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Old 03-19-2014, 01:08 AM   #1
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B&N Week 169: Are You An Effective Pitch Writer


We’ve got another Tuesday! You know what that means, right? Another Bolts & Nuts question!

This week’s question: are you an effective pitch writer?

Face it—pitch writing is challenging. And it doesn’t help that there is a lot of misinformation out there about what a pitch is and what it is supposed to do.

A comic book pitch is a document that is no longer than two pages, and its only job is to sell an idea to a publisher. So, the pitch should tell the entire story, tell a story arc, tell a character arc, and leave no question unanswered. It has to gain the interest of the publisher, and it has to do it in the least amount of words possible.

A pitch is not a logline. It is not a boiling down of the idea to a sentence or two. That doesn’t help anyone.

A pitch is not boring. It tells the story, not the backstory. If the backstory doesn’t make it into the story itself, it shouldn’t be in the pitch. If you put the backstory in the pitch, it’s going to be boring, and you won’t sell your idea.

A pitch is not confusing. It should be easy to follow, and not be scattered all over the place.

Click here to read more.
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Old 03-20-2014, 10:02 AM   #2
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Good stuff! I have a couple of questions for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Forbes
-Describe two arcs. The first arc is the character arc. The editor should know where the character starts and how they change through the story. The second is the story arc. How the single story begins and ends. [If you’re swinging for the fence and are trying to do an ongoing series, then describe the opening story arc.]
What if, rather than an ongoing series, I'm writing a long but self-contained story- say, something like Bone. Do I write a pitch for the whole thing, or just for the first installment?

If this story has an ensemble with no clear central character, should I restrict the character arc description to just one character? Try to briefly describe the arcs of several characters? Or merely note that there are several equally-weighted characters and descriptions of their character arcs are available on demand?
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Old 03-20-2014, 02:03 PM   #3
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Remember the overthinking? This is part of it.

Long story? Treat it like an ongoing and just do the first arc.

Large cast? Treat it like a team, go over the main figures and how they interact, and keep it moving.

For the cast, there has to be someone whose "story" it is. Give that character's arc, and mention the others. Not everyone has a large role to play in every x-men arc. One character will be the main one.

Hope that helps. Time for sleep. If it doesn't make sense, let me know, and I'll come back when I'm more coherent.
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Old 03-20-2014, 07:03 PM   #4
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Thanks, Steven. That makes sense.
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Old 03-21-2014, 01:47 AM   #5
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Happy to have been of service.
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