FyreCon is lining up a stellar list of agents and editors who will not only accept pitches from authors at the con, but who will also help train authors on how this pitching thing is supposed to go, anyway.
Some of the amazing pitching activities we’re planning include the following:
Individual Pitch Sessions: You know the drill – you and the editor or agent of your choice will be secluded together for ten minutes. You’ll pitch your story and, if your story appeals, she will ask to read more. At FyreCon, though, it doesn’t end there. Whether she wants to read more or not, your agent or editor will tell you how to improve your pitch and/or your query letter so that, even if your story wasn’t a good fit, you’ll leave knowing how to improve. (Cost $20.00)
Group Pitch Sessions: Like Individual Pitch Sessions, but you’ll be in a room for 50 minutes with the agent/editor of your choice AND four other authors. You’ll each still have 10 minutes to pitch and get feedback, but you’ll also benefit from hearing the feedback given to the other authors. Win x5. (Cost $20.00)
We’re also planning some separate super-fun (free) events to help train authors how to pitch correctly.
Terri Baranowski is a writer, speaker, editor, literary agent, and founder of Gateway Literary and Bluestocking Editorial. With over twenty years experience working with writers, she has prepared numerous manuscripts for publication and is currently specializing in hybrid contracts designed to meet the diverse needs of today’s author. Terri graduated with a B.A. in English from Brigham Young University where she was a writer and key player in the development of an Alternate Reality Game (ARG) involving various new media platforms to promote The Book of Jer3miah, a webisode series that received New York Times recognition. She also developed a television series for BYU-TV and assisted in the creation and editing of The Criterion, BYU’s first literary criticism journal. The author of several award-winning humorous essays, Terri has also served as guest feature columnist, and was instrumental in the formation of a few critique groups, all of which have given her the preposterous idea that she is a writer. Her current frustrations over the uncooperative characters in her firstaspired-literary- but-morphing- into chick lit novel, Chimera, are beginning to make her think otherwise. Terri resides in Vineyard, Utah with a couple of unruly Shih Tzu’s, a mile-high slush-pile, and anindomitable Polish spirit. www.gatewayliterary.com
Michelle Witte is a literary agent with Mansion Street Literary Management specializing in children’s fiction and nonfiction. As an agent, her tastes vary widely, and she represents authors across the spectrum of kids books, from illustrated board and picture books to middle grade and young adult fiction and nonfiction.Michelle is always on the lookout for fascinating stories that are well told, especially those with a distinct and distinctive voice. Her published work includes Happy Little Accidents: The Wit and Wisdom of Bob Ross and The Craptastic Guide to Pseudo-Swearing. She lives in Utah.
Lisa Mangum has worked in the publishing industry since 1997. She is currently the Managing Editor for Shadow Mountain Publishing and has worked with several New York Times best-selling authors, including Ally Condie, Brandon Mull, James Dashner, and
Jason F. Wright. While fiction is her first love, she also has experience working with nonfiction projects (memoir, educational, cookbooks, etc.) and some children’s picture books. Lisa is also the author of four national best-selling YA novels (The Hourglass Door trilogy and After Hello) as well as several short stories and novellas. She has also edited three anthologies about unicorns and dragons. She graduated with honors from the University of Utah, and currently lives in Taylorsville, Utah, with her husband, Tracy.
JOHNNY WORTHEN is an award-winning, best-selling author, voyager, and damn fine human being! He is the tie-dye wearing writer of the nationally acclaimed, #1 Kindle best-selling ELEANOR, THE UNSEEN. Among his other excellent and very read-worthy titles are the adult occult thriller BEATRYSEL, the award-winning mystery THE BRAND DEMAND, and the genre bending comedy-noir THE FINGER TRAP, winner of the Diamond Quill for best book of the year. And of course the continuation of THE UNSEEN Trilogy, with CELESTE and DAVID which also have won awards. Trained in stand-up comedy, modern literary criticism and cultural studies, Johnny is a frequent public speaker, teacher and blogger. He’s an instructor at the University of Utah and an acquisitions editor for Omnium Gatherum, a publisher of unique dark fantasy, weird fiction, and horror.
Jason King is a published fantasy author with Curiosity Quills and Immortal Works. He hosts the Flash Fiction Friday iTunes podcast. He’s an editor, online Marketer, and the founder of Immortal Works Press. Born in Salt Lake City Utah, Jason grew up on a steady diet of anime, science fiction, Dungeons and Dragons, JRPG’s, and chocolate cake donuts. By some inexplicable cosmic anomaly Jason managed to get married, and is the proud father of four children, one of which is certainly destined to one day slay him and absorb his soul. Jason is also a proud “anonymous” member of the Space Balrogs comedy troupe, and yes, he has poll-danced – there is photographic evidence. Jason has too many websites to keep track of, but his main online homes are: http://www.authorjasonking.com/ Author page http://www.immortal-works.com/ Company page http://authorjasonking.blogspot.com/ Personal page in which Jason blogs about being a C+ Mormon.
Penny Freeman is the editor-in-chief of Xchyler Publishing, an imprint of Hamilton Springs Press. Under her editorial direction over the past five years, authors have garnered numerous awards, including Chicago’s Best (Alyson Grauer, 2016 runner up), National Indie Excellence Ward (JD Spero, 2014 finalist), the Adirondak Center for Writing Children’s Literature (JD Spero, 2014 winner), The Whitney Award (Anika Arrington, 2014 finalist), Cygnus Award, Chanticleer Book Reviews (J.M. Salyards, 2014 first place), and the League of Utah Writers (Candace J. Thomas, 2013 Diamond award). Xchyler Publishing specializes in speculative fiction, including high fantasy, urban fantasy, dystopian, science fiction, technothrillers, paranormal, and Steampunk. We pride ourselves in producing intelligent, engaging literature that entertains without resorting to the salacious, brutal, or profane.
New this year, Hamilton Springs Press will accept manuscripts of other genres, as well as titles for our new faith-based imprint.
Why charge for pitches? FyreCon, unlike other writing conferences, has a very low membership fee. We want to make the conference as accessible to aspiring authors and artists as possible. As a result, to offer this specialized service we directly charge those participating in the pitching event. This pays for the agents’ and editors’ time and travel and allows them to know who is serious about the next step.