A quick piece of advice – learn how to pitch your book in one sentence. It is invaluable to get to the ‘core’ of your book when you are discussing your work with friends, writing groups and potential agents. Agents use them when pitching to editors, editors use them when pitching to sales teams, sales teams use them when pitching to booksellers, readers use them when pitching to friends.
A strong, catchy pitch works wonders. It needs to be a short description that makes people want to read your book. Something to hook readers in.
Here’s the pitch for the recent debut, THE AGE OF MIRACLES by Karen Thompson Walker, that was sold to Simon & Schuster UK for a 6 figure sum and Random House in the US for an astonishing 7 figures:
‘THE AGE OF MIRACLES is about an eleven-year-old girl and her family who wake one morning in their modest suburban home in California, to discover, along with the rest of the world, that the rotation of the earth has suddenly begun to slow – life is thrown into turmoil and panicked governments dictate that the traditional 24-hour cycle must be followed, regardless of the sun.’
You can shorten this even further to: ‘imagine if each day started getting longer and longer’
Here is the pitch we used for my author’s debut THE GUARDIAN ANGEL’S JOURNAL by Carolyn Jess-Cooke, now translated into 20 different languages:
‘When a woman dies at forty years old she is sent back to earth as a guardian angel to herself and is forced to re-experience and record her biggest mistakes and fiercest regrets from the beginning of her life to her untimely death – she is told she must not change any of her actions, but should simply learn from them’
You can shorten this to: ‘What would you change if you could live your life again?’