This Weekend: Agent Pitch Bootcamp for Nonfiction/Memoir Writers (Only 5 Spots Left)

Thanks to the huge success of last month’s agent pitch for fiction writers, we’ve decided to host a 3-day event for nonfiction writers/memoirists. There’s no travel required (which helps save on costs) and the event will not only help you fine-tune your pitch but also get it in front of the eyeballs of agents.

Basically, the Writer’s Digest Agent Pitch Bootcamp for Nonfiction/Memoir Writers gives you instruction on pitching your work, forces you to write/rewrite your pitch, gets your pitch critiqued from a Writer’s Digest editor, allows you to ask questions, allows you to fine-tune it one more time and gets an additional critique from two literary agents (all in one weekend!) Also, this event is limited in number of attendees in order to guarantee each participant gets maximum attention.

The Details:

Bootcamp Dates: Friday, March 23 – Sunday, March 25, 2012 (All times Eastern times) Sign up here!

DAY 1 (Friday):

  • 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM: Live online webinar: Pitch Your Nonfiction Book or Memoir (Chuck Sambuchino – agent expert, author, and editor of WD’s Guide to Literary Agents – will detail the big picture and the fine points of what makes an effective pitch. You can ask questions live!)
  • 2:00 PM:  Saturday morning: At the conclusion of the webinar you’ll be given your assignment: Write that pitch!

Day 2 (Saturday)

  • 10:00 AM: Submit your pitch to the Writer’s Digest editors
  • 2:00 PM: An editor will return your pitch along with a personalized critique.
  • 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM: Chat with Writer’s Digest editors on a message board, gaining additional insight into pitch-writing.
  • 4:00 PM – Midnight: Revise and fine tune your pitch, resend to Writer’s Digest editors.

Day 3 (Sunday)

  • 9:00 AM: Your pitch will be assigned to two agents (for info on the agents involved, see below), both of whom will supply detailed critiques of your work, additional suggestions for revision, or recommendations to start submitting to other agents right away. It’s even possible (but not guaranteed) that they’ll ask to see more material. You’ll receive your critiques no later than 9:00 PM Eastern time.
  • Also in the Morning: Receive two pre-recorded webinars, “How to Write a Non-Fiction Book Proposal,” by Phil Sexton, publisher of Writer’s Digest, and “How an Agent Picks a Client, from Query to Career,” by literary agent Irene Goodman. (You’ll also receive one article and one book download.)

This event is almost sold out, so this is really your last opportunity. Be part of this weekend bootcamp and, in just three days, walk away with a dynamite query built to entice agents.

For more details on the Agent Pitch Bootcamp Weekend, click here.

The Agents:

JOHN WILLIG (Literary Services, Inc.) 
John, who is in his 35th year in publishing, began work as a marketing manager and then editor for HarperCollins. As his interests moved to trade publishing, he became an executive editor at Prentice Hall for business books. While at P-Hall, John enjoyed working with such authors as Henry Mintzberg, Philip Kotler and Jim Collins and acquired Mr.Collins’ first book Beyond Entrepreneurship. In 1991, he decided to become a literary agent and work exclusively for writers. Throughout his career as an editor and agent, John has successfully negotiated over 700 publishing agreements. John is a member of The Author’s Guild and participates at industry events including Writer’s Digest conferences and the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA) conferences. John is the proud father of two sons, both of whom were All-Shore Academic All Stars.

He is seeking: Primarily interested in prescriptive and narrative nonfiction: business and financial investing topics, health, sports, history, true crime, science, reference, careers and personal growth categories.

MARILYN ALLEN (Allen O’Shea Literary)
Marilyn Allen is a literary agent and partner in the Allen O’Shea Literary Agency. Prior to that she spent 25 years doing sales and marketing for various publishing houses. Her responsibility culminated in Associate Publisher and Senior Vice President of Marketing for Harper Collins. Prior to that, she had directed sales and marketing teams for Penguin Books, Simon & Schuster, and Avon Books. Through the years she created many innovative marketing campaigns and managed a host of successful author brands including Dr. John Gray (Mars and Venus), Dr. Laura Schlessinger, Barry Sears (Zone), Dean Ornish, Star Trek, NBA, The Simpsons and worked with many best selling writers including Stephen King, Ken Follett, Mary Higgens Clark and Barbara Kingsolver. Ms. Allen currently represents many authors including New York Times bestseller Regina Leeds, the work-from-home gurus Paul and Sarah Edwards, Julie Fast, Karon Karter, Liz Palika, Julie Jason and Kevin Boyd. She has taught publishing courses at NYU and for Gotham University. She frequently conducts publishing seminars and gives speeches at writing conferences.

She is seeking: nonfiction books with solid marketing platforms in the areas of health, cooking, history, business, science, current affairs, crafts and narrative nonfiction.

BRANDI BOWLES (Foundry Literary + Media)
Brandi Bowles is an agent at Foundry Literary + Media, a full-service literary and media-development agency in New York.

She is seeking: Brandi represents idea and platform-driven nonfiction in all categories, but she’s particularly interested in humor, narrative nonfiction, and big-idea books that change the way we think about the world. Some of her upcoming books include The Hollow Bone: Secrets From the Life of a Reiki Master, The Vice Lords: A History of Wayward Writers, and a memoir from YouTube sensation Ted Williams, the most honest and inspiring story about homelessness you’ll ever read.

DAWN MICHELLE HARDY (Serendipity Literary)
Dawn Michelle Hardy received her Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing: International Trade and her Associate of Applied Science degree in Fashion Buying and Merchandising from The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. Since 2004, Dawn has planned effective public relations campaigns for fiction authors signed to Hachette Book Group, Simon & Schuster and Kensington/Dafina, as well as nonfiction self-published titles on career, health and empowerment.

She is seeking: nonfiction self help, motivational and empowerment, women’s fiction, relationship, pop culture, leadership and non-denominational spiritual titles. Feel free to contact her in reference to any nonfiction subject.

KATHARINE SANDS (Sarah Jane Freymann Literary)
Katharine has worked with a varied list of authors who publish a diverse array of books. Highlights include CityTripping: a Guide for Foodies, Fashionistas and the Generally Syle-Obsessed; Writers on Directors; Ford model Helen Lee’s The Tao of Beauty; Elvis and You: Your Guide to the Pleasures of Being an Elvis Fan; New York: Songs of the City; Taxpertise: Dirty Little Secrets the IRS Doesn’t Want You to Know; The SAT Word Slam; Divorce After 50; The Complete Book of Bone Health; The Safe and Sane Guide to Teeage Plastic Surgery, to name a few. She is the author of Making the Perfect Pitch: How to Catch a Literary Agent’s Eye, a collection of pitching wisdom from leading literary agents.

She is seeking: books that have a clear benefit for readers’ lives in categories with fresh looks at food, travel, lifestyle, home arts, beauty, wisdom, relationships and parenting. Compelling reads in fiction, memoir and femoir.

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One thought on “This Weekend: Agent Pitch Bootcamp for Nonfiction/Memoir Writers (Only 5 Spots Left)

  1. elaine

    I’m looking for agents for my nonrhyming, poetic narrative picture book/ memoir about my experiences in the Peruvian rainforest at night. Does anyone know agents who are interested in this type of manuscript?

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