Friday, July 20, 8:30–11:30 a.m.
At RWA2018, we will be implementing a fast-and-furious “Speed Pitch” event in which attendees will be able to meet up to fourteen editors and agents over the course of one hour. (Your pitch may promote yourself as a writer or specific book/s.) With this speed-dating-style session, you’ll need to bring your best elevator pitch as you have three minutes to wow an industry professional before the bell rings, and it’s on to the next!
For the Speed Pitch event, editors and agents will be assigned to six rooms, with up to fourteen professionals in each room. Attendees will be able to sign up for a one-hour time block in one room and will be allowed to spend three minutes with each editor and agent in that room. A list of industry professionals assigned to each room will be made available before Speed Pitch registration is open.
PAN and PRO members will be able to register starting May 7. All other conference attendees will be able to participate on a first-come, first-served basis on the day of the event (July 20), as space allows.
Prior to the pitch sessions, participating authors will be asked to provide basic information, and after the event, editors and agents will be given access to a directory that will include contact information for each author with whom they met. The basic information includes your name, current author photo (in case an industry professional wants to reach someone whose face they remember but not a name), email address, website, awards (if any), titles and categories of completed, unencumbered works in process, and a very brief descriptions of WIP.
Questions? Email Carol Ritter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why have editor/agent appointments changed?
The new format maximizes value for authors who sign up, allowing them to meet with and pitch a greater number of editors and agents in a more effective and productive manner.
What if I am not able to sign up for the time slot and room where the editors/agents I am trying to pitch will be?
As in previous years, time available to meet with specific industry professionals is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. The new format provides members with a greater number of potential connections than in previous years. If you are unable to sign up for the time slot/room that you prefer, you may still visit the industry marketplace where you can learn more about the publishing companies and agencies that interest you, and receive information that you can use to tailor your post-conference queries.
Why has the time to pitch changed from 10 minutes to 3 minutes?
This shortened time encourages you to hone your pitch into a concise, intriguing "elevator pitch” that will create a lasting impression on editors and agents. This will also allow you to meet with more industry professionals in one hour than was previously possible. Participating industry professionals will also be able to quickly bring your pitch to mind post-conference when they will be provided an online directory of all authors who sign up for the speed-pitch event, which will include contact information and a description of current works.
Will each room have a mixture of agents and editors or one or the other? Can we sign up for an agent speed pitch session and an editor speed pitch session?
Each room will be a mix of editors and agents. Attendees will be able to sign up for one one-hour session in one room.
What if I don't wish to pitch some of the industry professionals in my room? Can I only see the industry professionals that I want to talk to?
To keep things orderly, we will ask the attendees to meet with every participant for three minutes. Even if you do not feel that the editor or agent is a good fit for your work at this time, this is still a great opportunity to network! Sometimes the greatest connections come when you least expect it.
Why did you do away with publisher spotlights and institute the Industry Marketplace?
With this model, a greater number of publishers and literary agencies will have representatives available to answer questions from attendees.
Will I be able to pitch at the Industry Marketplace?
The intention of the Industry Marketplace is not for authors to pitch their works, but rather to learn more about publishing companies and literary agencies so they are better able to tailor their queries and make publishing decisions post-conference.