Writers Talk Shop, Novel, and Pitch Conference
     Commentary by conference attendees

     A Conversation With Author Pam Binder

Pam Binder is an Award Winning and New York Times Best Selling author. Pocket Books has published five of Pam's Fantasy Romance novels, including the New York Times best selling anthology, A SEASON IN THE HIGHLANDS. Pam is the President of Pacific Northwest Writers Association, an advisory board member for the Writer's Program at the University of Washington and an instructor in the University of Washington's Popular Fiction extension program.

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Under guided sessions, we learned how to make sure our pitches hit all the right notes. Our workshop leader was dedicated to not only helping us perfect our pitch, but acting as our mentor when we met with editors.

- Pam Binder

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NYC: How would you compare New York Pitch Conference to other writer conferences?

PB: This conference exceeded my expectations. It is a no-nonsense, no frills conference, and not for the faint of heart, but only for writers who know that hard work, knowledge of the industry and the type of book they are writing, is what will help them achieve success.

NYC: What inspired you to write your novel, GRACE OF THE SEA?

PB: While traveling in Ireland, I bought a biography on the life of the sixteenth century Irish pirate, Grace O'Malley. I was intrigued by the vibrant and adventurous woman who defied a culture and a queen and lived life on her own terms.

NYC: How has the story evolved?

PB: GRACE OF THE SEA has evolved in ways I could never have imagined. I've already begun plotting the sequel, and researching other women warriors of Grace's caliber. Attending the workshops helped give me the confidence I needed to trust my instincts.

NYC: Did any editors ask to see your work? How would you characterize your interactions with them?

PB: Two of the four editors I met with asked to see my work and the other two were very interested, but it was not their type of novel. I credit the reception of all four editors to the pitch. It generated questions which helped me explain in more detail the vision of the project. Because of our workshop leader's hard work in getting us prepared for the interviews, my interaction with all of the editors was positive, fun and relaxed.

NYC: What made you choose to attend the New York Pitch Conference?

PB: The concept was unique and refreshing. The New York Pitch Conference workshop didn't pull any punches. It stated they were only interested in writers and authors who had no illusions about the publishing process and the hard work involved in becoming published.

NYC: What did you find most effective about the New York experience?

PB: Being in New York, of course, was energizing. There were a number of effective experiences. We were to bring a one page summary of our project on the first day of the workshop, using an innovative and effective method that later proved invaluable. Under guided sessions, we learned how to make sure our pitches hit all the right notes. Our workshop leader was dedicated to not only helping us perfect our pitch, but acting as our mentor when we met with editors.

NYC: Do you feel the novel improved as a result? If so, in what way?

PB: My novel became a higher concept project because of the New York Pitch Conference experience. I was also encouraged to think of it in broader terms and consider developing a series.

NYC: Where does GRACE OF THE SEA go from here?

PB: GRACE OF THE SEA will be sent to the editors who requested the novel and if the project is accepted, there will be an acknowledgment of thanks for the New York Pitch Conference and its hard working instructors.


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WRITERS AND AUTHORS
TALK ABOUT THE
New York Pitch Conference


Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, Madhu Ghosh. This conference is very different from others in that it is what it says it is. Most conferences try to cram in craft lectures with readings and then interviews with editors and agents, which can get chaotic and confusing.  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, Randy Susan Meyers. The critique isn't for the faint of heart, but is for those who truly want to hear where they need to work on their presentation, how commercial their ideas are, and about the effectiveness of their pitch  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, Stephen R. Levine. My character is sort of a modern day Roskolnikov too smart for his own good and the story has universal appeal. It's not just the story of a BAD RABBI but a man corrupted by power and ego. Hopefully others will see it that way too.  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, Jim Buck. I started looking into agents and publishers last fall and was startled to find how difficult it is for an unpublished author to even get a return letter.  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, writer Christine Stewart, writer in residence at the Creative Alliance in Baltimore, Director of the Write Here, Write Now workshops, founding co-sponsor of the Baltimore chapter of the Maryland Writers Association, and recipient of the Ruth Lilly Fellowship.  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, author Kate Gallison. Her second mystery series featured Mother Lavinia Grey, an Episcopal priest in a small town in New Jersey struggling to keep her church open and solve the occasional murder.  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, Alex Keto. Alex was a journalist for twenty-one years. He joined Dow Jones Newswires and worked New York City as a reporter, in Amsterdam as a bureau chief, and Bonn as a reporter. He returned to the U.S. in 1995 and worked as the company's White House correspondent for ten years.  

Interview with New York Pitch Conference attendee, Michael Kopiec. My father was a soldier who survived three years of nearly constant combat with the Nazis. The story is very exciting, but I kept rewriting until finally, it felt right.  



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