New York Pitch Conference Reviews

Independent interviews, commentary, and reviews concerning the NYC Pitch and Shop Conference.
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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews by Successful Writers and Authors

#26 Post by WritersBlock » 28 Jun 2019, 03:18

We went to the conference excited about the idea of pitching our book to editors. But we realized the much more beneficial aspect was the ability to see what our pitch, and therefore book, was lacking. After reworking everything, we have a story that not only generated editor interest, but also one about which we are confident and passionate.

We will forever be grateful to the New York Pitch Conference for making us pump a lot of awesome into our book.

Bill & Karen Burton

MORE NEW YORK PITCH REVIEWS AT viewtopic.php?f=41&p=34900


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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews by Successful Writers, Attendees, and Authors

#27 Post by LUKEC7BLANCHFORD » 29 Jun 2019, 08:31

The pitch workshops with Gina were exceptional. My initial pitch strived to present visionary aspects and theme, and then Gina guided me to drive toward the bones of how the underlying narrative worked. Also, she encouraged me to bring out memoir aspects of the narrative, and this gives me a lot of runway to expand the book. So, while I thought my book was done and complete, the pitch method helped me to tune into where an audience response was, and also, new transformative possibilities for bringing in additional materials. I am writing extensively as we speak, lots of new ideas to enrich the book for a more commercial and larger audience. :idea:

Also, it was wonderful to hear everyone else's pitches, just to hear the diversity of story, and to have a sounding board. Everyone was very helpful, supportive, optimistic, and clearly talented, with a lot of promise to their ventures. I am privileged to have been privy to their stories.

Hearing the feedback of the editors was certainly humbling, but essential. I love this pitch method for starting new projects, and it gives me an idea how to vet an approach for a follow-up book.

Thank you Gina, Michael, Paula, the editors, and thank you all my workshop mates.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#28 Post by Somberwoman » 22 Oct 2019, 00:27

The New York Pitch was quite simply the best writer conference I've ever attended based on who I met, the better novel I created, and the knowledge I gained.

SW :|


My comment above was based on the June conference, but I heard from staff that this last one was even better. Faculty confirmed a project that was so high-concept it got signed the very same day by a renowned six-figure-getting film/tv agent named Adam Chromy -
Somber Woman

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#29 Post by andrewalexanderE9 » 17 Dec 2019, 22:36

The New York Pitch Conference clarified what our stories were about. Plotting improves, voice improves, and confidence grows as constructive feedback provides permanent building blocks for the novel. NY Pitch is the “big time,” and if you are serious, don’t pitch to anyone before attending.

The faculty dedicate themselves to the craft and the profession of writing. The publishing editors and agents are smart and hungry for new work.


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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#30 Post by SheilaEnglishE9 » 18 Dec 2019, 00:02

You have to go in with an open mind and some flexibility. Work hard. Listen harder. This experience wasn't easy. It was, however, effective. I have attended many conferences, but nothing as useful as this one. So many of the people in my group were asked by editors and agents for pages or their manuscript. I was especially excited to be offered a contract on the spot. It was the final day of pitching and I hadn't been asked for anything up until that moment. But, I didn't give up. I didn't give in to the disappointment of not being asked for pages. I worked with Michael Neff to fine-tune my pitch and identify what is really commercially viable and it paid off big time!
Thank you to Michael and his team. I came home with a contract!

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#31 Post by RLmacallister » 18 Dec 2019, 23:33

I haven't posted in a century, but the incredible success of the conference these past several years wasn't always the case. A few chaps and ladies were blessed by the divine with publishing contracts, yes, but like the primordial Earth, a dark age full of meteors and volcanic activity once ruled.

Ahh, yes, I recall it well. There was the disturbed fellow who butted his noggin into the elevator door to relieve his frustration at no one wanting his novel. Then we had the vampire Goth creature who chased Neff into the bathroom and threatened a couple of editors. What else? I'll think on it.
I Love Opera!

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#32 Post by ACTONPIERCEE9 » 19 Dec 2019, 19:02

I got priceless information about what is commercial and if there is a market for my book. This probably saved me four years of my life.
Acton Pierce (future author ;)

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#33 Post by GLORIABACHMANNE9 » 20 Dec 2019, 05:48

Michael and his great team took me from adolescence in the writing world to adulthood.
I had the pleasure of being with Paula and her group the entire time. By the end of the first day it was like being with family.
The atmosphere was positive, constructive and supportive.

I walked in with a disarray of writing pieces and they were able to help me put them together to complete a cohesive writing picture.

If Michael had a waiting list for his next conference, my name would already be on it.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#34 Post by Leekaplan » 02 Jan 2020, 20:11

RLmacallister wrote:
18 Dec 2019, 23:33
There was the disturbed fellow who butted his noggin into the elevator door to relieve his frustration at no one wanting his novel. Then we had the vampire Goth creature who chased Neff into the bathroom and threatened a couple of editors. What else? I'll think on it.
I was in the group with Rosemary DiBattista and Loretta Marion. They both were fitted for their brass rings right on the spot. I heard they recently had an alum reunion in NYC with the pitch faculty. Wish I could have been there.

As for crazies, I saw the neurosurgeon who actually walked in on other writer's pitch sessions and demanded an audience with the editor. Everyone told her she didn't have a plot but she wouldn't listen. Too narcissistic!

Regardless, I had a great time at the New York Pitch Conference and learned so much my poor noggin ached for days. :shock: :)

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#35 Post by E9LawrenceBurgio » 07 Jan 2020, 20:00

To Michael and Audrey,

Thank you so much for the wonderful experience at the Algonkian Writers December Conference The New York Pitch Conference! Having just recently attended a different writers conference a month prior to The NY Pitch Conference, I was well prepared to receive critical feedback. What I was not expecting was the tremendous amount of work and effort put forth by the Algonkian team and the excellent instruction.

This wasn’t merely reviewing writers book pitches and offering constructive criticism, it was a four-day workshop that identified what a great pitch looks like, and how a great novel is created by a great pitch. I’m sure that most of the attendees, including myself, have struggled with the pitch and query format and its limitations, always wanting to include more than is needed. The conference was an eye-opener on how critical it is to craft a pitch that captures the agents and editors attention, and how failing to do so can send years of hard work on a manuscript into the trash can.

While I cannot express the thanks for all the knowledge I gained from the experience in this letter, I can assure you that I will be returning to the conference in the future! Not only was the education a great experience, but to interact so many aspiring writers and be surrounded by such enthusiasm was fantastic!

Keep Writing!
Very Best Regards
Lawrence Burgio

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#36 Post by WritersBlock » 11 Jan 2020, 01:15

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews - Four More Reviews

#37 Post by WritersBlock » 20 Nov 2020, 00:18

From NY Pitch Comments ... omment.htm :idea:

The insights and learnings from the Algonkian NYC Pitch conference that I attended were instrumental in helping me find a top literary agent (Red Ink) and resulted in the publication of the very book that I arrived at the conference with. This book, now titled VICTIMS FOR SALE, was published and released worldwide by HarperCollins in 2018 and has recently been long-listed for the Bombay Film Festival awards.

- Nish Amarnath

Hi Susan. I thought I'd check in and let you know the latest. I have signed with agent Julie Gwinn of the Seymour Agency. She was actually one of the first agents I queried last year after the conference but things didn't come to fruition until just the last month... For numerous reasons and numerous times, I have appreciated attending the Pitch conferencer. I continue to be thankful to have attended the conference and for you as our instructor.

- Rebecca Fujikawa

My debut novel TELL ME LIES will be published by Simon & Schuster (Atria Books) on June 12, 2018. The NY Pitch really helped me refine the selling details of my pitch, market position the story with the right genre and comps while also giving me needed query leverage (I had some MS requests from editors/agents I met at the conference) when querying agents at several top agencies, incluing Janklow & Nesbit, who later provided me with great representation.

- Carola Lovering

The weekend I spent at this conference was transformational for me, and one of the best experiences of my life. It challenged my thinking, improved my craft, and helped me as a writer. Best of all, it made me feel like a writer for the first time in my life, and introduced me to a community of fellow writers with whom I am still friends today. If you ever had the desire to write professionally, and if you're willing to hear hard truths and do some serious work, I highly recommend it.

- Ben Keller


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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#38 Post by JENNIFERLOCKEP6 » 15 Dec 2020, 06:15

I attended the December 2020 New York Pitch Conference online, and it was an amazing experience. The workshop leaders, as promised, were straightforward and upfront with our pitch reviews, and by default our novel plot lines. Their assessments and questions each day always provided insightful ways of improving how to verbally describe our novels, and how best to prepare for the next pitch. Each step towards refining our pitches and preparing for the next agent or editor improved my ability to reflect on and edit the most important aspects of my manuscript. Every person that we pitched took the time to provide feedback in helpful and polite ways, and I had my manuscript requested twice as a result of the process, which was very rewarding. After each pitch our workshop leaders would review the feedback and provide guidance on interpretation and pitch adjustments.

It was a lot of fun to get to know a great group of fellow writers all at similar stages in their careers. The intensive process of being present during each of the other attendee’s project discussions as well as your own provides a deeper level of knowledge and understanding than it would have as a solo event.

:!: By the end, my pitch and as a result my novel were polished into competitive shape. In addition, I made significant forward progress on the path to publication, have a much better grasp of what the industry is looking for, and have a clear idea of what my next steps need to be. I highly recommend attending if you want to publish through any of the major publishing houses.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#39 Post by SamNahins93 » 15 Dec 2020, 19:49

I very much enjoyed my time during this conference. Michael and Audrey worked their tails off to make sure that our pitches were in top shape before we came face to face with the editors and agents. I learned a lot about where the market is today and what I have to do in order to become successful. The conference was ran quite smoothly even when taking in consideration of covid and the multiple time zones people were calling in from. I enjoyed meeting fellow writers and learning about their stories. I would absolutely attend this conference again.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#40 Post by JerryP6Mollenhauer » 15 Dec 2020, 21:05

The December 2020 New York Pitch Conference was empowering. In the group, there were a number of neat writers with good work under their belts, no one ups-man-ship, no snarkies, just plain good and very intelligent people with a common purpose. I had never talked to an agent or publisher before. But they exhibit all the attributes that qualify them as direct, caring, and compassionate, although they are to the point because they have a lot of people to work with within a very short time. But we learned the ropes, how to compose a pitch and give that pitch without choking up!

Kudos to Michael and Audrey who were the mod/admins in the group I was in, and helped polish our pitches, as well to Paula and all the agents and editors who gave us their time and trade! I was somewhat confident of my writing, but now I have insight into marketing, and can go forward to move my work!


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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#41 Post by TiffanyR6Washington » 16 Dec 2020, 01:23

I am in awe! I got a chance to attend the December New York Pitch Conference, which was my first writer's conference. I learned a lot about the business of the writing world and how to write and pitch my novels. I also got a chance to meet an amazing group of people.

Phenomenal! What a great group of professionals.

It was exciting and nerve racking at the same time, to be able to meet some of the best in the business and pitch my novel. Being asked just to see my work was exciting and gives me hope for the future as a creator.

It was really great to meet the other writers and learn about their projects. I am rooting for everyone's success.

I am fortunate to have found this workshop! I wish we could have met sooner.

Thanks so much for all you do.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#42 Post by MaureenMeeganP6 » 16 Dec 2020, 04:01

I attended The New York Pitch Conference in December 2020 and because of Covid, the conference was via Zoom. The conference exceeded my expectations. The conference leader and associate went above and beyond in their creative generosity, willingness to be available at ungodly early hours to help with reworking the pitch, developing the novel, and sharing professional insights as to what works and doesn’t work in the pitch. Being able to listen to other author's pitches, how their pitches got reworked, and listening to them pitch to agents was part of the education.

For my specific genre, I had the opportunity to pitch six times, each time learning how my pitch was or wasn’t of interest to the agent. I came away from the conference with a better understanding of the publishing world, a sharper picture of what will potentially make a novel commercial, and a submission request. If you are interested in selling your manuscript, I highly recommend attending the New York Pitch Conference.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#43 Post by NorahVawterR6 » 16 Dec 2020, 05:29

The New York Pitch exceeded my expectations. I have an MFA, and while I went to a great program and came out of it a much better writer, the MFA did not prepare me for the world of commercial publishing. I've always thought that I was terrible at talking about my book, and that pitching a project was this mysterious thing that I didn't get. Going to this conference was a big turning point for me. My workshop leader Paula Munier helped me and the rest of my group write and revise our pitches. If you put the work in, it gets better every day of the conference, because you continue to get feedback from your workshop leader AND the agents and editors you pitch to also offer advice to make the pitch better.

:oops: At first when Paula pointed out potential issues with the book itself, I felt discouraged. But Paula wasn't telling me to give up, she provided me with new tools to get the book into tip-top shape so that when an agent or editor saw the pages, they would sing. So it ended up overall being a really empowering experience. I've never done another pitch conference, but having heard how these usually go down, from friends, I can see how this was a far superior experience. I felt truly prepared to pitch, and it was also a very supportive environment. The agents and editors were genuinely kind, interested in hearing stories, and had helpful feedback (whether or not they were interested in the project).

I got two requests for partial manuscripts, so that was exciting. But I'm going to follow Paula and Michael Neff's advice to all of us and revise my manuscript before sending it out. Like a lot of things, the more you put into NY Pitch, the more you get out of it.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#44 Post by P6HassanRiaz » 16 Dec 2020, 20:06

An excellent conference. Michael was informative, organized, and kept the conference moving. It focused on the essential parts of a novel--plot characters setting. I recommend the conference for those committing themselves to a commercial novel. All of the attendees in our group were committed writers and it made for a good group. Even over Zoom, I got a good sense of community.

Well worth it.

I'll be back with my next novel/pitch.


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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#45 Post by EliseHartKipnessP6 » 17 Dec 2020, 00:47

I attended the December 2020 NYC Pitch. What an exceptional writing conference! I really liked the structure of the conference; it was instructive to hear what prominent agents and publishers had to say about all of our pitches. I loved that we received advice, were able to incorporate the advice and then get further feedback. It really helped us build on our work and also kept us from over-correcting. By the end of the conference, I felt I had a really strong product.

Our leader, Paula Munier, was absolutely amazing! She was informative, encouraging and kind, all at the same time. I recommend this conference to anyone serious about taking their work and pitch to the next level. I’m looking forward to trying other Algonkian programs.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#46 Post by JosieSchneiderR6 » 18 Dec 2020, 19:04

Attending the Algonkian New York Pitch Conference is like falling into the industry inside track. So valuable. Paula Munier, our moderator/leader, has a rapid-fire delivery packed with essential facts. I believe I got two year's worth of info jammed into four days.
If you're serious, attend this conference.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#47 Post by KennyReffP6 » 18 Dec 2020, 21:19

This was my fourth writers' conference, and I have to say, hands down, the best.

While other conferences fill the day with seminars (which can be useful) and the opportunity for a quick pitch slam, the New York Pitch Conference is unique in how it's structured on a workshop principle. Over four days our accomplished agent/instructor, Paula Munier, gave valuable feedback and guidance on all of our queries. The process was iterative. On the first day, we pitched her with our existing queries and got critiqued. We then revised that night and did it again on the second day. Same for days three and four. By the end of the conference, my query was transformed, certainly for the better. And I also gained valuable knowledge about the publishing industry.

We also had the opportunity to pitch four agents and acquisition editors, and if your work was in their wheelhouse and good enough, you were asked to send a sample for consideration. They also spent a few minutes giving you feedback, which is quite valuable coming from people who acquire novels for a living.

The founder, Michael Neff, is a warehouse of knowledge, and his required readings were really spot on. In addition, because they screen the applicants, our classmates were roundly professional. This kept the discourse at a similar level. Overall, this was time and money well spent and I highly recommend it!

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#48 Post by AjP6Kleinman » 21 Dec 2020, 04:43

:!: Such a worthwhile experience. One that exceeded my expectations in every way.

From our fearless leader, Paula Munier, who devoted herself to making sure each of us had the best pitch possible, to the visiting agents and editors that Michael conjured up, one of whom was juggling a newborn and still managed to offer incisive advice to every participant, this was an opportunity to learn, to improve, to connect, and to remind yourself why you became a writer in the first place.

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#49 Post by PATRICIAP6DALLABETTA » 21 Dec 2020, 22:40

I attended the December NY Pitch and am so grateful that I did. Presenting my written pitch to well-respected agents and editors--as well as to the talented writers in my group--was a bit scary, but nothing ventured, nothing gained, and I gained so much. I learned the specific structure of an effective pitch, how the publishing process works, and most importantly, what particular aspects I need to address in my own manuscript in order to make it marketable. With her years of experience in the publishing industry, and being a successful author herself, Paula Munier is the ideal coach. Her no-nonsense and yet encouraging approach allowed me to see what I needed to change without losing heart. She was willing to read multiple revisions of my pitch, and from what I could tell, went above and beyond for every participant in the class. Thank you, Paula!

I can honestly say that this conference is far superior to any that I have attended in the past. I came away with two requests for partial manuscripts, and I am excited to follow up with those when my novel is ready. Thank you so much, Michael Neff, for creating and organizing this unique and much-needed writing conference!

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Re: New York Pitch Conference Reviews

#50 Post by JohnC7Strand » 23 Dec 2020, 22:12

An enlightening, intensive four days guaranteed to give you the knowledge and skills necessary to obtain a publishing contract. Each writer who attends receives an informed look into the publishing market and leaves either with a request for a manuscript review by a major publishing house (up to four requests is not uncommon), an agency contract for representation, or a comprehensive list of changes that need to be made to their novel in order to land a contract. :!:
After just the first day, writers learn what they need to alter in their pitch and novel, in order to compete. Experts, like the conference organizer (Michael Neff), heads of major literary agencies and editors from leading New York publishing houses give direct feedback about content, length, titles and characters. Feedback can be quite critical in nature. This conference is not for those who believe they are already masters of the publishing market. Writers should be prepared to adapt their work and not take any critique personally.
Small groups, organized based on genre, help each individual to focus on what readers (and publishers) expect. Listening not just to feedback specific to your work, but the feedback others receive is, invaluable. This group process helps writers understand what not to do. After initial feedback is given and the writer reworks his pitch into a sellable two-hundred words. Only after it is flawless does he meet with the gateway editors of four New York publishing houses (the big boys, like Random House, Viking, Tor, etc…) By the time the writer meets with them, he is prepared because of the guided, rigorous preparation in days prior. This is very different from other conferences, which typically offer no intensive working sessions with critical and comprehensive feedback. New York Pitch ensures that you really are prepared and the best of what you have to offer (or will have to offer) shines through.

Point of Emphasis: By the end, each individual will either have a request for a review of their manuscript by a major publishing house, or know exactly how to change it, so they can get over that first hurdle to publication.

Personal note: I received four requests for my manuscript. (It is now under review at all four publishing houses.) Of the twenty others who attended with me, one other received four and at least 75% received at least one. Of the five who did not receive a request for review, one landed a lucrative contract with an agent to speed her characters right to the television market.

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