Early Details On PitDark May 2023
Pitch Date: May 25th, 2023
Prizes: A book contract from a publisher; contracts vary between publishers. Generally royalties with the possibility of an advance.
Themes: Darker literature (horror, or other forms of fiction that are dark or are mixed genres.
Welcome to #PitDark, the only Twitter pitching contest for dark literature!
#PitDark is the first and only Twitter pitch event to highlight literature of a “darker” nature. Importantly, this is not limited to horror works; however, any pitched manuscript must contain an element of horror or darker writing. Examples of such categories include pure horror novels, dark fantasy, murder mysteries, psychological horror stories, non-fiction works about darker subjects, etc. MG, YA, NA, and adult age categories are welcome.
The next #PitDark will take place on May 25, 2023.
You can find the agents and publishers that participated in previous #PitDark events here.
Please follow the @PitDark_ Twitter account for up-to-date information about the event.
The contest will happen on Twitter under a common hashtag (#PitDark). During a 12-hour window on the chosen day, authors with completed manuscripts who are seeking representation or publication can tweet a pitch for their books (at most, once per hour).
Agents and publishers will make requests by marking pitches as a like on Twitter. If your tweet is liked, please follow the agent or publisher’s submission guidelines.
General Pitch Party Rules
- Pitch limit. Please do not pitch more than once an hour, per manuscript.
- Time-frame: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern. Please do not pitch before or after this twelve-hour period.
Please follow these guidelines to keep this event fair to everyone involved!
When to Pitch
This event happens biannually. The next #PitDark is scheduled for May 25, 2023. On pitch day, we will go from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern.
What to Pitch
Participants get one pitch per hour, per manuscript.
This contest is for completed, unpublished manuscripts. Complete means that it’s proofed, polished, and ready for submission. Unpublished means you haven’t self-published it online, on Amazon, or in print. For more information on genres, please see below.
Genre mashups, such as dark fantasy, are welcome, as long as you’re not just trying to pass off your book as something that doesn’t contain “darker” themes.
How To Pitch
Your pitch should contain four elements:
- First and foremost, the hashtag for the contest, #PitDark.
- An indication of the book’s age category.
- An indication of the book’s genre in existing terms. See below for hashtags. A genre hashtag is mandatory.
- A pitch for your book. Ideally, it should tell us character, desire, obstacle(s), and stakes
You should tweet your pitch no more than once per hour throughout the day. Make sure each tweet is slightly different, as tweeting identical text is a violation of Twitter’s guidelines.
Please use these hashtags to indicate the target age group for your book:
- #MG – Middle Grade
- #YA – Young adult
- #NA – New adult
- #A – Adult
Please use a hashtag to indicate the genre of your book. The following are example hashtags that may be relevant to your manuscript:
- #H – horror
- #PH – psychological horror
- #GH – gothic horror
- #CSH – cosmic horror
- #BH – body horror
- #CH – comedy horror
- #DC – dark comedy
- #DR – dark romance
- #SFH – science fiction horror
- #PNH – paranormal horror
- #ZH – zombie horror
- #MH – monster horror
- #GRH – graphic horror
- #MM – murder mystery
- #FA – fantasy
- #DF – dark fantasy
- #T – thriller
- #PT – psychological thriller
- #EF – epic or high fantasy
- #HF – historical fantasy
- #LF – literary fantasy
- #LH – literary horror
- #AH – alternate history
- #PN – paranormal
- #PR – paranormal romance
- #UF – urban fantasy
- #MR – magical realism
- #SF – science fiction
- #AF – apocalypse fiction
- #ML – military science fiction
- #PA – post-apocalyptic SF
- #CP – cyberpunk
- #SFT – sci-fi thriller
- #SH – superhero / superhuman
- #SO – space opera
- #DS – dystopian
- #SP – steampunk
- #TT – time travel
- #WW – weird west
- #SPEC – speculative fiction
- #NF – non-fiction
You are permitted to use two genre tags, as long as they’re compatible (e.g. #FA #DF), but there’s no pressing need to have more than one. For a description and some examples of these subgenres, see the Genre Subcategories post by Connor Goldsmith of Fuse Literary. Please let me know — by e-mail or Twitter — if I haven’t specified your subgenre!
Additionally, if the work you are pitching reflects a marginalized identity/background, please feel free to utilize an appropriate hashtag such as #OWN (to suggest #ownvoices), #POC, #LGBT, etc. For more information on this point, visit https://www.dvpit.com/rules-guidelines.
Here are some general guidelines to ensure fairness and respect during the contest.
- Pitch completed, unpublished manuscripts that represent your best work.
- Include the contest hashtag, #PitDark.
- Use appropriate hashtags for age category and genre/subgenre.
- Pitch your book once an hour to give everyone a chance to see it.
- Make sure that your tweets are not identical. Twitter will block multiple instances of the same tweet, so be sure to move the hashtags around or change a character each time.
- Follow submission guidelines. Scroll up in an agent or publisher’s tweets to see what they are, and be sure to follow them.
- Pitch more than once an hour, per manuscript. This ensures that no one spams the hashtag, and gives everyone a fair shake.
- Pitch directly to agents or publishers (unless invited to do so). In other words, don’t use @ at the beginning of your pitch.
- Use images, moodboards, or weird formatting to get attention. No ALL CAPS or multiple lines. No images. Please do not use moodboards — the feedback I’ve received from agents is that they, generally, do not like them for this event.
- Use the hashtag to self-promote. This is not the place to hock your e-book, editorial services, etc.
- Like other pitches unless you’re an agent or publisher. There’s nothing more disappointing than getting notification that your tweet was liked, only to find out it was just another author.
Who Is Participating?
See below for a list of a few of the participating agents and publishers. This is not an exhaustive list as some participating agents have asked to not be listed, and since #PitDark is a public event, many more agents and publishers are likely to join in on the day! Please be sure to research any agent or publisher that likes your pitch. There is no obligation to submit your work to anyone you don’t want to.
3 Seas Literary
- Stephanie Stevens, @LitAgent3seas
Annie Bomke Literary Agency
- Annie Bomke, @ABLiterary
Creative Media Agency, Inc.
- Megan Frayser, @megan_frayser
DeFiore & Company
- Tamara Kawar, @tetrametertalks
Dunham Literary, Inc.
- Jennie Dunham, @JennieDunhamLit
Folio Literary Management
- Katherine Odom-Tomchin, @odom_tomchin
The Friedrich Agency
- Lucy Carson, @LucyACarson
- Analieze Cervantes, @author_analieze
Howland Literary, LLC
- Erin Clyburn, erin_clyburn
Jane Rotrosen Agency
Janklow & Nesbit Associates
Liza Royce Agency
- Liza Fleissig, lizaroyceagency
- Annie Romano, @AnnieCRomano
Renaissance Literary & Talent
- Multiple Agents, @RLTAgency
Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency
- Jill Marr, @jilliganjonze
Suzy Evans Literary Agency.
- Suzy Evans, @TheHistoryChef
The Unter Agency
- Jen Nadol, @jennadol, @jennadol
Off Limits Press
- Multiple Editors, @OffLimitsPress
Quill & Crow Publishing House
- Multiple Editors, @QuillandCrow
- Multiple Editors, @pandamoonpub
Winding Road Stories
- Michael Dolan, @mikedolanny
Pitching Tips & Advice
The following are a few great articles for Twitter pitching advice:
- Dan Koboldt’s brief guide to Twitter pitching
- Shira Hoffman’s The Art of #TwitterPitching
- How to PitMad by Heather Burnell on Sub It Club
- How #PitMad Helped Me Get A Literary Agent and tips for the next one, by Diana Urban
Please contact me if you have any questions about the event.
Via: Jason Huebinger.
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Stuart Conover is a father, husband, published author, blogger, geek, entrepreneur, horror fanatic, and runs a few websites including Horror Tree!