Thomas Jefferson said, “I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.”
Rarely does luck fall into our laps; it’s up to you to make things happen. You obviously believe this or you wouldn’t be here at Pitch University working to perfect your pitch.
I have always believed in going for what I want, and that means being memorable. Anytime I take a writing course I read up on the instructor. OK and to be clear, this does not count as stalking. How can you take from what any instructor gives you, if you do not know where they are coming from?
First of all, this was one of the best workshops that I’ve taken. If you haven’t attended one of his workshops or bought his book, “Warrior Writer” you really should. I read up on Bob’s blog and followed him on Twitter. It didn’t take long to see that we did have something in common—dogs.
Second and to be clear, I didn’t go into a workshop with a publisher planning to pitch a non-fiction book on dogs. My plan was to learn how to improve my young adult fantasy and to get in one conversation with Bob about my dog so that way he would remember me when I sent a follow up email to his critiques of my YA query letter.
Instead, when I mentioned my dog, I met unexpected excitement and learned about the pet books that his publishing company, Who Dares Wins, was publishing.
In that moment I saw an opportunity. My dog, Oscar, has epilepsy. I love my dog, and I’m proud I’ve been able to care for him and give him the life he deserves. All special needs dogs need love and care. I’ve always wanted to do something to help special needs dogs, and this was my chance.
I pitched Bob a book on caring for your special needs dog, and he said, “Yes!”
I took a chance in the monent, got a yet, and made plans to publish a book on special needs dogs with Who Dares Wins Publishing. I had to slow down some on my young adult fantasy, but I was doing something that I really believed in.
I asked Bob Mayer about his thoughts on pitching and luck.
“I think the key is to take a chance.
90% of those who get asked by an agent to send in their material after pitching never even do so. That's an astounding number of people who reject themselves because they're afraid of having someone else reject them.
All someone can do is say no. You never really know what someone is looking for. You never know what opportunities are out there. A lot of Who Dares Wins Publishing came out of informal discussions and random encounters.
People think it's luck, but luck goes to those who try.”
I’m sure some people do experience luck. However, if you look at what they’ve done, I’m surethey worked hard, tried, and put themselves in the right position to succeed.
I went to a writers workshop and came out with plans for a book.
A percentage of the profits from “Caring for Your Special Needs Dog” will go to The Texas A&M Foundation to the benefit of the Neurology Section, Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinarian Medicine.
Sometimes you can find yourself pitching a book or an idea without even knowing. Pitching isn’t scary. Many times it can be a simple, casual conversation. Take chances. Look for opportunities. Don’t reject yourself from success.
Natalie C. Markey is a graduate from Baylor University with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism/PR and Speech Communications. She has worked with organizations such as Rubenstein Public Relations in New York City and CBS Television.
Markey is a nine-year seasoned freelance journalist. She writes for several local and National publications including a regular column on Examiner.com, Special Needs Dog Care Examiner. After a professional career in PR and Communications she now writes non-fiction and fiction full time from a forest in Arkansas. She lives with her supportive husband, daughter, and, of course, Oscar.