Spring is here, and the writers conferences will soon follow. I volunteer at the American Independent Writers‘ conference in Washington, DC, and the most popular event is the pitch session.
I’ve pitched to three agents. Practice does not make perfect. No matter what I did, when it got close to the session time, my nerves were on fire. As each minute marched by, the ratchet on my nerves tightened until I thought I would burst.
I thought volunteering would help. I’d get to observe the agents and see them as people. When I was doing queries, the agent was this distant person laying down the stamp of doom: REJECTED. In person, the agents were nice people. They drank coffee or Diet Coke and liked chocolate chip cookies.
Didn’t help. During the last pitch session, I battled to keep from imploding and bouncing off the walls. An agent noticed and asked “Are you nervous?” I lied: “A little,” and managed to survive it without embarrassing myself. A month later, I received the rejection.
What kind of experiences have you had at pitch sessions? Did you find them easy or approach them with mind-numbing terror?