Sorry! Discovery Day 2016 is now FULLY BOOKED. However, if you would like to take your chances, we will be running a Wild Card Queue in-store on Saturday 27 February. If a customer who has already been allocated a one-to-one pitch does not claim their place, we will be able to offer their pitch time to a person chosen from the Wild Card Queue.
Very Important: We cannot guarantee that by joining the Wild Card Queue you will get a chance to pitch. You may well spend the day in Foyles without speaking to an agent (though we'd argue a day in Foyles is not such a bad thing!).
You're a writer. You've always been a writer. You've never been a writer.
You've got your novel in your head. It's down on paper. It's in the bottom drawer.
Whether you've got your whole manuscript in your hand or your idea still needs developing, whether you're piling up rejection slips or you're just not sure how to get noticed, starting out as a fiction author can be a brave new world of publishers, agents and trial and error--not to mention having to contend with character arcs, plotting and killing your darlings.
So we present Discovery Day 2016, a free event for aspiring novelists in association with award-winning literary agents Curtis Brown and Conville & Walsh--a day of 'speed-dating style' pitching sessions, workshopping and publishing industry insight to help take you from novel idea to the doors of publication.
Our two previous Discovery Days, in 2012 and 2013, each gave over 500 new writers the opportunity to engage in one-to-one sessions with leading agents and develop their ideas with the industry experts. Fully booked within days of their announcement, the events saw aspiring authors travel to Foyles from across the world for their chance to take part. We're now opening registration to the biggest Discovery Day yet, taking place across two levels of our new flagship building.
Always keen to meet writers and discover new talent, the teams from Curtis Brown and their sister agency Conville & Walsh return to offer their professional feedback. With strong reputations for launching debut authors (including Emma Healey, S J Watson, Nathan Filer and Rachel Joyce) the agencies between them represent big names such as David Mitchell, Howard Jacobson and Sarah Hall. And Curtis Brown Creative--the agency's writing school--has seen 17 of their students achieve major publishing deals, including Jessie Burton, Kate Hamer and Janet Ellis.
If you're lucky enough to grab a place at this year's event, you'll start with a six-minute one-on-one session with an agent who'll read your opening page and hear your 30-second verbal pitch before offering their feedback. Then you'll head to a short group session with fellow writers and agents, where you can ask questions about the writing and publication process. The day then ends with a separately ticketed panel event focusing on the extraordinary journey of Elizabeth is Missing, last year's biggest-selling debut novel. And of course, as well as industry professionals, you'll be spending the whole day meeting like-minded aspiring authors!
The Auditorium and The Gallery at Foyles, 107 Charing Cross Road, WC2H 0DT
SORRY - FULLY BOOKED
Don't forget that the 4pm panel event is ticketed separately--please visit the online listing for full details and booking if you'd like to attend.
Discovery Day Itinerary
10.45am-3.30pm: One-to-One Pitching and Feedback Sessions
The Auditorium, Level 6
New writers will have the chance to show their opening page and give a verbal overview of their novel-in-progress to an agent from Curtis Brown or Conville & Walsh in a one-to-one session (this will be around 6 minutes in duration). Agents will read the first page and listen to a 30 second verbal pitch. They will draw on their expertise to provide on-the-spot verbal feedback.
The Gallery, Level 5
Following their pitch sessions, writers will be shown through to the Gallery at Foyles where they can join a small group to spend a few minutes asking Curtis Brown and Conville & Walsh agents, and ask any questions they may have about writing, publishing and literary agents.
4.00pm-5.00pm: Elizabeth is Discovered Panel Event
The Auditorium, Level 6
A panel discussion with audience Q&A on the journey from pen to publication of bestselling debut Elizabeth Is Missing, featuring author Emma Healey, her Curtis Brown agent Karolina Sutton and publisher Venetia Butterfield in conversation with Anna Davis of Curtis Brown Creative. Please note that this panel event is separately ticketed and your RSVP for Discovery Day 2016 does not include access to this event.
Rules for one-to-one sessions
- Curtis Brown and Conville & Walsh will give feedback on one novel-in-progress only per participant in the one-to-one session.
- Participants are only eligible for one one-to-one session.
- Feedback will be given on novels-in-progress only. This is not an event for those writing non-fiction, short fiction, poetry or other literary forms.
- Writers are asked to indicate in their registration details whether their novel is for adults or children (including Young Adult).
- After registering, writers will be contacted by email with a ticket confirming a time slot for their one-to-one and surgery on 27 February. The times will be approximate and in hour-long bands. The one-to-one session will take place any time during that hour but may run beyond the hour slot.
- Curtis Brown and Conville & Walsh staff are keen to meet new writers and discuss their work, but cannot offer representation based on one-to-one sessions. Representation is a big commitment for both the agent and the writer, and this is not a decision that can be made in six minutes.
- Latecomers and those without confirmed reservations will not be admitted.