by Kelly Carey
Are you ready for the question? You will be asked it by fellow writers at workshops, at conferences, by agents, even by the local librarian. You need to be ready with your answer. You will be asked, “What are you working on?” or “What do you write?” This should be a simple question to answer. But when put on the spot, you will get tongue tied, suffer a burst of bashfulness, and probably freeze up with mini stage fright. The result will be a mumbled and botched response. Worse, it will be a missed opportunity to market your manuscript and explain your writing prowess.
Don’t fret. I have the solution.
You need a Pitch Ring.
Do you remember the flashcards you used in elementary school? The ones you might be using today with your own kids for sight words and math facts? It’s time to employ that method for your manuscripts and create a Pitch Ring.
You will need:
On each index card write the title of your manuscript and then paste or tape your one sentence pitch followed by your one paragraph synopsis to the index card. For help creating your one sentence pitch, check out this great post by author Nathan Bransford.
The longer synopsis paragraph can be grabbed right from your query letters.
Punch a hole through your index cards, and clip them together on your loose leaf ring. Now, every day, review your flashcards. Practice your pitches until they become as automatic as flipping on a light switch when you enter a dark room.
As a bonus, create an introduction flashcard for yourself. This introduction card will help with the more generic “what do you write?” question and can include the information you put in the final bio paragraph in your query letters.
Now when asked the question, “What are you writing?” or “What is your story about?”, you will have a practiced and professional response that will have just the right ring to it – a perfect Pitch Ring!
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