Pitch Perfect @ #pitmad

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#pitmad is a Twitter event, a twelve hour window today during which you can pitch your novel to agents via a twitter post. The post must include the hashtag #pitmad and the genre of your novel (ie Adult, Young Adult etc..) – which leaves about 135 characters with which to pitch your MS and is an excellent way to hone your ‘elevator pitch’.

For those of you unfamiliar with the phrase, ‘elevator pitch’ is a Hollywood term script writers use fo the one/two line story synopsis one might use to sell one’s screenplay if one had the good fortune to run into Stephen Spielberg in an ‘elevator’ – and wished to use those 30 seconds to impress upon the director, your script’s great potential. The most cited example of an ‘elevator pitch’ is Star Wars being touted as ‘Jaws in Space.’

Getting to the crux of your story is crucial for a writer. Nonetheless, it is surprising the number of writers who are unable to sum up the kernel of their tale. And if you can’t, you’ve got a problem. You may have to finish your novel before you figure out the essence of your story but you do need to know what this is before you submit to agents.

For fun (useful fun!), I decided to write ‘twitter pitches’ for most of my recent work. See below or follow me on Twitter:

Novel THE HOLE IN THE MOON: Self-centred Irish dwarf leaves girlfriend & follows sexy Hungarian into kooky cult – redemption via 3 crones.

Radio Drama THE DAFFODIL: Closet-case narcissist hire alcoholic Eurovision has-been for singing lessons, forcing both to face their true selves.

Radio Drama COW: Infertility & arrival of Hungarian woman unsettle Irish couple. Howevr friendship develops & both women come to new world view.

Stageplay SHELLAKYBOOKY: Expats in Budapest are ignorant of host country/culture until son’s graffiti obsession unwittingly ignites revolution.

Stageplay SHEILA-NA-GIG: Opposing philosophies battle as diverse inhabitants of island vie for possession of recently unearthed female carving.

Stageplay ANGEL OF SZEPFALU: A legacy-focused racist mayor, a bitter Roma ghost & a technophobe blogger in farcical tale regarding human hubris.

 

Would love to read yours…

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About suehealy

Literary Manager at the Finborough, Sue Healy is an Irish playwright with a track record in stage and radio. Her most recent play, Imaginationship (2018), enjoyed a sold out, extended run at the Finborough and was later selected for a staged-reading at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough. Her previous stage productions include Cow (Etcetera Theatre, 2017) and Brazen (King’s Head Theatre, 2016), funded by Arts Council England. Her short plays have been performed at the Criterion (Criterion New Writing Showcase), Arcola (The Miniaturists) and Hackney Attic (Fizzy Sherbet Shorts by Women). Her radio work includes nine plays broadcast on BBC Radio 4 (Opening Lines winner), WLRfm and KCLR96fm. She has been an interviewed finalist for BBC Scriptroom 12, Eamonn Keane Playwriting Prize, Nick Darke Award and Old Vic 12 New Voices. Her screenplay was shortlisted for the Shorelight Award. Sue’s prose has won The Molly Keane Award, HISSAC Prize, Escalator Award, Meridian Prize and has been published in nine literary journals and anthologies including: The Moth, Flight, Tainted Innocence, New Writer, Duality, HISSAC, New European Writers. She has been writer-in-residence on Inis Oírr, Aran Islands, and at the Heinrich Boll Cottage on Achill Island. She has also benefitted from annual artist residencies at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, and at Ginestrelle, Assisi in Italy. She spent eleven years in Budapest, editing Hungary A.M. She has a PhD in modern theatre history (Royal Court Theatre) and is a UEA Creative Writing MA alumna. Sue is currently an Associate Lecturer in Playwriting at the University of Lincoln and the University of Portsmouth. She tutors Creative Writing at City Lit. View all posts by suehealy

4 responses to “Pitch Perfect @ #pitmad

  • Mariah Klein

    This is a great exercise for writers—whether or not you post your pitch on Twitter. Thanks for sharing your examples!

  • L.S. Engler

    Thank you for posting this; the timing is perfect! What a novel concept, too. How fortuitous that this event falls on precisely the day and time of day I’m dedicating myself to my writing!

  • Maribeth

    I pitched and struck out. Last time I got two requests but nobody nibbled this time. It’s so exciting when you get a star showing someone favorited your tweet but so depressing when you keep hitting refresh and see no one responding. Lol. If you did pitch, hope you did well.

  • 5thshadeofmist

    This is inspiring, and now I’m trying to think of elevator pitches for all my stories…

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