So, did you get swept up in the excitement of #Pitmad? It’s hard not to.
It’s a fun event with the potential to give you a slight edge up the other submissions in an agent’s inbox. Yup, that’s it: a slight edge. While a request on a pitch is a positive thing (and who doesn’t love the instant gratification of a favorite from an agent) there is no guarantee the agent is going to like the manuscript. Yes, of course, people have signed with an agent after having their manuscript requested through #Pitmad but if you participated and didn’t get a favorite, don’t despair. It doesn’t mean much of anything. Really.
(If you don’t know about #Pitmad you can read about it here.)
The #Pitmad feed moves quickly. Very quickly. And let’s be serious. Yes, agents do look in, but they aren’t going to read every pitch. No way. The feed is moving so quick skimming has to be done. Your pitch could have easily been missed by the very agent who is just dying to read a manuscript like the one you pitched.
Not only do you need to have your pitch in the right place at the right time, you have to have a great pitch and as you know, pitches can be hard (although our members did come up with some great ones and got them polished up with the help of other members in our Sub It Club submission support group!) Even if you have an excellent manuscript, your pitch may not have conveyed that, no matter how well you condensed it down to 140 characters.
Most all of the agents who participate in #Pitmad are open to submissions anyway. And there are definitely advantages to good old fashioned querying:
- You get to show a more well-rounded description of your work and yourself.
- Oftentimes you get to send some pages along with your query.
- You get a longer look than a pitch that’s flying by in a fast moving thread. Yes, agents can be quick when going over queries but not as quick as the #Pitmad feed–unless they’re superhuman!
- You can target the agents that YOU are interested in.
- When you query an agent you get to show them that you are keen on working with them specifically, not just trolling for anyone who is looking.
- You can reach agents who don’t participate in things like #Pitmad. Do good agents look in on #Pitmad and make requests? Sure they do. Are there good agents that don’t even bother with #Pitmad because they have enough to do already? Of course.
Sending out your work and asking agents to take you on as a client is a business transaction. Contests and pitches can be a fun way to break up the work of querying and can get you a little leg up at times, but remember, most writers and illustrators connect with their agents in the good ole slush pile. You can too.
#Pitmad is one crazy day of pitching madness. The regular business of querying can happen any day, when YOU are ready. Request or not, if you participated in #Pitmad, congratulations on putting yourself out there. That takes a lot of guts. Now, query on!