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Writing Twitter Pitches: Really Useful Links by Lucy O’Callaghan

Writing.ie | Resources | Essential Guides | Links for Writers | Selling Your Book
Lucy O'Callaghan

Lucy O’Callaghan

Twitter pitches are 280-character hooks aimed at enticing people to read your book. These pitches can be used at Twitter events such as Pitmad to attract agents, editors, and publishers. Fine-tuning your pitch is essential to grab the attention of these people. We writers often struggle with distilling our stories into a 500-word synopsis never mind something as short as a Twitter pitch! I have put together some articles and podcasts that offer some guidance on how to write great Twitter pitches.

  1. https://thewriteprompt.com/2021/02/23/3-ways-to-write-the-perfect-twitter-pitch/

This article from The Write Prompt tells us that you need the right formula to capture the essence and flow of your story. It shares 3 of the most common and effective methods for writing a Twitter pitch. The common variables that all good pitches should have are that it is all about the hero of your story, don’t generalise, show how unique it is, and don’t forget to include hashtags.

Method 1: Intro – inciting incident – stakes

Method 2: Action centric

Method 3: The when statement

All three methods are explained and demonstrated with examples. The approaches are slightly different, allowing you to experiment and find one that emphasises the most interesting, unique, and appealing parts of your story.

  1. https://www.goscribbler.com/blog/writers-guide-to-twitter-pitch-contests

Twitter contests can be beneficial to writers as they give you the opportunity to grab the attention of an industry professional’s attention, test interest for your story, find a critique partner or beta reader, and hone your pitching skills. However, be aware of the drawbacks of the contests. Because of algorithms, you could have a lack of visibility. You may have a low success rate and there is always the potential for someone to steal your ideas. Go Scribbler shares a list of annual Twitter pitch contests to put in your diary, and share things to know when participating in events, including spending time crafting your pitch, and only pitching a completed and edited manuscript.

  1. https://pitchwars.org/pitmad/

Pitmad is one of the most popular tweeting events and this is the official website. It explains all about the event and how you can get involved. The rules for both writers and industry professionals are explained. Also listed are hashtags to use for age categories, genres, sub-genres, and additional optional hashtags. There is also a handy resource section. This website is worth checking out before you participate.

  1. https://www.manuscriptwishlist.com/2019/04/how-to-craft-the-picture-perfect-twitter-pitch/

Participating in a Twitter pitch contest is not only a great way to get your work in front of agents and editors, but it is also a fun opportunity to give your work visibility and practice your pitching skills. In this article, using three examples: an adult thriller, a YA fantasy, and a picture book, a formula is explained. Lay out in plain terms what your main character wants, what stands in their way, and what they need to do to get it. Keep it short and simple. Pick words carefully to convey the stakes of the story and the relationship between key characters. Add a hook or twist to show it is unique.

  1. https://camcatbooks.com/Blog/TOP-6-PITCHING-TIPS-FOR-TWITTER

In this article, an acquisitions team from Camcat, share their tips and best practices for catching the attention of a publisher or agent. Their top 6 pitching tips include having an eye-catching, original, specific ‘meets’ statement. It’s a great way to capture the essence of your book and show where it fits in its genre by comparing it to multiple established works. Focus your pitch on what distinguishes your manuscript – is it a new take on an old theme? Don’t try to be too clever – be clear instead.

  1. https://writingcooperative.com/your-guide-to-twitter-pitch-events-in-2022-17bcffaf38f

This article shares guidelines around Twitter events including, writers can help other writers by retweeting and commenting on their pitches but you should never hit the like button on another writer’s pitch. Likes are reserved for agents and editors. Tips for writing a great pitch are given, such as avoiding generalisations, highlighting conflict, outlining the stakes, and using comparison titles. A handy list of pitch events planned for 2022 is also listed.

PODCASTS

  1. https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly90aGVhdXRob3JpbnNpZGV5b3UubGlic3luLmNvbS9yc3M/episode/OGJiYTkwMjU2YzIwYmRhNTMwM2UxNWU1YjkxNWYxNDY?hl=en-IE&ved=2ahUKEwjh37OouJn6AhWgR0EAHXgnBPQQjrkEegQIAxAI&ep=6

If you’re not sure what a “Twitter Pitch Contest” is all about, you need to listen to this episode of The Author Inside You. Guest Hanna Carmack explains how these contests work and why they are so great for writers ready to publish their manuscripts.

  1. https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly9hbmNob3IuZm0vcy81MWE0ZmRlOC9wb2RjYXN0L3Jzcw/episode/NTk2NDFlMGUtMWUyZC00N2ZmLTg3NTItNjA4NTg1NGZhYWFh?hl=en-IE&ved=2ahUKEwjh37OouJn6AhWgR0EAHXgnBPQQjrkEegQIAxAa&ep=6

In this episode of Automation & Authorship, guest author Kayla MacNeille discusses #PitMad (a quarterly pitching event on Twitter put on by @PitchWars) and the general writing community on Twitter.

  1. https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly9hcGkuc3Vic3RhY2suY29tL2ZlZWQvcG9kY2FzdC84Njc5NDUucnNz/episode/dGFnOnNvdW5kY2xvdWQsMjAxMDp0cmFja3MvNjIyMjE5Mzk4?hl=en-IE&ved=2ahUKEwjh37OouJn6AhWgR0EAHXgnBPQQjrkEegQIAxAL&ep=6

Kelly and JJ share all their tips and tricks for crafting pitches for Twitter Pitch Contests. How can you distil your book into 280 characters? They have got some ideas.

Search Twitter for examples using the different Twitter event hashtags. Check out your genre and see which ones have lots of likes and retweets. Learn from how these were crafted when crafting your own. I hope that this week’s column has been useful for you. Please get in touch if there are any topics you would like me to cover.

(c) Lucy O’Callaghan

Instagram: lucy.ocallaghan.31.

Facebook: @LucyCOCallaghan

Twitter: @LucyCOCallaghan

About the author

Writing since she was a child, Lucy penned her first story with her father called Arthur’s Arm, at the ripe old age of eight. She has been writing ever since. Inspired by her father’s love of the written word and her mother’s encouragement through a constant supply of wonderful stationary, she wrote short stories for her young children, which they subsequently illustrated.
A self-confessed people watcher, stories that happen to real people have always fascinated her and this motivated her move to writing contemporary women’s fiction. Her writing has been described as pacy, human, moving and very real.
Lucy has been part of a local writing group for over ten years and has taken creative writing classes with Paul McVeigh, Jamie O’Connell and Curtis Brown Creative. She truly found her tribe when she joined Writer’s Ink in May 2020. Experienced in beta reading and critiquing, she is currently editing and polishing her debut novel.
Follow her on Instagram: lucy.ocallaghan.31. Facebook and Twitter: @LucyCOCallaghan

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