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Writers Ask: Elevator Pitches and Caviar Dreams

Lots of websites and conferences promise to help you craft an “elevator pitch” for your novel. But is that something writers will ever use? This week we’re talking agent queries, the good and bad of writers’ conferences, and a few scams writers should avoid, like agents charging fees. We also answer a question about confident protagonists, specifically: How do you create a confident character without veering into a parody of confidence?

Other talking points include: AWP table antics, dirty Valentines, overalls, faking your own death, selling a novel, good agents vs. not-so-good agents, dramatic irony, how to pronounce the word ‘quixotic,’ and Tom’s forthcoming novel.

For more on “agent” Melanie Mills, here are a couple stories worth checking out.

For a hilariously pedantic/pissy argument about how to pronounce the word ‘quixotic,’ check out this Wiki discussion.

As promised on the episode, here are a couple photos Mike took while Tom sold his novel in a Wawa parking lot in Delaware.

"Silver Linings Playbook? Never heard of it, sir."

“Silver Linings Playbook? Never heard of it, sir.”

Half-eaten hot dog, sneaker that's seen better days.

Half-eaten hot dog, sneaker that’s seen better days.

Oh, and here’s a photo of Dave Housley from the early 90s, from the Barrelhouse archives.

"Hey Lance, if this doesn't work out, what do you think about starting a lit mag?"

“Hey Lance, if this doesn’t work out, what do you think about starting a lit mag?”

As always, you can stream the episode right here on our site, or download the mp3 file. Or check us out in the iTunes store, where you can subscribe (for free) and never miss another episode. While you’re there, do us a favor and leave a quick review, which will help us reach new listeners.

Thanks for listening! And come back next week for more!


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