The Face to Face Pitch

SAWC member, Diane Hester, was published in March this year by Random House. How did she get published?  She pitched her story face to face to a publisher at a conference and was invited to submit her manuscript, which was then accepted for publication.

‘This approach seems to be growing more popular. If you register to attend a conference you can often sign up for a private ten minute pitch session with one of the editors or agents attending. If the editor likes the sound of your story, they ask you to submit some or all of the manuscript. From my experience there is a much higher success rate this way. I think editors view your conference attendance as evidence you are a committed writer which gives you a ‘one-up’ over authors submitting via email. (Also it’s probably harder for them to reject you face to face!)’, Diane said about her pitching experience.  DianeHester_RunToMe-Mid

Diane has kindly shared her pitch speech with us. Although she wrote it, she pretty much memorised it beforehand.

My story, Run To Me, is a 93,000-word woman-and-child-in-jeopardy suspense that I see as Grisham’s The Client meets Nora Roberts Angel Falls.

In a remote logging outpost in northern Maine, a troubled woman saves a young boy from killers who are after him and in the process comes to believe he’s the son she lost two years earlier.

The boy is on the run with information that could put a powerful crime boss in prison. He has no-one. He’s an orphan and so desperate for a mother’s love he discovers he will do almost anything to be the boy the woman thinks he is. But he can see she has problems and he has to wonder, can she go on protecting him from the men who are after him? And will she even want to, once she realises he’s not her son but just some throwaway nobody wants.

When the boy is injured, the woman takes him to the local doctor. The doctor had dealings with the woman before and recognised in her the symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder. Faced with the nature of her son’s injuries he has to ask himself: are his growing feelings for the woman clouding his judgement? Can he believe her wild story about gunmen pursuing them or is she her child’s greatest threat?

Before he can decide, the killers find them and the three are forced to flee into the New England wilds. There, in their struggle to survive and defeat the killers they learn to trust and love one another, emerging a family in all but name.

You can via out more about Diane on her website here.

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