Submission & Selling

Agent Andy Ross (Interview)

by John Robert Marlow
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Agent Andy Ross (Interview)
Interviewed by John Robert Marlow

ANDY ROSS is a literary agent and founder of the Andy Ross Agency, which specializes in narrative nonfiction, history, politics and current events, science, journalism, and cultural subjects. Before becoming an agent, Andy was owner and general manager of Berkeley landmark Cody’s Books from 1977- 2006. He was a board member and officer of the American Booksellers Association, past president of the Northern California Booksellers Association, and is author of the Ask the Agent blog.

JRM: Why did you become—and why do you remain—an agent? What got you started, and what keeps you going?

Andy Ross: Most agents come out of publishing. Usually editorial. This makes a lot of sense. They have experience in the decision to acquire books for publishers. They know the calculations that go into making the decision, and they usually know what general sorts of books publishers are looking for.

I came into this job from an entirely different background. I was a retailer for 35 years. For 30 years I owned and managed Cody’s Books in Berkeley. It was an extremely well known and highly regarded store that had a reputation for its unusual selection of titles and its commitment to books of literary and intellectual value. This gave me an unusual perspective. Read more…

The One-Minute Story: Crafting a Pitch Sheet for Your Book, Screenplay, or Other Tale (SDFW Part 5)

by John Robert Marlow
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The One-Minute Story: Crafting a Pitch Sheet for Your Book, Screenplay, or Other Tale
(Story Development For Writers, Part 5)
by John Robert Marlow

PITCHING AS COURTSHIP

We already know (from Part 2 of this series) that most commercial concepts can be conveyed in 10 seconds or less, via something called a logline. Now we’re going to look at expanding that micropitch into something positively extravagant: a one-minute pitch. (Okay, sometimes it’s a minute and a half.)

Logline Workshop: Jurassic Park (SDFW, Part 3)

by John Robert Marlow
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Logline Workshop: Jurassic Park
(Story Development For Writers, Part 3)
by John Robert Marlow

Let’s walk through the process from start to finish, working up a logline for a story that most people already know. Jurassic Park was a hugely successful novel that went on to become one of Hollywood’s biggest hits. Keeping that logline mantra in mind—Who, Goal, Obstacle (see Building the Perfect Logline for Your Book, Screenplay, or Other Story for more on this)—how do we build a logline for this story? Building the Perfect Logline for Your Book, Screenplay, or Other Story for more on this)—how do we build a logline for this story?”> Read more at Make Your Story A Movie .com…

Jumping The Gun

by John Robert Marlow
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Jumping The Gun: Suicide by Submission by John Robert Marlow

FORGIVENESS AND DAMNATION

When it comes to writing, most mistakes are—in and of themselves—forgivable. No professional is going to round-file your manuscript or screenplay because of a few isolated mistakes. Unless, of course, they’re Really Big Mistakes. This post is about one of those Really Big Mistakes…