It's a truly weird and horrible feeling to be sitting there watching a grown woman, carefully made up, sobbing into a wad of typescript." "Being pitched face-to-face is hard for authors and agents," another agent agrees.
Hoffman's conference experience supports this and similar no-pitch formats. But more and more are just saying "no." They believe the authors who invest time and money to attend deserve more than a few stressful minutes with a bored, exhausted -- and quite possibly grouchy -- agent.Once I stopped congratulating myself for not fainting, farting or collapsing on the floor in a puddle of flop sweat, I realized that the only thing I'd done was risk being turned down for what I said about the book rather than the book itself." When my business partner, Christopher Graham, and I organized the first Backspace Writers Conference in 2005, we scheduled formal pitch sessions for conference registrants. Pitch Sessions The next year, we offered "Skip the Pitch" sessions: small-group workshops in which agents made comments on authors' opening pages in a relaxed, informal setting.However, we soon discovered that this yielded a line of waiting authors who looked like they were about to undergo root canals, and a passel of agents who complained about how much they disliked pitch sessions. Authors got individual feedback, and by listening to the agents' comments on the other' materials, they came away with a better sense of what worked and what didn't."In addition to the speed dating, Library Lovers' Day is a chance for everyone to reconnect with the library and share the library love." The Library Lovers Day initiative, coordinated by the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA), aims to raise the profile of the services which libraries offer."Public libraries provide access to information and resources which have been carefully curated, chosen because they are high quality and meet their community's needs," said Mrs Delahunt.Singles aged 35 to 55 who love to read and are looking for that someone special, are invited to attend and participate in the speed dating.Participants are asked to bring along their favourite book as an icebreaker for the conversations.Move over St Valentine because 14 February is also Library Lovers' Day and Tamworth Library will be celebrating.Tamworth Library will be hosting Library Lovers' Literary Speed Dating, on Thursday 11 February at 6pm, just a few days before Valentine's Day.But rather than deal with the pressure of rejecting you to your face, they'll say something like 'Well, I don't know.For something like this, it's all in the writing.' They'll ask you to mail them the first three chapters, and then they'll glance at them for about five seconds and then pass, politely, with their standard rejection letter." Reports one author, "The one time I pitched a novel, the person I pitched to asked me to send exactly the same package I would have sent as an unsolicited submission.