There's a cool event going on in about a week called Pitchapalooza, kind of an American Idol for writers. A certain amount of participants will get the chance to pitch their book to a panel of authors and agents for just a minute. A pitch is different than a query in that you're not just trying to sum up the life of your book (characters, motives, etc) in a few sentences, with a pitch you're actually describing what kind of book it is, how you're qualified to write it, what it's about, and where it will fit on the shelf at your local bookstore. You're basically selling your book.
I was really racking my brain last night trying to figure out how a one-minute pitch would work though. One whole minute. Spoken. Out loud. In front of real people. Really, really important people. Gah! I'm so afraid that if picked I'll get up there and blurt out, "I wrote a fiction novel! Oooooh." Like Ralphie from A Christmas Story, I want a football! "No, no, I didn't mean fiction novel, everyone knows that's an in joke, haha. I meant to say that I wrote a mainstream novel. It's called Woodsocket '79 and it's a voyeuristic satire with a bit of literary thrown in." You never know what your brain and mouth are going to do when you step up to a podium. Let's hope mine cooperate.
A pitch can also be summed up like something you'd read in a tv schedule for a movie. I came up with two that would work:
Various characters are brought to life in a voyeuristic look at small town America.
A small town construction worker finds it hard to cope after his wife dies suddenly in his arms before giving birth to an illegitimate child.
So that's it. If anyone has a suggestion or has been to this type of thing before, please feel free to comment. As always, have a beautiful day!