How To Get Published

Writing a pitch to describe a book is similar to creating an online dating profile, said Richard Nash, founder of Cursor, at the eBook Summit today.

In a panel called, “How to Get Published: Interactive Pitch Slam,” Nash said that the challenge is that you have to convince a reader to take the time to read a book. “The power and challenge of a book is that it typically takes ten to fifteen hours to consume, which is five times longer than a movie,” he said. “There is a real burden on the consumer to figure out if you want to spend ten to fifteen hours of your life with that authors voice in your head.”

Jason Ashlock, principal at Movable Type Literary Group, recommends that authors get to know their genre before crafting their pitch. “Authors should read in their category and genre to understand where their book fits in,” he said. “You should become a voracious reader, particularly in the category of which you are hoping to enter. Our jobs are made easier if you can clearly articulate to us where your book fits into a person’s library.”

Kate McKean, literary agent at the Howard Morhaim Literary Agency recommends that writers stay on topic. She said that writers shouldn’t come to the table saying how they are not going to be the next best thing and making comparisons, but rather should say what their book is about. “The number one thing I see not happening in pitches is not telling me about your book,” she said. She also reminds writers who are pitching, to “remember that you are talking to a person,” she said. “You should also be a person when you do that.”

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