Poker success at writers’ conferences

Posted on 04/27/2010


Hey all, long time no type. Sorry, I’ve been busy as a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest.

I was talking to a writer friend today who got asked for a full from an agent at a conference. I don’t know if you know this, but there are really only five things that can happen when you talk to an agent at a conference about your awesome novel.  (And no, I didn’t include the agent flipping the table over on you, and running out the door yelling, “TECHNICAL SUPPORT!”)

I figured I’d equate these to poker hands. Since it’s still a gamble with the agent even after your ten minute pitch session.

Okay, let’s start with the suckiest pocket pair you can have in Texas Hold em. 7-2 offsuit. It’s pretty damn near impossible to make a hand off this.This would equate to an agent saying “Not for me.” after you’re done pitching your story.  It pretty much means you wasted ten minutes of your time and ten of theirs. Do more research next time on your agent. Make sure they’re looking for what you write.

Next let’s go with suited connectors. Basically these are two cards that are in the same suit, and incremental.
It’s not a bad couple of cards to have in your hand. You can play a straight or a flush.  But the odds still aren’t great.
This would be akin to you having an agent say, “Send a query to my agency.” Not great, but they didn’t tell you no.

Pocket pairs aren’t great (if they’re small) but you’ve already got a pair to start the hand with.
This is like an agent saying “Send me a partial.”  They like it enough to want to see more, but are still not 100%.

Ace King in the pocket is a damn good starting hand. Especially if they are suited. You can play a straight, or a flush, or just wait for a king or ace to come up on the flop.
Some players prefer to see AK in their hands more than AA.  But for our purposes, my dear friends, this will serve as an agent saying, “Send me a full.”
You see, they want to see the whole thing, not just a little, which means you wowed them. Good job!!!

Ahhh…there it is. What most every poker player loves to see when he or she checks his or her (isn’t it just easier to say THEY and THEIR!?!?!) pocket. Two bullets staring them in the face.  This is allegedly the best pocket pair to start a game of hold em.
So with this, we will equate an agent offering representation ON THE SPOT.
(Rare, I know…but I’ve seen it happen!)

Best of luck getting a good hand.