Welcome to the Thrillerfest V Blog!

We hope you'll bookmark us, just as you bookmark so many of the hundreds of the International Thriller Writers that participate in our annual conference, held in New York City in July.

ITW is a youthful organization, always ready for a new way of looking at things. You'll find that dynamism here, in blog posts from authors, agents, editors and Thrillerfest attendees, past and present.

And that same excitement you feel from your favorite reads is evident in everything ITW does, and no wonder--the organization, staffing and publicity for ThrillerFest--including this new blog--is undertaken by volunteers, most of whom are ITW authors themselves.

So pull up a chair and stay awhile ... discover the latest news on what Thrillerfest V--the fifth anniversary of the conference--has to offer. Visit old friends, make new ones, ask questions, and hear about the remarkable things in store for the conference.

Whether or not you can come see us in New York--and we hope that you can!--please join us here. It's gonna be ... a thriller!

Kelli Stanley, Thrillerfest Publicity Committee Chair

Thrillerfest Publicity Committee:
Jeannie Holmes
CJ Lyons
Carla Buckley
Grant McKenzie

Friday, June 19, 2009

Pitching the flu

Last week, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the 2009 swine flu outbreak is officially a pandemic. According to WHO’s director-general, “The virus is now unstoppable.”

As a writer of medical thrillers, I’m slightly deranged and my reaction was, great news! The book I will pitch at AgentFest features a weaponized influenza virus. The first real-life flu pandemic since 1968 creates billions of interested readers, right? What could be a better sales pitch than that?

Then I read this marvelous article on pitching in person by Shirley Kennett, the 2009 ThrillerFest chair: http://www.thrillerwriters.org/thrillerfest/Pitching%20in%20Person.pdf Unfortunately, nowhere in the article does she say, “Simply mention a recent headline and agent will be convinced that anyone who follows the news will want to buy your book. Your job is done!”

I have some work to do before July.

To make the most of the opportunities ThrillerFest will give me, an unpublished author, I need a pitch that is as unstoppable as swine flu. A successful pitch “goes viral.” People who hear it remember it and are compelled to repeat it.

Using Kennett’s article and the CraftFest sessions on Wednesday, I hope to write and memorize such a pitch. And not only that crucial one-line hook. Once I’ve grabbed an agent’s attention and he or she asks me for more, I need a compelling book-flap type of summary to flow smoothly off my tongue. The main advantage of a face-to-face pitch is the chance to present myself as a professional. That’s why I’ll be practicing in front of a mirror for the next several weeks.

See you at ThrillerFest, dear readers, where I hope to infect you with my contagious pitch. By the way, enjoy the crowds of New York now; the flu is on vacation in Australia.

Dr. Amy Rogers, author of The Han Agent

No comments:

Post a Comment