Start Your Novel Planning with the Elevator Pitch
An elevator pitch is another name for book blurb. You see it on the back of books and on the online book record, usually under “Book Description” or “Overview.”
I recommend you start with your elevator pitch because it’s an activity you can do in 5-20 minutes and it’s a good way to get your brain in gear for writing your novel.
Don’t worry about your elevator pitch being perfect. You can revise it once you’re done with all your novel planning or when you’re done writing your novel after NaNoWriMo.
Start here: Take note of your genre. This will give you a general idea of your story ending and other reader expectations.
Elevator Pitch Formula
Draft these 5 items in note or list format. Then put them together it out in a 2-4 sentence paragraph. If you don’t know what your story is yet, use this exercise to experiment with an idea. If you don’t like what you generate, do the exercise multiple times until you come up with an idea you do like.
- Situation: (Also called the Initial Action or Premise, this is the beginning of the plot.)
- Main Character: (Self-explanatory)
- Primary Objective: (At the start of the story, what does your main character want?)
- Antagonist Or Opponent: (Also know as the Central Conflict. Who or what is keeping your main characters from getting what they want? What is the opposing force?)
- Disaster That Could Happen: (What’s the worst that could happen, and/or what does your character want next? Often phrased as a question.)
1. Abandoned on his relatives’ doorstep as an infant,
2. Harry Potter
3. longs to understand where he came from and why he feels different.
4. He discovers that he is a wizard and that his parents were killed by Voldemort, a powerful and evil wizard,
5. who has been hunting for Harry, to kill him.
In Paragraph Format
Abandoned on his relatives’ doorstep as an infant, Harry Potter longs to understand where he came from and why he feels different. He discovers that he is a wizard and that his parents were killed by Voldemort, a powerful and evil wizard, who has been hunting for Harry, to kill him.
A reclusive computer programmer, Nathan Yirmorshy, pounds out ones and zeros in the quiet of his home while his landlord secretly watches from behind a two-way mirror. When an intercepted note connects the landlord to a secret society, and a detective ends up dead, Nathan must abandon his home and everything familiar to him, open his heart to a tarot reader he has never met, and trust her with his life – just as the ancient scriptures have foretold. (The Torah Codes by bestselling author, Ezra Barany)
Now your turn! Post yours in the comments to share!
Would you like hands-on support to plan and write your novel?
If you’d like hands-on support to plan your novel for Nanowrimo with your peers and with experienced instructors — Beth and Ezra Barany, then join us for our next course starting October 1st: 30-Day Writing Challenge to Plan Your Novel. Sign up for the wait list here.
You can join the home study course at any time here.
NEW! PLAN YOUR NOVEL LIKE A PRO
You can also check out our newest book, Plan Your Novel Like A Pro, here!
This book will help you get excited to plan your novel. The tools shared here are designed to spark your muse and give you confidence when you sit down to write your story. Plan Your Novel Like A Pro: And Have Fun Doing It! is for organic writers and pansters who want a roadmap to follow, so that they can let their creativity loose.
“Beth’s book is like plotting for pantsers!”—Tess Rider, Science Fantasy Romance Author
ABOUT BETH & EZRA BARANY
Beth Barany, an award-winning novelist and certified Creativity Coach for Writers, runs Barany Consulting, a coaching and consulting firm dedicated to helping novelists write, publish, and market their books. She’s the author of the award-winning young adult fantasy series, Henrietta The Dragon Slayer, and the paranormal sweet romance collection, Touchstone Series. She’s currently working on a science fiction mystery series.
Ezra Barany, an award-winning novelist and the bestselling author of The Torah Codes series, is also a teacher and mentor.
Together they help authors get their books out into the world.