Portsmouth Writers' Hub presents Meet the (literary) Dragons

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Menuhin Theatre, Central Library

Guildhall Walk

PO1 2DX

United Kingdom

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Refunds up to 7 days before event

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Portsmouth Writers' Hub in association with New Writing South presents Meet the Dragons.

Writers! Literary Agents & Editors are coming to Portsmouth to answer your questions, network and hear your book pitches.

The Literary Dragons are:

Sandra Sawicka, Literary Agent and Foreign Rights Manager at Marjacq, see: marjacq.com
Kate Barker is a literary agent, see: katebarker.net
Charlie Campbell is a literary agent at Kingsford Campbell, see: kingsfordcampbell.com
Sarah Savitt is an editor at the publisher Virago, see: virago.co.uk
Jamie Cowen is a literary agent at The Ampersand Agency, see: theampersandagency.co.uk

Anne Williams is a literary agent at KHLA, see: katehordern.co.uk

After a Q&A and networking, writers will be pitching live to The Dragons. If you are pitching please email tessa@newwritingsouth.com the title of your story, the genre (eg: Crime Fiction, women's fiction, sci-fi, Literary Fiction, YA...) and your name (or pseudonym if you write under a pseudonym) in advance of the event. Pitching starts from 6.30pm. Please also include in your email to Tessa any vital piece of information about your work that should be read out by the compare when you are introduced to the dragons and start your pitch.

The dragons will be arriving a litle after 6pm and mingling with the writers in the Menuhin Theatre. The pitching starts from 6.30pm. (If you arrive late, don't worry. If you have missed your slot, let Tessa or one of the compares (Tony and Matt) know.)

You will be pitching the first 10 lines of your book or the first paragraph, whichever makes the most sense. You don't need to learn this by heart, feel free to just read from the page. (Make sure that you print your work out relatively big so that you don't struggle to read it!)

As well as the first ten lines or paragraph of your book, you can also include your elevator pitch if you wish. The elevator pitch is a single sentence description of your plot. Some examples of elevator pitches:

'Twilight' is a teen romance between an ordinary American girl and a boy who is actually a vampire.

'The Da Vinci Code' is a mystery thriller where the protagonist has to unlock codes buried in ancient works of art as he hunts for the Holy Grail.

'Wolf Hall' is a historical epic revolving around Thomas Cromwell, the most important man in the court of King Henry VIII.

All genres welcome.

You will receive an immediate 'Yes, please submit your book to me' or 'no, this is not for me' from the agents/editors.

'Yes's you will then be invited to submit your manuscript to the agency via email. Please state in the cover letter than you had a 'yes' at the Hub's Meet the Dragons. You don't have to have finished your entire manuscript at this stage, you can always let the agent know how far you are in the email.

If you have received nos from all the panel of agents and editors, you will receive a free feedback on your chapter one from the Portsmouth Writers' Hub. This will be done anonymously by a member of the hub. There will be a sign up sheet on the night for those wishing to receive free feedback. Just put your contact email on there and we will get in touch with you.

Come meet some fantastic literary dragons looking to sign up new writers, bring your questions, support your writer friends and pitch your book ideas.

More about our Literary Dragons and what they are looking for:

SANDRA SAWICKA joined Marjacq in 2014. She is actively looking for new clients. She is particularly drawn to original voices and exotic settings – and this could be anything from a spanning space opera to historical Southern gothic to a literary novel set in a remote part of the world. She loves complex, morally ambiguous characters and has a weird soft-spot for university settings. Sandra represents authors from all over the world and believes that truly great stories are universal.

KATE BARKER has worked in publishing for nearly twenty years as an agent, commissioning editor and ghostwriter. She spent ten years at Penguin, where she was an Editorial Director for Viking, acquiring fiction and non-fiction. She has also worked for Orion, for Curtis Brown, for digital publisher Bookouture and for a speakers bureau. She works with a wide range of specialist agencies for the sale of rights around the world. Kate set up her own agency in 2016 and is actively building her list across fiction and non-fiction.

CHARLIE CAMPBELL has been a literary agent for over a decade, joining Ed Victor Ltd in 2005. He handled film, TV and serial rights for the agency’s clients, as well as helping launch the speakers bureau and digital publishing arm. He is interested in both fiction and non-fiction, with a particular focus on literary novels, thrillers and books that tackle big or quirky subjects in an accessible way. Before agenting, he spent three years at Literary Review, where he became Deputy Editor and ran the Bad Sex in Fiction Award. His book Scapegoat: A History of Blaming Other People was published by Duckworth in the UK and Overlook in the US, as well as in Russia, Thailand and Turkey. In 2012, he and a group of writers revived the Authors XI, a literary cricket team that used to star PG Wodehouse and Arthur Conan Doyle. Under his captaincy the Authors have toured India and Sri Lanka and, in 2013, they defeated the national side of Japan. In the same year, their book, The Authors XI: A Season of English Cricket from Hackney to Hambledon, was published by Bloomsbury. It was shortlisted for the Cricket Society and MCC Book of the Year award. Charlie has just published Herding Cats: The Art of Amateur Captaincy about his experiences captaining the Authors side.

SARAH SAVITT is an Editor at the Publisher Virago and previously worked at Headline, Faber and David Godwin Associates. She has published authors including Louise Doughty, Kate Hamer, Sara Pascoe, Karen Rose, Sarah Schmidt, Lauren Graham and Hanif Kureishi. She has taught for Arvon, Faber Academy and Guardian Masterclasses.

JAMIE COWEN has worked in publishing for 14 years. Before joining Ampersand in 2013 he was a commissioning editor at HarperCollins, and prior to that he worked in legal and contracts departments at HC and the Hachette Group. Jamie is looking for writers of high-end genre fiction, including crime, thrillers, SF, fantasy and horror. His taste within these areas is broad, but he is specifically on the lookout for science fiction/thriller crossovers. Jamie is also looking for sport-related non-fiction, and commercial narrative non-fiction, and is keen to see submissions of all kinds from BAME and LGBTQ writers. Jamie’s clients at Ampersand include Mark A. Latham (The Lazarus Gate , The Iscariot Sanction and The Legion Prophecy; Titan, 2015, ‘16 and ‘17), Adrian Selby (Snakewood; Orbit, 2016), Mark Hill (Two O’Clock Boy; Sphere, 2016), Nate Crowley (100 Best Video Games and The Death and Life of Schneider Wrack; Solaris, 2017) and Joel Bird (The Book of Shed; Bonnier, 2017).

ANNE WILLIAMS worked for over fifteen years as a commissioning editor, first at Michael Joseph, then for thirteen years at Headline during which time she was Co-Publisher of the Review imprint and Publisher of the main Headline imprint. Anne commissioned and edited a number of Headline’s major commercial fiction authors, including the Sunday Times No. 1 bestsellers Sheila O’Flanagan and Lyn Andrews, top 10 bestseller Faye Kellerman and prize-winning crime writers Barbara Nadel, Manda Scott and Caroline Graham (on whose books the tv series Midsomer Murders was based). She joined the Kate Hordern Literary Agency in 2009 and is based in Central London. What Anne is looking for: I am keen to find well-written, engrossing fiction for which I feel I can find a market. I want a plot that will keep me engaged, characters I care about and a world that is intriguing or attractive enough for me to want to spend time in. Specifically, I am interested in women's fiction, be it contemporary or set further into the past. I am also passionate about history and historical fiction and am a fan of crime and thrillers, an area of the KHLA list I am keen to build. Though my background is largely in fiction publishing, I am also on the look out for 'new nature writing', a personal enthusiasm. I am not looking for children's, YA fiction, SF or Fantasy. Apart from Nature Writing, I do not usually work on non fiction projects.

Practical information: The closest station to our venue is Portsmouth & Southsea Station. There is also parking near the venue. There should be three hour free parking slots round the back of the library. Alternatively, the cheapest parking is at the station, the 'off peak all night fee' is £2. Collect your parking ticket from from the machines in the station.



Date and Time

Location

Menuhin Theatre, Central Library

Guildhall Walk

PO1 2DX

United Kingdom

View Map

Refund Policy

Refunds up to 7 days before event

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