Ah, how times change.
At one time, we were told as writers to have an Elevator Pitch ready for our books…a brief description of your book that could be expressed in a single elevator ride. At one point I was told that this should be around 200-250 words, although I don’t know that this is an exact science.
Not that it matters. Because now the Elevator Pitch has evolved (or, perhaps, devolved) into the Twitter Pitch.
I can’t help but marvel at some of the Twitter Pitches I see. Some are quite good. As a wordy author, I find it hard to express just about anything in 140 characters or less, much less a summation of one of my novels. Still, I know it can be done. I see it done every day and there is even still room to drop a link to the book’s Amazon page. These authors impress me.
Trying to draft an effective Twitter Pitch is like trying to write a perfect haiku. Every word, neigh, every letter needs to have a purpose.
Today, I wrote one for The Hollows that could probably be stronger. It reads: Her son being kidnapped was bad enough. But the place he is being taken makes it worse.
I plan to come up with at least 3 Twitter Pitches for each of my novels in the next few days and sprinkle them over Twitter sometime in the future. Writing these things is eerily reminiscent of the copywriting I was doing a few years ago where I had to come up with numerous headlines and sub-headlines for boring articles. But there is a certain art to crafting an effective Twitter pitch that is very much like successful copywriting. It’s actually sort of fun.
Here’s a try at one for both Everything Theory books: Gabe could maybe outlive his marred past if only his deranged father’s failed experiments would stop ruining his life.
Needs work but it’s a good start, I suppose. (Of course, if you’ve read the books, you know it’s impossible to sum it up in a single Twitter post).
Now let’s try it with some well known books.
Stephen King’s The Stand: “The flu. The devil. A dangerous trek across a destroyed landscape. M-O-O-N. That spells The Stand.”
Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea: “Even his obsession with Joe DiMaggio won’t stop him from catching that big ass fish.”
Cormac McCarthy’s The Road: “The most depressing, grim and hopeless road trip ever.”
Share your own Twitter Pitches in the comments.