November 11, 2010

Memoir Pitch Contest

My agency, Dystel & Goderich Literary Management, has a great blog. Each agent posts every week about whatever is on her or his mind. The posts are funny and informative and reflect each agent’s personality and what they’re passionate about.

Not only that, but you can just tell that it would be a great place to work. They’re such an upbeat and positive lot, and they work together as a great team and support each other and their clients so passionately. Yes, I realize I am very lucky.

Last week on the blog, one of the agents, Miriam, held a contest for the best pitch for a memoir. Boy, did they get some good entries. I’d read and think, this would make a great memoir. I hope this author follows through and writes and gets an agent and publishes, because I’d like to read it!

I read the blog regularly (of course), and so when I read the contest I thought, what the heck, I have a memoir that I would like to write someday, I’ll enter. So I crafted a pitch and posted it.

Mind you, memoir and personal essay are very hard for me. I’m much more comfortable in the fiction playpen. Something about the distance it gives me. I can be totally honest, whereas if I make the protagonist an “I” and have that be my true life, it’s really hard (emotionally). In fact, I played around with a memoir for a bit (for myself, not to publish), and I couldn’t get anywhere until I switched from first-person I to third-person she.

I also love to help my writing friends whenever possible - as I told one friend, I take my support team role very seriously. So I emailed some friends and wrote a bit on Facebook and Twitter about it. Two of my good friends have memoirs and posted great pitches: Ken Olsen and Jeffe Kennedy. I’ve read some of Ken’s, and it is kick-ass. I haven’t read Jeffe’s, but just knowing her work I bet it’s hilarious and touching and wonderful.

You can go here to the DGLM blog to read all our pitches.

Well, the results were in yesterday, and Ken got second and I got third! I’m sure Jeffe was in the running too, because her pitch was very good, as were many of the others.

And now I can walk around with my DGLM water bottle or soup mug and thrust it into people’s faces and say, “See what I got?! See what I got?! I bet you don’t have one of these!” Hehe.

Thank you Miriam and my wonderful agent Stephanie and everyone at DGLM!

Questions of the Day: Do you enter blog pitch or query contests? (I just learn so much from them!) Have they helped you?

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