Breathe. Write. Breathe. - 18 Energizing practices to spark your writing and free your voice by Lisa Tener

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18 Energizing Practices to Spark Your Writing & Free Your Voice

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Your Book Pitch: What the Experts Think

Lisa Tener book pitch contest
Your Book Writing Coach Lisa Tener

What would it be like to look at your own book pitch with the eyes of a professional in the field—an agent, editor or publicist?

By reviewing the pitches—and our expert comments—from the “Pitch Your Book to Life” contest, you can:

1. Learn to write a compelling book pitch.

2. Get a sense of what might be missing from your book pitch

3. Receive the stimulation to come up with new ideas for your book.

On April 5th through April 19th (2012), we hosted the “Pitch Your Book Life” contest. Participants had the chance to submit a 3-5 sentence “elevator pitch” about their book concept to be reviewed by Literary Agent Michael Larsen, Book Publicity Expert Rusty Shelton, and myself.

Experts’ Feedback on Book Pitches

not a judge in pitch your book to life writing contest
This fellow was just too inexperienced to judge the entries, though he did share his opinions loud and clear.

Read my feedback on all contest entries for tips that might help you take your book concept to pitch to the next level, or–if you haven’t written a pitch—to write a compelling one:

Read Part 1.

Read Part 2.

Read Part 3.

Read Part 4.

Read the top 10 finalists entries.

The first blog entry of the contest explains how the contest worked. Congratulations to the winner, Kate Forest, and runner up, Nora Hall! Read more information about the judges’ decision.


Jamie Levitt
Jamie Levitt spearheaded the contest!

A BIG, BIG thank you to Jamie Levitt, who created the contest and was the genius and hard work behind it, to Rachel Horwitz for the initial idea, to Geri Lafferty for her support and to our judges Michael Larsen and Rusty Shelton. And, of course, a big thank you to all our wonderful contestants. Good luck with your books.

Several contestants mentioned that the contest helped them “declare” their book and move forward. Many revised their pitches or fine tuned their book ideas. Congratulations for taking the step and making the most of this opportunity

We have never run a contest like this before and would love to get your feedback. You can send us feedback by commenting below or here.





Were you a finalist or winner? Use one of the above badges to share your accomplishments and have the badge link back to this blog post!

Lisa Tener

Lisa Tener is an award-winning book writing coach who assists writers in all aspects of the writing process—from writing a book proposal and getting published to finding one’s creative voice. Her clients have appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, CBS Early Show, The Montel Williams Show, CNN, Fox News, New Morning and much more. They blog on sites like The Huffington Post, Psychology Today and WebMD.

Reader Interactions


  1. Anita A. Caruso says

    It was a wonderful experience for me. I had a good feedback. My book is finished and has been edited. I’m now looking for an agent /publisher or maybe to self publish. haven’t made up my mind. My only negative was that you were supposed to do your pitch in 3-5 lines. I noticed that some seem to be quite long and were still accepted. If I had known I would have had a different pitch.

  2. Lisa Tener says

    Congratulations, Anita. Let me know when your book is published and we’ll put a link and announcement in my newsletter.
    I apologize about the length issue, Anita,
    At first we tried to have people shorten and then we found they were all quite long. I appreciate the feedback and we will be consistent (but perhaps allow for the slightly longer pitch) when we do this again!

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