Anne R. Allen’s Blog… with Ruth Harris
The Tyranny Of The Time Stamp.
We all live under the lash of the digital clock and the tyranny of the time stamp. It’s not just us, it’s everyone everywhere —
Fast food and even faster fashion.
Pro chess players have 2 minutes to make their moves. On each move 12 seconds is added to the time they have remaining on the clock.
A pro tennis player has 25 seconds to serve.
Major league pitchers have 15 seconds to throw a pitch with the bases empty and 20 seconds with a runner on base.
Hitters need to be in the batter’s box with eight seconds on the pitch clock.
Your Uber And Your Oven Timer
It will take you 5 minutes to read this article about Taylor Swift and 6 minutes to read that article about Ron DeSantis. (How do I know? The NYT now includes an estimated reading time with every article.)
But it doesn’t stop there.
Your oven timer tells you your roast chicken will be done in 8 minutes.
Laundry? Your laundry will be finished in 10 minutes.
And what about your Uber? You don’t have to guess. Your Uber will arrive in 17 minutes.
I don’t know how long it will take you to read this post cuz Anne and I actually love our readers.
Still, you have access to this otherwise vast helpful — but also annoying —trove of info because of the ubiquity of the digital timer.
When Your Elevator Pitch is Too Long
Time counts — yours and theirs — and especially right now.
There are moments — at a hectic, noisy party, running into a former colleague at a football game, at a busy class reunion — when even the elevator pitch is too long.
Still, you’re excited about your book and want to spread the word.
Here is where the Quick Pitch comes to the rescue.
It’s like the Elevator Pitch only shorter. Much shorter.
The Do’s and Don’ts of the Quick Pitch
Sometimes the headline of your blurb (the one you worked so hard on, right?) will be perfect.
If not, you will have to create the ever-handy, indispensable Quick Pitch.
Here’s how —
DO go for the hook and explain the basic concept first, because, according to molecular biologist John Medina of the University of Washington School of Medicine, the human brain requires meaning before details.
When listeners doesn’t understand the basic concept right at the beginning, they have a hard time processing the rest of the information.
Snakes on a plane is a great example.
Here are a few more —
- Nurse Ratchett meets Rosemary’s Baby.
- Hannibal Lecter at Beverly Hills High.
- Legally Blonde as told by John Grisham.
- Gone With The Wind as written by Mickey Spillane.
DON’T be afraid to be outrageous.
- An obnoxious TV chef hides from a serial killer at a snooty cotillion for high society debutantes.
- How about an opposites-attract romance between a plumber and a poet with a stopped-up sink?
- Or a crass, loud-mouthed politician gets rip roaring drunk and comes to in a Buddhist monastery dedicated to silence, serenity and meditation?
Link to the rest at Anne R. Allen’s Blog… with Ruth Harris