On July 12, I made my way through the heat and humidity to the Century Plaza Hotel in order to check in for Pitchfest 2013. Around 4:00 PM I went down to register which only took a few minutes. At 6:00, the introduction and Cocktail Reception began. Keith from AuthorSolutions made a brief speech and then Robert Kosberg,i.e. “The King of the Pitch” began his speech. It was informative, but since he would be the main speaker the next morning, I half-listened and politely applauded when he finished. The rest of the evening I spent speaking to other authors and handing out my business cards.
Among the many people that I met were Rev. L D Giles and her husband, Carol Welty Roper, Glenn Parris, and Carl Gregory Williams. Later, after the sun had set, I got together with some other authors and we pitched our stories to each other. The most outgoing of the group was Kate (sorry,but I didn’t get her last name), who with some liquid backup, encouraged some of the more shy members of the group (me included) to give their presentations. All in all, this was what I would consider the best part of the “convention”.
The next morning, after breakfast, we listened to Mr. Kosberg’s lecture which was sprinkled with some funny stories. Then, after a short break, it was Practice Pitching Time! This was the most nerve-wracking because, after listening to suggestions to the authors who pitched before me, I was scratching out and editing what I had brought which I thought would go over well. Despite there being about 20 people going before me, I was still nervous and was not quite successful in presenting in under 2 minutes.
After lunch, I had my taped interview. This wasn’t as bad as the pre-pitch and posing for some of the pictures was hilarious. Then, at 3:50 PM, it was GO time! I went to table #4(my lucky number) and spoke as quickly and, hopefully, as intelligently as I could. It wasn’t until the final table that I managed to get my pitch done under the 2 minute limit. For the most part, the people we pitched to were nice and made me feel relaxed. One person, however, threw me off by asking questions during my pitch. After I finished all seven tables, I was so relieved. Now, with fingers crossed, we’ll see what happens. At 5:30, we had a brief summation, a raffle, and farewell! I went up to the Bellhop Station, got my bag, and hoofed it to the nearest bus stop. As to the question “Would I go to another Pitchfest?”, I say (and I did), “it depends on how well this helps my book to get sold”.