Sep. 2020 | Productivity

6 Lessons Learned From My First PitMad

What if you could get immediate feedback on your novel? All you have to do is whittle your entire novel down into 280 characters. Welcome to PitMad.

Let’s face it, the querying process is dull. After months (or years) working on your novel, you finally get the motivation to send it out to an agent and then… nothing. Weeks go by, the anticipation builds and you hope something great comes from all your hard work. But what if there was a way to get immediate feedback? All you have to do is whittle your entire novel down into 280 characters. Welcome to PitMad.

PitMad is a quarterly pitch contest held on Twitter. Writers who wish to take part in the event, tweet out their pitch up to three times throughout the day, using the required hashtag. Agents watching the event, favorite tweets as a way of requesting pages.

As a writer in the query trenches, I thought I’d give this unique pitch contest a try.

Here are the 6 Lessons I Learned from PitMad


Since it was my first time taking part in a Twitter pitch contest, I had no clue what I was preparing for (let alone how to prepare for it). But, when preparing for anything, it always helps to go to the source.

The PitchWars website (founders of PitMad) provides a list of guidelines for participating, helpful videos, and outside links to resources to help newbies make the most of their pitching efforts.


The event took place on a Thursday from 8am-8pm, but I couldn’t sit on my laptop the entire day. That’s where scheduling apps come in. I used Buffer to schedule my three pitches throughout the day, but there are plenty of scheduling apps out there.

The night before the event, set up your three pitches in your post calendar. You can have the app distribute them during the optimal times or set your own times. Remember, you can post three pitches per project.


You have 280 characters to pitch. That’s characters, not words, and you must leave room for the PitMad hashtag, hashtags for your genre(s) and audience. That gives just enough room to provide the hook for your story- aka, the elevator pitch.

This is difficult but helps if you think of riding in an elevator with your dream publisher. You have only a few seconds to get them interested in your novel. There’s no time for character names, or backstory. Keep it quick and intriguing. And don’t forget to add some variety to your three tweets.


The writing community on Twitter is full of talented people who enjoy helping others. And, if you’re participating in a social media pitching contest, it helps to be social.

While agents are the only ones who should like/favorite pitches, you can help your fellow writers out by retweeting their pitches. This shows support for their pitches, and in return, they will do the same for you. Be sure to save the PitMad search and check in throughout the day.


Things move fast during these pitch events and your tweets are sure to get lost in the crowd. Be sure to pin your first tweet of the day to the top of your profile feed. This will provide a way for others to see what you are pitching when they click on your profile page.

It also helps to copy the link to your pinned tweet, as you will find many generous writers willing to retweet pitches to their followers throughout the day.


It can be easy for a newbie to get discouraged by writers who amass hundreds of retweets and likes from around the world. This could simply mean they have a further reach or more influential people in their network. Whatever the case, you should be proud for putting yourself and your work out there for all to see.

PitMad is just one of many pitch events that take place on social media. The trick is to find what works best for you.

Happy Writing.


Lucas Horn

Lucas Horn is a creative designer who is attracted to men and True Crime, a trifecta which profoundly influenced his debut novel, The Midnight Blaze. When he isn't designing or writing, Lucas likes to travel and search for unique writing locations.

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