers are scared to death of the business side of things.  Either they don’t know or don’t care about marketing.  But, you need to care about marketing, at least enough to know how to present you and your story.

The more experience you get going to conferences, interacting with professionals, and pitching agents, you have no other option BUT to gain more experience.  When you pitch agents (or anybody really) you find out very quickly how you are doing in prepping your product for the marketing world.

2) Learn How to Improve Your Story

As I mentioned last week, finding an agent is like speed dating – I’m still seeking an agent myself – and the more agents you interact with

3) Learn What Type of Agent is Right For You

Find out the type of agent that is right for you – As a writer, I still personally do not have an agent (sigh), but…I definetely have a better understanding of the type of agent I want to work with.  “What?” you say!  “I’ll take any agent…it’s been my lifelong dream!”

Come back for the last post, part 3…Literary Agents: How to Pitch an Agent

Have you ever pitched a literary agent?  What was your experience?

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