To be remembered is a piece of advice that Sandi imparted upon me, and while at our big writer’s conference this past summer, I learned first hand the appropriate, not bumbling, ways to make an impact with the proper approach…
1. Dress the part: Case in point…there was a lovely young woman who wore a bold striped skirt of various colors, with a geometrical patterned blouse that clashed on every account. Now even I do not own Garanimals, but instead of her trend choice being a fashion faux pas, she did what? Exactly, she stood out and even today is being remembered. If I can’t get her out of my mind, think of the agents she sat in front of to pitch. Her outfit was not obscene in any way shape or form, just far from ordinarily boring.
1a. Play the part: Characters from your book? Different culture? use it to your advantage, make your characters work for you. Sell your story. When was dress- up ever boring?
1b. As a dithering and enthusiastic entrepreneur of the written word, I will not be one to make such an emboldened choice when it comes to my apparel, but there is another option that could make a lasting impression: added stand-out, look-at-me jewelry, scarves, belts, man bags. These are choices for the faint of heart.
1c. If you opt out of colorful clothing possibilities then have an intriguing personal bio, make your background a great story of its own. We all can make a great impression by being professional as we demonstrate endearing traits of our personalities.
Another awesome case in point…the first night of our stay a beautiful woman stated in our peer group, in front of a panel of agents, that she was a retired Disney Princess. Now how does one compete with that? It should have been my cue to exit stage right.
2. Pitching to agents at any conference is a huge piece, if you so choose, but the last thing I would like to say about our first experience is to take advantage of all the great information and classes offered at these events. It is invaluable, and you have paid for the information, do not leave short. Network with other authors and enjoy this amazing experience.
3. As in all things of life, be wary, there are still those nasty individuals who are busily looking to take advantage of our delicate egos and complete inexperience in the industry.