Going Up? Elevator Pitches and More Opportunities

LWB Page 100 Competition

If you’re super-quick (because this ends on Sunday 4th October), there’s still time to enter the LWB (Louise Walters Books) ‘Page 100’ competition, (£6 entry fee) which asks you to submit page 100 – and only that page – of your unpublished novel or novella.

The closing date’s been extended (it was originally September 27th) which might, just might, mean they haven’t had as many entries as they’d hoped for. All the details are here but in short:

1. They’ll publish a longlist on the website on 26th October.
2. A short list of 6 or thereabouts will be announced on Monday 9th November 2020. All short-listed writers will be invited to submit their first three chapters or first 30 pages (whichever is the shorter).
3. The winner will receive an editorial report of their first three chapters/30 pages of their novel or novella. This will consist of a 2000 word report and a marked up manuscript. The winner will also receive four LWB books of their choice
4. Two runners up will each receive four LWB books of their choice.
5. All long-listed authors will also get a paragraph or two of feedback on their entry.

It’s a good opportunity to possibly get some feedback (and a confidence-boost!) on your writing, it’s quite a fun and quirky comp’ and let’s face it, £6 isn’t a fortune. Think of all those take-out coffees you’ve missed out on since lockdown! It’s just a couple of those. Good luck if you decide to enter.

Amanda Reynolds

Psychological Thriller Writer, Amanda Reynolds (whose debut best-selling novel is currently being filmed as a mini series starring Christopher Eccleston, no less!!) is offering a free first chapter critique, over on Twitter.

Again, you’ve got to be quick for this one because I asked her and she’ll be choosing her winner after the weekend. You need to follow Amanda on Twitter and pitch your completed novel in one tweet (ah yes, this is when you need to have that elevator pitch nailed!)

Elevator Pitch

Talking of which… I was asked for the first time (aagh, bites nails) last week, “What’s your novel about?” and I burbled on about ‘Second World War’ and ‘saga’ and luckily, I was literally saved by the bell because someone knocked on the door (it was a Zoom meeting, of course) and my questioner had to dash off.

BUT it made me realise that I really do need to get that sorted, so that when someone asks me – as they invariably will – ‘What’s your novel about?’ I can give a slick (memorized!) answer and not sound like a complete berk. It’s not easy though, is it, to strike the balance between ‘enticing-without-giving-too-much-away’ and ‘not-sounding-too-pretentious’.

I’m sure you know what an elevator pitch is but, just in case, you can read more about it here.

Kate Nash #BookCamp

In case you’re wondering what’s been happening since I told you my news about the Book Camp mentoring programme… well, I’ve agreed a deadline with my agent, of later this month (eek!) to get the first draft of my WIP novel finished, so I’ve been trying to work on that as much as possible.

My maximum is 4 hours in one day and my minimum is… nothing, zilch, nada, nichts (apart from scrolling through Twitter and worrying).

And yes, I know, why am I not working on my novel NOW, instead of writing this? But the thing is, I can’t sit and write for hours on end. (Or even minutes, sometimes..). I need thinking/mulling it over time, time for the subconscious to come up with ideas and solve problems in the plot. I am slow. I am definitely not a fast writer, although I am trying to resist editing as I go along and focus on just getting the words down!

In addition to the writing, the programme of Zoom workshops that we’ve been promised, as ‘mentees’, is starting next week, with one on ‘Plotting and Planning’, which I’m really looking forward to. It will be nice, as well as hopefully learning something, to virtually ‘meet’ some of the other Book Camp participants.

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6 Responses to Going Up? Elevator Pitches and More Opportunities

  1. MARGARET GARROD says:

    Thanks for the heads up on the LWB competition. I passed it to the 2 novel writers in our group and they have both entered.

  2. Eirin Thompson says:

    I think I do tend to ‘edit as I go’ with most material. To not do this would feel uncomfortable. For example, I would struggle to move forward if the rhythm of the existing words didn’t feel right. I’m pretty sure I couldn’t make progress if I was uncertain of a character’s name, say – because how would I know how to write the words around that name without knowing how many syllables were in it and where the emphases were? I don’t think this is a problem – combing, combing, combing as I go along – and I don’t think it slows me down in the long run; in fact, I suspect the opposite is true. I do leave my first draft in the drawer for a while, though, and then come back and do a final edit, too. Of course, we’re all different, but this is what works for me.

  3. Kate Hogan says:

    I need thinking/mulling it over time, too, Helen. Finding that time is particularly diificult at the moment because whenever I sit at the Computer I’m checking the news, reading scientific opinion and research on Covid!!!! When I’m not doing that I’m keeping in touch with family and friends (who I can’t go and see) by telephone or email. So little time for the subconscious to come up with ideas and solve problems. Tough times for us all, so well done to you and all the other writers who are hanging on in there! Good wishes, Kate Hogan.

    • Thanks for your comment, Kate – it’s made me feel better and that it’s not just me! When we first went into lockdown, back in March, a friend (who doesn’t write herself) sent me a text which read, “It’s a great opportunity for you to WRITE!” and my heart literally sank because it was the last thing I felt like doing but try explaining that to someone who doesn’t understand that you need more than just time in order to be creative!! (but if you try to say that, it either sounds like an excuse or very pretentious!). Anyway, I am managing to write now, which I know is very fortunate but I’m definitely also consumed by social media/news and a general low level, constant feeling of worry (as, I’m sure, is the same for many of us).

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