Monday, July 23, 2012

Dead Air Pitch

Here’s the pitch I used for Dead Air at the 2012 PNWA Conference. I only pitched 1 agent and 2 editors because I used most of my time to pitch Girl | Alien. One of the editors requested a full manuscript. I’m probably going to send it out to more agents and editors at some point.

We had 3 minutes to pitch our stories, so that gave us about 60 seconds to give the pitch. (Note this is not a query letter and should not be read as such). Here it is:

Hi, I’m Andrew (or some such greeting). I’ve written a Contemporary Mystery called Dead Air. It’s complete at 75,000 words.

Archie is the sole caretaker of his mother who, after horrible accident that also killed Archie’s father, has been left bedridden and her brain is a little scrambled. But she’s a former lead homicide detective.

Archie comes across a dead body and the only witness is a blind teenager who claims the room was filled with “dead air”, although forensics doesn’t find a thing. He enlists the help of his mother in hopes that an investigation will bring her back to life.

During the investigation Archie’s car is sabotaged with “dead air” and goes out of control into the bay, Archie barely escapes with his life. When he returns to his mom, she suddenly remembers that the wreck that killed his father was very similar—and also may have involved “dead air”. They find that a string of murders going back ten years may be linked to this substance. They must find the killer before he strikes again.

I’m not super happy with it, and the agents/editors had some questions. Basically my issue is that there are really 2 stories—the mystery, and Archie’s relationship with his mother and how that evolves. I was able to explain it better when they started asking questions, that the story is really about a family trying to piece things together after tragedy strikes, and to try to find justice for Archie’s father’s death.

And now here’s the calling card for Dead Air: (phone # redacted when I dumped to JPG, not a typo).

dead air biz card


dead air biz card2

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Girl|Alien Pitch

Here’s the pitch I used for Girl|Alien at the 2012 PNWA Conference. Out of 12 agents and editors pitched, I got 5 direct requests and 3 requests to “send to this person in my office” which makes 8 out of 12. For the 4 “noes” it was usually that they didn’t represent YA SF or as one put it, “aliens” (even though the “Alien” in the title is a misnomer—Grett’s more of a highly evolved/genetically-engineered human). I don’t feel any rejections were from the pitch or story, it was mostly that it was hard to tell which YA agents sold YA SF so I pitched them all.

We had 3 minutes to pitch our stories, so that gave us about 60 seconds to give the pitch. (Note this is not a query letter and should not be read as such). Here it is:

Hi, I’m Andrew (or some relevant comment if she reads my tag). I’ve written a Young Adult Science Fiction novel called Girl Alien (did not say Girl-bar-Alien :). It’s complete at 95,000 words.

Grett just wants to be a normal, human teenager, to hang with her friends, and to play on the Slapball team at her new school. But there’s this voice in her head that tells her to do things like run into burning buildings and to not “kill” (yes, I did air quotes)—even though she’s part of a warrior clan.

She comes across a boy—the first of her kind she’s ever met—and when they kiss, her powers explode. She gets super strength, she can change her appearance (I wave my hand in front of my face), and her hair grows long and starts doing things on its own. (more waving). The problem is that her alien side has also come alive, and now wants her to enslave her friends and take over the city.

When the rest of the aliens finally arrive, Grett must make a choice: either take her rightful place at their side as eventually conquerors of the planet, or convince her alien side to help defend her human friends from the attack.

I got a variety of questions after that, many about what the world is like, what the society is like, who the main characters are, what age is this for, concerns about the word count, and then the dreaded “what book is this like” and the best I could come up with on the spot was Percy Jackson, although this is totally not anything like that except that the main character has extraordinary powers.

And now here’s the exciting calling card I made for Girl | Alien: (I redacted my phone when I made the image to put up here, not a typo).

girl.alien biz card


girl.alien biz card2