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Intern Files

Intern Files – Super Intern Contest!

Hi Everyone!!
This post is a little late, but the contest is still going on!! This feels slightly self-serving (which I get uncomfortable with), but I wanted to spread the word AND I’m always up for helping my fellow writers!
So I’m going to be part of something cool. My bestie CP, Brenda Drake is doing a fun contest where 30 lucky peeps get to have my unbiased opinion on their pitch. Fun, huh? There’s prizes!
Wanna know what?
Thought you’d never ask! Okay, the deets are below (in Brenda’s words, ’cause she’s better at this stuff and has a grazillion contests) Good luck!
We had many participants of The Writer’s Voice ask what was wrong with their pitch and why it didn’t make it into the contest. There are so many reasons why an entry might not have been chosen. Tastes are subjective. There were 200 entries and we each could only pick ten. There were many I wanted, but had to pass on. So for me, it came down to knowing if I could make a difference, if I could coach the writer, and if the premise excited me. 
Anyway, I got to thinking (I know dangerous, right?) and came up with an idea to have my CP and one of my besties, Erica M. Chapman, who’s an agent intern for Louise Fury with L. Perkins Agency tell thirty lucky writers when she stopped reading their pitches or which ones would make it out of the slush pile. 
Not enough? My other besties, Shelley Watters and Monica B.W. and I are giving away critiques as prizes. Plus you never know, if Erica likes any of the entries enough, she just might recommend them to Louise Fury.
How it’s going down … 
Enter in the Rafflecopter below. You can earn many entries. On June 9th will select 30 lucky winners to participate in the Super Intern Contest. This is not for the faint of heart, so don’t sign up unless you can handle the honesty. I will post the 30 winners along with instructions on June 10th, so check back then to see if you won. You must be ready to email me your pitches immediately. Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Brenda, Monica and Shelley are great at what they do! I’m excited to work with them on this.
So get those entries in!!
See you in the trenches ;o)
<3 Er

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Intern Files – Quick Note About Louise Fury’s Query Files

Hello Everyone!!

I hope you are all doing well!! I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but I’ve been tweeting my way through fabulous agent, Louise Fury’s slush pile. Our hope with this is to help aspiring authors by giving them a look into the query pile from the eyes of an intern. I’ve never been in the slush pile other than IN the pile itself, so this has been eye-opening. Being Louise’s intern is an amazing experience. One I hope to make last for a long time ;o)

Just a quick explanation about the files I’ve been tweeting about. 

Rejection File – has queries/pages that get read by Louise first then at least one other person. 

Reconsider File –  has queries/pages that are read by at least two different people for a total of four times. This is done because Louise thinks they have merit and she wants to seriously consider the writing and concepts. She is unable reconsider everything and can’t read everyone’s full manuscript, but she does try to give these particular queries a chance.

There are other folders too, but these are the two I’m able to view and comment on as of now ;o) 

A few notes about the tweets. I won’t tweet specifics about ANY query or pages. All my tweets will be general things I’m noticing about why I do or do not like something. Also, remember these tweets are MY OPINION, not necessarily Louise’s. That’s not to say, she doesn’t agree with what I’m tweeting, but I want to make that distinction. Louise is in support of me tweeting. I know. She’s AWESOME ;o) 

If you have any questions during the tweets, I’ll try and answer them as soon as I can. OR you can ask here too. 

A more extensive blog post will be coming on Louise’s blog! So make sure to look out for that later this month.

Good luck out there!! See you on twitter ;o)

<3 Er

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Intern Files – Pitch-a-Palooza at RT 2012

Hi Everyone!!

I hope you are having a fabulous week! I’m trying to get back into the swing of things after the RT convention in Chicago last weekend! Whew, it was AWESOME but wow, it totally drains you. Am I right? It was my very first conference so I learned a ton! I had so much fun and met so many great people. I FINALLY got to meet my sista-from-anotha-motha Brenda Drake. AND I got to meet the lovely agent I’m interning for Louise Fury! I also got to hang with Shannon Duffy and Rachel Harris. AND I bonded with my separated-at-birth twin, Cecily White ;o)

Anyhoo. It was amazing, fantastic, unforgettable. The panels were helpful and provided me with enough insight to power through revision fifteen-million-and-forty-two. No, really. It feels like that some days…

So, I was lucky enough to be asked by awesome agent Louise Fury to sit-in on some pitches with her at the Pitch-a-Palooza (that is not as easy to spell as it looks and also, there are a lot of paloozas out there, just sayin’)

It was an excellent experience and the pitching writers were wonderful, brave souls. I thought they all did a great job! There were several times I leaned over and said “I want that one! Can I read that one!” There’s some great stuff out there, folks ;o)

Now, I’m going to share what I saw. A total unbiased look at pitching from the perspective of an intern sitting next to a wonderful agent with a nice long line of eager writers. This is so subjective, so keep that in mind. This is my opinion and mine alone. Take some of my advice, leave some of it. No worries, I’m here to share what I’ve learned through the process.

So when pitching you may start out looking like that picture over there. Nerves in your throat, palms sweaty, stomach churning. It’s okay, I totally get it.

This may cause you to blurt out your entire query instead of just talking to the agent or editor. If you do, that’s okay, just know, you’ll have to repeat everything again, because we can’t understand you when you talk that fast. Trust that agents and editors are people too, and they WANT you to succeed, so slow down and draw them into your story.

Also, and I can’t stress this enough. PLEASE have your manuscript complete before you pitch. Agents and editors are looking for completed work. And we all know a story isn’t even close to done when you type in THE END. So if you’re pitching something that’s not even at that point, you have a LONG way to go. The end is really the BEGINNING of revision. 

Try to make your pitch conversational. It’s kind of strange hearing a pitch where it sounds like you’ve written it out and your reading it off a page. Which I do understand, cause I forgot stuff too, but I liked the writers that pitched their story, but said it in a way that sounded like we were having a cup o’ coffee.

Know the genre’s the editor and agents represent. Do your homework. This is your chance to SHINE!

Know the PLOT of your story and where the CONFLICT happens, even the chapter. Louise asked several times WHERE something happened in the story. And I have to admit the ones where the plot and hook weren’t stated were the ones that had me scratching my head. I know two people fall in love and they’re better for it, but WHAT HAPPENS to them during this love. What outside influences come in to try and tear them apart.

It’s good to know your plot, but don’t say everything that happens. Agents and Editors just want to get the meat of your story, not every sub-plot and character flaw. You know your story so well by the time you pitch it (or you should) know what gets people hooked and concentrate on that. What do people always comment on when you tell them about your story? Is it your premise? Your main character? The inciting incident? Those are what will sell your story to them.

So, after pitching you may feel like the picture over there.

Have no fear. It is HARD to know what someone writes like from a pitch. VOICE, writing quirks, style, those are all things that could show in the writing and not the pitch. If you write a great story, don’t worry about flubbing a pitch. You’ll get the next one. Or you’ll get an agent/editor through a query or a referral. There are other ways ;o)

Then you can look like the picture below when you get that agent, or sell that book, or get the movie deal. Whatever happens. WRITING trumps it all. It just does. But you knew that already ;o)

How do you feel about pitches?
So, this is a new thing, these intern files. Do we like it? Am I just talking out my ass? 

Have a wonderful rest of the week!!!

<3 Er

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10 Things I’ve Learned About Being a Lit Agent Intern for 10 Minutes…

Hi Everyone!!

I hope you are all doing well! It’s feelin’ like July out there!! I’m not complaining…

So. I got some amazing news tonight. After a conversation full of “No way’s?” and “I’m so excited’s,” I am now an intern for Awesome Agent, Louise Fury at L. Perkins Agency!! Our story is one of mutual loves (Divergent & deep dish pizza) and thanks to my friend, the uber cool, Brenda Drake, Ms. Fury and I connected and *poof* An Intern was born.

I sure hope I can live up to that picture over there.

I’m THRILLED to have this opportunity. I keep wondering if someone is playing a trick on me. *looks under the chair*

So after a lengthy, informative and downright awesome conversation with Ms. Fury, I learned a TON! And I’ll mention, that Giordanos’ Chicago deep dish pizza came into the conversation and one of us ordered it online and is having it delivered tomorrow! LOL. It’s not me, sadly. ‘Cause I had to look up how to spell it and it totally made me hungry for one. Also, I called it Ghirardelli (which in a strange coincidence I also had to google how to spell) on the phone with her. You know, the chocolates? Whoops. AND now I want chocolate.

Okay. So before I get too off topic – it’s been known to happen… HA.

10 things I’ve learned about being a lit agent intern for 10 minutes… 

1. Don’t let anyone tell you, you can’t gain something from social media. From meeting Brenda in 2010 to DM’ing with Ms. Fury, it all happened online.
2. Louise Fury knows her stuff.
3. Agents have just as hard of a time waiting as we do. Who knew? Makes sense if you think about it.
4. If an agent asks for your manuscript, send it as soon as possible. Agents may not have the same amount of time to read it as they did when they first asked. (Does that make sense? I had to read that sentence twice.)
5. Agents are people, like you and me. I felt SO comfortable talking to her. She is so nice and thoughtful.
6. She told me my writing will improve by reading for her. So, if you see writers’ work in workshops or blogs, like the After the Madness Workshop or Miss Snark’s First Victim Blog it may help YOU as much as them ;o)
7. Clients come first. But, every writer is important.
8. There are a lot of people paying someone to query for them??? WHY?
9. Certain things about your query will stand out. I remember titles more than the writing, but she remembers certain phrases and if someone has a unique of writing something.
10. There ARE people that will help you. There ARE people who want to see you succeed.

I’m seriously SQUEEING about this opportunity and I will share what I learn along the way! She’s actually encouraging me to, which is totally cool. I think this goes without saying, but I feel the need to say it. I won’t share any specifics about manuscripts. Or really anything about them. My posts will be about my journey into the world of interning and other stuff. I can’t wait!

What do you think? Anything you can add about how you feel about the industry? Have you interned before? I could probably add some more, but 10 and 10 had a nice ring to it ;o)

What’s coming up…

Staring Monday March we’ll be having some guests in our mosh pit! Two different writers each day next week (maybe longer) will share their work with us. I’ve been asked to critique their first 250 words and you can too! Awesome bloggers, Shelley WattersBrenda Drake & YAtopia are participating too! So check back on Monday to see what happens ;o)

Wow. That post was like a journey. Seriously, all the links and the googling of words I can’t spell. Whew! Are you as tired as I am? I know, I’m lame. People blog every day and have more links than me. It could have something to do with the American Idol in the background… Go Phillip Phillips & Colton!!

Have a great rest of the week. We’ll see you on Monday!

<3 Er
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