I spent the weekend in New York City pitching my second novel to major editors at the Algonkian Writers’ Pitch Conference. As an introductory side note, the conference location was the Ripley-Grier Studios on Eighth Avenue. Throughout the weekend, actors-singers-dancers were rehearsing and auditioning. I was tempted to put my name on the audition list. A very exciting atmosphere. Incidentally, despite the operatic vocalizing and tap dancing, the authors were much, much louder. To the point that one of the actors was overheard to say that “I don’t know who they are, but they’ve been here for two days and they won’t shut up.”
The small group of 15 authors led by author Susan Breen that worked together to craft a pitch couldn’t have been more pleasant, interesting, vibrant or supportive. From memoir to romance, the work ranged widely but interestingly and had, from what I understand, an unusually high response rate from the two editors we know the results of so far. We are still waiting on two more editors to give Susan their “list” of whose manuscripts they would like to see.
When Peter Joseph of St. Martin’s Press requested mine I was thrilled. And when Abby Zidle of Pocket Books did as well, I was ready to jump up and do a back handspring. But a request is still a request and I am attempting to temper excitement with restraint.
New York served itself up as a delicious and varied dish all weekend. I saw the final preview performance of Christopher Durang’s new comedy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike with David Hyde Pierce & Sigourney Williams, who made eye contact with me on the fifth row during her bows. Had drinks at the Palm on 50th. Dinner at Atlantic Grill and Lincoln in the Lincoln Center — we watched crowds stream in there to see Holland Taylor perform her one woman show Ann (would’ve liked to see that). Attended the Friday night preview show of Motown: The Musical and danced in my seat for three hours to Motown classics. Saturday brunch at Isabella’s included a goat cheese and avocado omelette, french fries and raisin bread.
As always, New York herself is the star. I’m crossing all my fingers and toes a bit of the sparkle rubbed off on my pitch and the manuscript fulfills the expectations of the editors who requested it!