Conference FAQs

Information about ANWA's Annual Writers Conference.

Conference FAQs


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Pitch Sessions FAQs

What are Pitch & Editing Sessions?

A Pitch session is a valuable opportunity to meet with an editor or agent face-to-face to talk about your manuscript. If they are interested, they might ask to see more of your manuscript. It's the first step to publication!

An Editing session is a great opportunity to sit down with an editor and fine-tune your manuscript before submission or publication. You might find consistent mistakes that you make or receive suggestions to improve your writing.

How long do I get?

$20 pitch sessions with agents last ten minutes; however, this year one of our editors, Heidi Taylor, is offering a manuscript consultation for $50. One of our wonderful volunteers will time your pitch session and let you know when your turn is up. Someone else will be anxious for their own opportunity, so please be respectful and excuse yourself when your turn is done.

What do I bring?

Bring your business cards and a smile. DO NOT bring manuscript pages. If the editor/agent would like to see more, they will request that it be sent via their standard submission methods ... and you'll be able to add a line to your query letter that you met in person and the pages were requested.

Can I pitch more than one manuscript?

The editor/agent might ask you about other projects you have completed, but you will be most effective if you only pitch one manuscript per session. You may pitch the same manuscript to multiple editors/agents.

Can I pitch to more than one editor/agent?

Yes, if there are available pitch or editing session slots you are encouraged to present to multiple editor/agents.

Do I get to choose which editor/agent I pitch to?

Yes. As you complete (or Edit) your registration, you will be able to specify the person you would like to meet with. Pitches are assigned on a first come, first served basis, so register early to guarantee you get your first choice.

What makes a good pitch?

  1. Be confident. Be prepared. Be ready to answer questions about your manuscript. Try to summarize your entire project in one or two catchy sentences. Your pitch is basically a three-part sentence: (Your protagonist) (takes this action) (because of this motivation.) This will grab the editor/agent's attention and make them interested to hear more.
  2. Be finished. The project you're pitching should be completed— if the editor/agent wants to read it you want to have it ready to send them shortly after the pitch!
  3. Know the editor/agent. What will be a good fit for one editor/agent won't necessarily be a good fit for the others. Each editor/agent is different and looking for different types of manuscripts. The best way to know what each person is interested in is by reading their Submission Guidelines on their individual websites.
  4. Arrive 10 to 15 minutes early. If someone does not come in time for their appointment with the same editor or agent, you will be sent in early. Be there when it's your turn. It is your responsibility to show up. Be aware that ANWA will not issue refunds if you fail to arrive for your interview.
  5. Remain calm. Breathe. Find some stress-reducing method to calm yourself when the time comes.
  6. Dress appropriately and be courteous. No matter what their response, be polite and thank them for meeting with you.
  7. Have fun! There really is no reason to be nervous. Agents and editors are human too. They are looking for good books to sell or publish. If you've written what they're looking for, your chance of making a connection is as good as anyone else's.

Is there a waiting list for sold-out pitch sessions?

Yes. If you wish to be put on a waiting list, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and ask to be put on a waiting list for a specific agent.

Bookstore FAQs

Who can sell books at the conference?

All conference faculty and volunteers and all ANWA authors and conference attendees who are registered for the conference are able to sell books in the ANWA Writers Conference bookstore.

Can other items be sold in the bookstore?

Yes. You can also sell CDs or DVDs that you have created.

HOWEVER: You cannot advertise a service (unless it is related to writing or your book) in the bookstore. If you would like to advertise a service or business, click here check out ANWA's sponsorship opportunities.

How will the ANWA Writers Conference bookstore operate?

An independent book selling staff will run the ANWA Writers Conference Bookstore. You do not have to sell your own books.

There will be one central cashier.

Cash, credit and debit cards will be accepted.

The bookstore will be open at scheduled times throughout the conference.

Do I have to pay a fee?

Yes. To cover the costs (cashier and credit card fees) there is a 10% fee for each book sold. The 10% will be deducted from the price you set for your books.

Will you add sales tax?

Yes. Sales tax will be added to the price you set. Do not include sales tax estimate in the price of your book(s).

How will people know the price of my book?

You must insert a business-card sized card, or use your actual business card, and write YOUR NAME, the NAME OF THE BOOK and the BOOK'S PRICE for each copy of your book(s).

Place the card securely in the middle of the books with about 1/4 inch sticking out of the top.

How do I get paid for my books?

When someone buys your book, the cashier will remove the card with YOUR NAME, the NAME OF THE BOOK, and the BOOK'S PRICE and save it.

At the end of the conference, your books' sales will be totaled using the cards. ANWA will deduct the 10% fee from that total.

You will receive payment via check or PayPal approximately four weeks after the conference.

What if any of my books go missing?

You place your books in the bookstore at your own risk.

The bookstore will be locked when the store is closed.

ANWA Committee members will visit often to help keep books secure but there is no guarantee against losses.

If there is any discrepancy between the number of books you placed in the bookstore and the number of cards the cashier collects, you will be paid based on the cards collected by the cashier.

How much room will I have to display my book(s)?

Space depends on how many authors sign up to sell their books.

If 38 authors or less sign up, each author will have half of a 6-foot rectangle banquet table to set up your display.

If 39 or more authors sign up, each author's space will be reduced to accommodate all authors.

You will not be able to sit behind the table to sign or sell your book.

You can leave extra copies of your book in a small box or small rolling suitcase under your half table in the bookstore.

The bookstore will not refresh your display. It is your responsibility to put out more copies as your books are sold.

Some of the tables will line the wall so you can use up to 3-feet of wall space behind the table for posters or banners.

A free-standing or table top display is preferable.

Some tables will run down the center of the room. You will only be able to use a table top display on those tables.

The table space is first-come, first-served. No saving allowed. The bookstore reserves the right to adjust the displays you have set up to fairly accommodate everyone.

When can I set up my books in the bookstore?

The bookstore will be open for authors to set up their book display Thursday afternoon and Friday morning--check with the registration area when you arrive at the conference.

Each author is responsible for setting up their own display.

You may place bookmarks, business cards or other freebies as part of your display.

When will the bookstore be open?

A sneak peak is planned after Thursday evening's workshops as a bonus for Thursday conference attendees.

The bookstore will open during Friday morning registration, and will re-open during lunches and other various posted times.

How do I get a place for my books in the bookstore?

You will be given the option of reserving a place in the bookstore when you register for the conference.

Will we have an opportunity to sign books for people who buy them?

There will be a mass book signing after the end of the conference on Saturday from 6pm-7pm. If you wish to participate in the mass signing, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Announcements will be made about signings and locations as needed.

You may also pre-sign your books before you bring them to the conference and personalize them as needed.


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