By Meredith Deliso
Book ideas are like belly buttons — everyone has one. But not everyone knows how to make a solid book pitch.
Enter Pitchapalooza, the “American Idol” of books that is coming to Greenlight Bookstore in Fort Greene tomorrow. Then, author hopefuls can pitch to a panel of publishing experts, where they’ll get feedback.
The good ones will get more.
“In the real world of publishing, for an unknown writer, you’re lucky to get a minute in front of a great agent or publisher,” said David Henry Sterry, who wrote “The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published” with his wife, Arielle Eckstut, and has brought Pitchapalooza to over 20 cities since starting it last fall.
No matter the city, the game is the same: “contestants” are randomly picked out of a hat and then have one minute to do their pitch, which then gets critiqued by the panel including Sterry and Eckstut — is there too much plot? Too little? Not enough characterization? Marketplace potential? The person with the most promising pitch gets introduced to an agent.
Kurt Christenson will be among the Pitchapalooza hopefuls trying for his shot at literary gold. The Clinton Hill-based writer hopes to pitch his book, “Tower of Brahma, a “part pulpy adventure, part Beat Poet novel” about his journey from late 20s suburban office worker to 30-something writer in New York City.
“My work is often too ethereal and poetic to be considered by most publishers, so I’m looking for one that might be more along my lines,” said Christenson.
Greenlight owner Jessica Stockton Bagnulo had people like Christenson in mind when she decided to bring in Pitchapalooza.
“Part of our mission as a bookstore is to be a community resource, and a place where people can come together over books; offering a fun way for authors to get connected to potential publishers and readers seemed like a perfect fit for us,” she said. “And it’s always exciting to host a contest!”
Pitchapalooza at Greenlight Bookstore [86 Fulton St. between S. Elliott Place and S. Portland Avenue in Fort Greene, (718) 246-0200], March 30 at 7:30 pm. For info, visit www.greenlightbookstore.com.