Monday, January 16, 2012

A Vote of Confidence

Brilliant sunshine beckoned to play and over 80 writers ignored the invitation. Instead, we crowded a meeting room, wiggled on folding chairs to find a comfortable position and scribbled notes to catch the pearls of wisdom scattered by two prominent literary agents. Michael Larsen and Elizabeth Pomada began their Northern California literary agency in 1972.
Their presentation, The 6 Cs for Becoming a Successful Writer in the Digital Age delivered many wonderful suggestions to promote one’s work. It is not enough to be a mesmerizing storyteller, now writers must be the barker that calls attention to their work.
After the lecture, I sat with Michael and pitched a non-fiction book, “A Rat in the Toilet and other Senior Moments” a memoir of my years as general manager at a senior retirement community in southern Arizona.
Good news, Michael read a sample story and declared, “You are gifted, that is clear.”Bad news, the subject material does not fit this agency. He advised me to query smaller publishers and predicted, “It is good enough and you will get it done.”
Michael and Elizabeth are the co-founders of the San Francisco Writers Conference held each February. I would love to attend, but it will not be this year. My goal is to bring a finished novel to the 2013 conference. Over 100 agents, authors, editors and book industry professionals appear at this event and they are all looking for new writing.

While chatting with Elizabeth, I mentioned my current work, a thriller titled El Puma.  Ernesto de Leon is a owerful drug czar in Mexico.  Raquel, the orphaned girl he raised, discovers he was responsible for the deaths of her birth parents.  Elizabeth asked me to send it to her when it is finished.  Yes, Elizabeth, you will be the first agent I contact.

I'm glad I said no to the sunshine and stayed in my seat, even if my butt did fall asleep.

Elizabeth Pomada and me at the Redding Writers Event.
Michael Larsen is sneaking into the photo from the side.


1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed taking you to the conference and taking the pictures so you can remember the moment in time. I know you'll become the writer you've always mean't to be.