How It Works at The New York Pitch


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How it Works at the New York Pitch

Unique Content and Benefits - No Speed, No Slams

The New York Pitch Conference successfully assists and promotes aspiring authors writing in the genres of upmarket and literary fiction, general fiction, serious and light women's fiction, historical fiction, military fiction, mystery/thriller and detective, historical romance, paranormal romance, all forms of adult fantasy/SF, young adult and middle grade fantasy/SF, as well as memoir and narrative nonfiction. As attendees work closely in a relaxed small-group environment with conference professionals (see more below), they are provided with the skills and knowledge necessary to stand a realistic chance of success in today's tough novel market. Please note that the NYC works directly with publishers from major houses who are the decision-makers, as opposed to literary agents who petition the decision-makers. Closer to the market, many of our publishing house editors have upwards of two decades in the book business.

In consideration of the fact that writers must network in the industry, learn how to properly pitch, as well as produce a novel worthy of pitching in the first place, the conference enables them to obtain the following:

  • An opportunity to have their novel manuscript selected and read by acquisition editors from major publishing houses. The odds are currently running 1/3 for selection based on the quality of pitches and writers in attendance (due to workshop efforts to create great pitches and manuscripts, vigorous screening of potential attendees, and the conference itself which attracts top talent). Please understand, however, that selection does not assure publication.
  • Novel deconstruction and analysis from the best qualified industry professionals (editors, authors, and teachers of writing) that addresses the major fictional elements of plot, character, complication, and resolution, among others--the purpose being to not only assist writers with creating competitive projects, but prepare them pre-pitch to receive maximum productive reaction from publishing house editors.
  • Knowledge of the latest bewares, trends, and needs of the book market at the source: the New York publishing world.
  • Ability to directly apply the above knowledge to the matter of the pitch itself, i.e., written and oral emphasis on logs/keynotes, premise/high concept, comparables, credentials, genre, and the composition of the project synopsis.
  • Networking opportunities with industry professionals and other writers in an artistic and relaxed setting. The conference screening process assures writers chosen for the New York Pitch Conference are a few notches above. In other words, writers will not be closed in a room with people who don't know a plot point from a character arc.
  • Opportunities, depending on writer and project, to interact with faculty following the conference for purposes of obtaining agency representation, or editorial assistance, as needed.
  • Project validation or plan for validation. The conference method enables writers to obtain either validation of their novel project (understanding the novel premise/plot is commercially viable), or knowledge of what they must do to create a competitive novel project in the context of today's market.

Writers will shop and pitch, i.e., attend workshops and then pitch their novel to four different editors from major publishing houses during the length of the New York Pitch Conference, all shops and sessions alternating on a fixed schedule. The editors realize this method provides maximum benefit to the writer. If editors see commercial potential in the premise/plot/concept they WILL ask for the ms and read it. Workshop leaders also read work, depending on the needs of the editors and writers.

Please note that writers tapped by publication editors for a manuscript submission during the course of this Algonkian Writer Conference are advised to meet with the workshop editors to discuss, among other things, options for agent representation.

Pre-Conference Work

Prior to the New York Pitch Conference, and following registration, writers will be given pre-conference assignments. These assignments are designed to help the writer perfect their novel or narrative non-fiction project by forcing them to focus on the elements that make for a strong story, as well as a strong pitch, especially one that will attract the attention of editors and agents (see points above). Among these assignments are those included on the Writer's Block forum.

Step By Step Upon Arrival

Upon arrival on Thursday, writers are broken into workshop groups with individual workshop leaders, each group focusing on specific genres (e.g., one group for mystery, thriller, detective, crime and suspense). Placement in workshop groups and subsequent alignment of that group with specific commercial acquisition editors is the decision of New York Pitch Conference staff only. Writers bring their pre-conference notes and draft pitches, and during the course of the workshop on Thursday, writers work to improve their fiction and non-fiction projects as necessary while honing their pitch on a parallel track--each pitch revised to become as interesting, tightly focused, unique and energetic as possible.

The inclusion and the schedule of each pitch session editor is determined by conference staff. The average pitch and post-pitch discussion time with each editor ranges from six to ten minutes, or more, depending on circumstances and the approach of each editor. There are no timers, no slamming, no buzzers or herding.

Daily schedule as follows:

  • Thursday, 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM, writers partition into workshop groups to work on their novels and subsequent pitches.
  • Friday morning, 10:00 AM to Noon, writers pitch their first editor in a group.
  • Friday afternoon, 1:30 to 5:00 PM, writers return to workshop to recap and improve novel and pitch as needed.
  • Saturday morning, 10:00 AM to Noon, writers pitch their second editor in private (workshop leader in attendance for support).
  • Saturday afternoon, 1:30 to 4:00 PM, writers pitch their third editor in private (same as above).
  • Sunday morning at 10:00 AM, writers pitch their fourth editor in private.
  • Sunday afternoon, writers meet with workshop leaders for final recap and strategy session--1:30 PM till 3:00 PM.


The conclusion of the Sunday afternoon recap session marks the end of the New York Pitch Conference. At the final session, writers will meet with workshop leaders who will provide each with a plan for publication, i.e., custom strategies and goals appropriate to guiding the novel towards publication.

Click here for more details about the conference.
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Traditional Novel and Fiction Workshops and Conferences
Algonkian Writer Conferences

- New York Pitch Authors and Books -

It began with "The Fiction Class" by Susan Breen. Going into 2021, the New York Pitch has assisted and networked writers into dozens of agent and commercial publishing contracts. More information and commentary on this subject can be found on our NYC news page. 


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 attendee, best-selling author Pam Binder. Two of the four editors I met with asked to see my work and the other two were very interested ... 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.  

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...  

- Algonkian Writer Events in The U.S. -

Upcoming Algonkian events with only the best faculty, story analysis, pitch training, cross-market craft and market-positioning methodology. All events are enhanced with new pre-event studies, extended consult time with professionals, and an emphasis on making novel as competitive as possible... [more]

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 author, 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, writer Doug Grudzina. Doug writes and edits for Prestwick House, Inc., where his books and writings have won a number of national awards. His short stories have appeared in several publications, and he reviews articles for the National Council of Teachers of English.  

Algonkian Writer Conferences
2020 Pennsylvania Ave, NW
Suite 443
Washington, D.C. 20006

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