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Pitch Writing Advice

edited August 2012 in Do The Work
Putting together a new pitch for a submission, and was just curious - do you guys follow any kind of template or rules (besides the submission guidelines, of course) when putting your pitches together?

Do you like to lead in with a high concept, or elevator pitch? Or do you jump right into a story synopsis?

Let me know some of your experience and best practices when putting together pitches to editors.

Comments

  • I guess it depends on the story.
    Some comics are high concepts so using the "blank-meets-blank" routine can work.

    But other comics are character-driven (i.e., The Walking Dead) which on the surface might appear to be a rather boring generic pitch.

    Of course, a comic can have both, but we're talking about how to pitch it (not what it actually becomes).

    I might not be the best to talk about this because my work with Image comics has allowed me to play without worrying about a pitch.  My only real experience comes from my work with Marvel.  They asked me to pitch something to them (without giving me a clue to what character to use) so I created over a dozen paragraph-length pitches involving several characters.  In that case I opened with a *question*.  Example:  What if Capt. America lost his shield?  What if Squirrel Girl had to choose between her hero career and the love of her life?  Stuff like that.
  • edited August 2012
    I can only speak about creator owned, but I know other writers who have taken a similar approach to Jimmie for WFH. I can't speak for how effective it is or is not.

    For a creator-owned pitch:

    Your cover letter should include the elevator pitch (2 or 3 sentences) plus information about format and the creative team. (Also, remind the editor if you've met them or communicated with them before.) If you have a blank-meets-blank high concept it goes here.

    Synopsis: 1 page explanation of the story from go to woe.

    Character sheet: 1 page giving a couple of sentences about each principal character. This is often optional, but I find that it helps me free up a bit of space in the synopsis.

    In my limited experience the cover letter and the sequential sample are the most important things. Synopses and character sheets might not even get read... so if there's a twist in the story you might want to look at strategies for presenting it in the cover letter.

    The main thing is to keep it short and sharp. 


  • edited August 2012
    Think I posted this before, but its my pitch for Not Wrapped Tight. If it goes to Archaia they already know who I am.

    ***

    NOT WRAPPED TIGHT    

    story and art by Marvin Mann

    I have always preferred to live and I am not a fatalist to walk back into death with eyes open and arms flung wide. If I must kill to live, I put it out of my mind. We must all kill to live and we put it out of our minds.

    _ Irisi of the Blue Reed People


    Concept: Risen from her tomb after fifty centuries, an Egyptian princess seeks the remains of her husband that he may join her in a new life. To her surprise, he’d prefer to stay dead.

    Summary:  The story takes place primarily in 1799, after Naploeon’s Army of the Orient  has captured Egypt. But it is framed by scenes set in 1925 Paris, and contains flashbacks to the Upper Nile circa 3200 BCE, and a dreamlike state on the River of the Dead. We begin on the Upper Nile, visiting the Red Sea, Alexandria, Malta, Italy and the Alps, and finally Marseille.

    Book 1  From her home in 1925 Paris, Irisi tells us her story.

    She recalls boating on the River of the Dead with her husband until 1799 when the physician Camille Strauss-Kemp and his fiance Helene Leveque discover a tomb on the Upper Nile containing the mummified remains of the hero Anokhemnebi and his wife Irisi. Driven off by grave robbers, Camille escapes with the body of Anokkhemnebi, but leaves Helene trapped in the tomb with Irisi’s mummy.

    Separated from the great love of her life for the first time in 5000 years, Irisi awakens and forces Helene to carry her across the Eastern Desert to the Red Sea where Camille is shipping Anokhemnebi’s mummy to Marseille. But the cost of living again is high. To regain her full youth and vitality, Irisi must from time to time consume the ka, the spirit, of the living. The unfortunate Helene becomes her first victim and the first ghost to haunt Irisi.

    Catching up to Camille at a nameless port town on the Red Sea, Irisi seduces and persuades him to take her to her husband. During this period she tells him of her life with her beloved Nebibi and the adventures they had. The first book ends at their arrival in Alexandria, and modern Irisi’s recollection of a lie she told Camille to complete her hold on him.

    Book 2  In Paris, Irisi continues her tale.

    From Alexandria, they take a French frigate to Malta where Irisi, having captured the attentions of the frigate’s Captain, makes him her second victim. Camille is appalled and abandons her. Irisi then makes her way up the Italian peninsula, where she is waylaid and sidetracked into the Alps where she spends a night in a cave talking to a man frozen in ice.

    By the time she arrives in Marseille, she is trailing a string of the ghosts of her victims, and catches up to Camille at the home of his solicitor. Following them to the warehouse where her husband is held, she takes charge of the scene, defies the efforts of her ghosts to stop her, and succeeds in raising her Anokhemnebi from the dead.

    For him to fully resurrect, she offers him Camille’s ka. To her shock, he declines and commands her to return with him to their tomb in Egypt, where they will die again. A dutiful wife, Irisi follows him back, and they drink from a poison drought. Anokhemnebi dies, but Irisi has fooled him and spits the drink out.

    The story ends in Paris, where Irisi acknowledges her nature to us, and defies the ghosts who still follow her. They are legion.


    ***

    I start with a catchy quote.

    Follow with the concept (note I cheerfully give away the ending)

    Short summery,

    and then the longer summery.

    all on one page.

  • Thanks for the great info and insight here, guys.

    When pitching to editors, have they given you any advice on your pitch submissions? Anything that you probably didn't think about at the time, but upon seeing their comments now seems very obvious or was just good advice?
  • edited August 2012
    I've never received any feedback on the actual pitch. 

    If it's a 'no' they talk about the sample pages, if anything. If it's a 'yes' it's just 'yes'. 

    If they have questions, in my experience, they are usually about story points or financial arrangements. 
  • I think I'm probably the last person in the world anybody should go to for pitch advice, but fwiw, here's the text from the Gone to Amerikay OGN pitch document (project was at the time titled Thousands Are Sailing), which past muster at DC.  This represents the end result of three or four drafts of the pitch, working with a Vertigo editor to get it ready for internal presentation to Karen Berger and Paul Levitz.  I think there may have been a few slight changes between when I sent this off and when the presentation got made, but this is pretty much it.

    (And for anybody who intends at some point to read the book, of course, spoilers abound.)


    THOUSANDS ARE SAILING

    Proposal by Derek McCulloch

    FORMAT:  OGN, approximately 120-130 pp.  Script by Derek McCulloch, art by Colleen
    Doran.

    OVERVIEW:  Human drama about Irish emigration to
    America, spanning 90 years and exploring the evolving experience of Irish
    émigrés in New York City—from a penniless woman struggling to raise a daughter
    in 1870 in the slum of Five Points, to a young man carving out a career as a
    folk singer in 1960, the year America elected its first Irish-Catholic
    President.

    AUDIENCE POTENTIAL:  For more than a century and a half, America and Ireland have shared a singular
    relationship.  Immigrants came as cheap
    labor for the building of bridges and railways; their children and
    grandchildren learned to use the new land’s political structures for their own
    benefit and found their way to positions of power.  Stories of emigration, of the auld sod and
    the new, inevitably became an ingrained part of American popular culture.  The tension between the longing for the land
    left behind and the hope for a home of one’s own making has informed great
    stories in many media through the years—John Ford’s Irish movies, the works of
    Frank McCourt, the music of The Pogues, William Kennedy’s Albany novels, Martin
    Scorsese’s Gangs of New York, and so on. 
    The enduring fascination these works hold for audiences all over America attest to the resonant power their
    stories still hold, not just for the children of Irish immigrants, but for
    anyone with an interest in the story of America.

    PLOT SYNOPSIS

    (The stories labeled “Ciara’s Story” and “Johnny’s Story” will be
    intercut with one another, tying together when we get to the part labeled
    “Fintan’s Story.)

    Ciara’s Story:  In 1870, Ciara O’Dwyer and
    her two-year-old daughter Maire arrive in New
    York City. 
    Ciara’s husband, Fintan, is to be following in several months.  In the interim, Ciara and Maire will be
    staying with cousins who have been living in New York for several years.  Expecting to find America a land of milk and honey,
    Ciara is instead shocked to learn that her cousins live in a squalid tenement
    apartment in Five Points, then a teeming den of drunkenness, prostitution, and
    criminality.  Making the best of it,
    Ciara earns a little money by taking in laundry.  She sustains herself with hope for the
    future, kept alive by the letters she receives from Fintan; and memories of the
    past, evoked in the stories she tells Maire of the land they’ve left behind.

    Her hope falters as Fintan’s letters cease and his
    predicted arrival date comes and goes. 
    One day, Ciara meets Tim Shea, an acquaintance from her home
    village.  Tim tells Ciara that Fintan has
    abandoned her, joining the army and shipping off to India.  Unable to believe it at first, Ciara
    gradually grows despondent as Fintan’s silence continues.

    Some
    time later, Ciara meets Tim again when he runs through her alley, pursued by
    members of Dead Rabbit gang, led by the murderous Francis Corcoran.  Ciara hides Tim until the danger has
    passed.  He emerges from hiding, saying
    that the Dead Rabbits must have mistaken him for somebody else.  Claiming his only motives are gratitude and a
    wish to see her happy, Tim takes Ciara out for a meal.  Gradually, a relationship develops between
    them.  Tim briefly gets Ciara a maid’s
    job in the home of Marm Mandel­baum, the pre-eminent fence in 19th century New York.  It belatedly dawns on Ciara that Tim is
    himself a thief of some notoriety. 
    Later, Francis Corcoran visits Ciara in her home.  Ciara is frightened, thinking that Corcoran
    knows her connection to Tim—but he’s only come to engage her services as a
    laundress.

    For a time, Ciara is swept up by Tim’s glamour, but her
    misgivings grow.  He’s a romantic,
    charming figure, but he’s never on the up-and-up, and he’s nasty when he’s
    drunk.  Eventually it emerges that he habitually
    gambles away all his ill-gotten money and that he personally owes Corcoran a
    large amount.  As funds get tighter, he
    tries to convince Ciara to prostitute herself for him.  She refuses and tries to get him out of her
    life.  In a drunken argument, Tim makes
    the great error of threatening Maire, and Ciara hits him in the face with her
    hot flatiron.  He falls over a rickety
    railing and plunges down a stairwell to his death.  Horrified, Ciara runs down the stairs after
    him.  She hunches over his body, sure
    she’s bound for jail, until she sees Francis Corcoran standing by the door with
    his dirty shirts.  “Go back to your
    laundry, missus,” he tells her, “there’s nothing here that need concern you.”

    Johnny’s Story:  In 1960, as John Kennedy is beginning
    his bid for the Presidency, Johnny McCormack travels from Ireland to New York, dreaming of becoming a Broadway
    star.  He rooms with Brian Fitzgerald, a
    school friend from his own town, who is also an aspiring actor.  Together they try to storm Broadway, where
    Brian is understudying for a role in “The Hostage,” and is trying to cultivate
    the play’s author, Brendan Behan, who is boozily touring New York. 
    Instead, they stumble into a burgeoning folk music scene and discover
    they can attract a greater audience with the songs they learned as children
    than they can by acting.  They also
    discover they’re attracting each other. 
    Brian, the more worldly of the two, is a pansexual rake.  Johnny, sheltered and repressed, is forced
    for the first time in his life to confront his sexuality.

    Johnny forms relationships of another kind with several
    women in the folk club world, and with his landlady, Mrs. Lefkowitz.  Mrs. Lefkowitz believes Johnny, not Brian,
    has the singular talent, and is always trying to get him to speak to her
    son-in-law who works in television. 
    Johnny is indulgently indifferent; he needs connections in the music
    business now, not television.

    The relationship with Brian is maddening.  Johnny believes himself to be falling in
    love, but Brian keeps things on a strictly superficial level, coming back to
    Johnny whenever other options have failed to pan out.  After a drink-fueled fight with fickle Brian,
    Johnny spends the night on the shore
    of Liberty Island and has
    an otherworldly experience.  He’s visited
    by the ghost of an old Irishman who tells him a garbled story of lost love and
    murder.  Overcome, Johnny makes a promise
    whose meaning he doesn’t even understand: 
    when the ghost says “Sing her my song,” Johnny says, “I will.”

    In the morning, the encounter seems like a delirium,
    but Johnny is still moved by the ghost’s story of loss.  He resolves to reconcile with Brian—only to
    be betrayed even more thoroughly than already. 
    Brian has quietly recorded a song of Johnny’s composition, claiming it
    as his own.  Johnny learns about it only
    when he hears the song on the radio. 
    Brian himself is nowhere to be found.

    Hung over, Johnny visits Mrs. Lefkowitz and tells
    her his troubles.  Johnny is surprised to
    find how familiar she is with his repertoire of old Irish songs.  Lefkowitz is just her married name, she
    points out.  She’s as Irish as he
    is.  It’s election night, and as they
    watch the returns on television, Johnny and Mrs. Lefkowitz argue about
    politics; he’s for Kennedy and she’s for Nixon. 
    As the news signs off at midnight with a winner undeclared,
    Mrs. Lefkowitz observes, shrugging, “It’s an Irishman either way.”  She asks Johnny to sing some more.  As Johnny begins to sing another song he’s
    been working on, he’s astonished when Mrs. Lefkowitz sings along.  It’s not a traditional song from his
    repertoire—it’s “Ciara’s Song,” which he learned from the ghost on Liberty Island.  He
    asks Mrs. Lefkowitz how she knows the song and she tells him her mother always
    sang it to her when she was little.  The
    truth dawning on him, Johnny asks, “What was her name?”

    Fintan’s
    Story (as he revealed it to Johnny): 
    We cut back to the night on Liberty Island and learn that
    the ghost was Fintan O’Dwyer who, contrary to Tim Shea’s lie to Ciara, never
    joined the army and never went to India.  The business that kept Fintan in Ireland
    after Ciara and Maire’s departure was the arrest of his brother as a Fenian
    rebel.  Fintan hoped to discover the
    informer who’d betrayed his brother, but wasn’t successful.  On the ship to America, Fintan runs into Tim Shea
    who, unknown to Fintan, is the informer. 
    As the ship is nearing New
    York harbor, Tim, thinking that Fintan has discovered
    him, decides to act first.  He stabs
    Fintan and, promising suggestively that he’ll look Ciara up in New York, tosses him
    overboard.

    The Ending:  Mrs. Lefkowitz takes Johnny
    to a rest home to visit her 92-year-old mother: 
    Maire O’Connell née O’Dwyer. 
    Maire is blind but lucid, and Johnny keeps a promise he made to
    Fintan.  He tells her her father’s story
    and sings her Ciara’s Song.  As Maire
    drifts off to sleep, Johnny is approached by Arnie, Mrs. Lefkowitz’s
    son-in-law.  He asks if Johnny has ever
    recorded the song.  Johnny says no, and
    Arnie says it’s just the sort of thing his boss would love.  That boss, it turns out, is Ed Sullivan, for
    whose show Arnie is a booker.  We close
    with Johnny singing Ciara’s Song on The Ed Sullivan Show, introducing it as “A
    song by an Irishman who wanted to come to America.”

    Possible Framing Sequence:  I’m undecided whether or not
    this constitutes one layer too many, but I may frame the story Citizen Kane-style, with a smaller sequence
    set in the present day.  The lead in this
    sequence would be Paul Rankin, a Bono-type rock star coming to New York to record an
    album of Johnny McCormack covers.  The point
    would be to further underscore the progression in the ocean crossings:  Ciara comes as a peasant, Johnny as a
    striver, and Paul as a conquering hero. 
    The conclusion of this sequence would fold into the ending of Johnny’s
    story, as Paul, in concert, introduces Ciara’s Song.

    WHO I AM/WHAT THIS BOOK IS TO ME: 
    My first graphic novel, the critically-acclaimed Stagger Lee, was nominated for Eisner and Eagle awards and won four
    Glyph Comics Awards, including Best Writer and Story of the Year.  My second graphic novel, Displaced Persons, will be released in June.  Colleen and I previously collaborated on “Pretty
    Good Year,” a story for the Tori Amos anthology, Comic Book Tattoo.

    While I’m neither Irish nor American, stories of the
    Irish in America
    have held a great fascination for me for as long as I can remember.  The first music I remember listening to as a
    child was by The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem, and today as I teach my
    daughter the words to “The Irish Rover,” “The Parting Glass,” or “Tim Finnegan’s
    Wake,” I have the curious sensation of passing on a birthright that both is and
    isn’t mine.  This book would be a rare
    and deeply personal opportunity to do the same thing on a wider scale—to pass
    on to a new generation the stories I grew up with, and the history they
    represent.

    COLLEEN’S STYLE:  Colleen’s intention is to work in the same
    style she used for “Pretty Good Year” in Comic
    Book Tattoo
    .  The pages from that
    story can serve as a sample of what this book could look like.  This dreamy painted style is perfectly suited
    to a story about dreams for the future and ghosts of the past.




  • edited August 2012
    Dunno if it's my background in prose or just general clueless-ness, but I've always provided a cover letter separately from the summary. 

    I've rarely provided information about the audience or my own connection to the material unless they were actually requested. Did DC ask you for those, Derek, or do you always include them?
  • I can't remember why the audience stuff was in there, though I know an inevitable question in any followup is always "who's the audience for this?"  Maybe I was just anticipating that.  The "my connection" stuff was there because the editor specifically asked me to elaborate why the material was personally important to me...apparently considered a plus, in that market anyway.
  • Also, I notice that your summary explains the events in chronological order, with notes about the way that the stories intercut at the start and the end. 

    I recently pitched a project where the synopsis showed how everything was cut together... and I was told to do it over, showing the events in order. 
  • I should add that I rarely have a real answer to "who's the audience for this?" and generally end up blowing a lot of smoke.  Which is a big reason why I'm a bad person to ask for pitch advice.

    That aside...I think it's best to present stories like these as straight chronology in the pitch, because it's easier to understand in a quick read...in a pitch you need to get the point across, not tell the story artfully.

    And it's important to remember, though, that you still need to entertain and seduce your audience.  Just in a different way.
  • "Who is the audience? " is the sort of question that begs for smoke blowing. If the prospective publisher can't tell from the pitch, than its an unclear pitch, or the publisher is unclear about their business.
  • What, am I the only one who gets asked that every fucking time?
  • Come to think of it, maybe I am, because I'm the one who's always pitching stuff that isn't ordinarily done in comics.
  • I don't think you are. I think it gets asked a lot, or at least, people think they need to explain it. And while knowing how to target an audience is important, I guess, its something that should be clear without requiring an explanation. But that said, its something that has come up in my pitches in the past.

    And I'll put The Lone and Level Sands, Some New Kind of Slaughter and Inanna's Tears up against any of your books for oddball content :)
  • Strictly audience wise: I tend to, for better or worse, focus less on the audience and more on an Amazon-esque "if you liked THIS, then my comic is in a similar vein, but not the exact same vein, because I'm a Unique Authorial Voice".

    The hypothetical pro is that I'm saying "look, someone else made the same gamble, more or less, and it paid off". The con is that it could also be taken as "hey, want to hire off-brand so-and-so?". And I'm not sure any publisher wants to do that, especially if they think they can get so-and-so.

    (My platonic ideal of pitching is the way Will Eisner described his method in Eisner/Miller: just hand the publisher a finished or mostly finished book and go "Hey. Wanna publish this? Okay, cool." My stories are always meh on paper, but tend to work out okay in the execution due to personality and good artist choices.)

  • I would think that identifying the audience to a potential publisher might help 1) to nudge them into understanding its marketability to people-who-aren't-them ("preteen girls would go for a TV show about ponies?"), and/or 2) to demonstrate that you'll be a help in promoting the book, because you already understand how to market it.
  • I would think that identifying the audience to a potential publisher might help 1) to nudge them into understanding its marketability to people-who-aren't-them ("preteen girls would go for a TV show about ponies?"), and/or 2) to demonstrate that you'll be a help in promoting the book, because you already understand how to market it.
    That's the way it is in book publishing. When I was shopping around a book a few years ago to agents (and publishers), my PROPOSAL alone was about 60 pages - only 10 or 20 of which were book excerpts. The rest were audience ID, marketing plans, competition analysis, promotion plans, etc.

    For most comic publishers that I've dealt with, none of that is necessary. But I think it helps to know that stuff. To be honest, I'm at the point where I almost want to ask that of people submitting stuff to Pop! Goes the Icon, because some of these people have no clue and no motivation.
  • @DerekMcCulloch I took a pitch class with Bryan Wood at NYCC 3 years ago and he gave us copies of all of his pitches, they follow almost exactly the same format as yours. I'm guessing that's because of the influence of Vertigo editors, I noticed that his pitch for Super Market was a bit less defined than DMZ and Northlanders.
  • Anyone who wants copies of my successful Batman pitches can email me, I'm happy to share them. My pitch format was stolen from Devin Grayson, who I'm sure lifted it from someone else.
  • Luther Strode Pitch - Only thing ommitted is my address and phone number (which I don't mind you having, but I don't want to make it too easy for random schmoes.)

     

    Justin
    Jordan

    JustinJordan@gmail.com

     

    The
    Comic:

     

    The
    Strange Talent of Luther Strode, a six issue, 22 pages per, full color
    miniseries.

     

    The Concept:

     

    On a whim, average geek Luther Strode sends for an exercise
    course he saw in the back of an old comic book. The course promises to turn him
    into the kind of man that can kick sand right back in the bully’s face, but all
    Luther expects is, at best, a corny old book.

     

    What he gets is the instruction manual and prime recruiting
    tool of a murder cult as old as mankind, and it does everything that it
    promised and much, much more. You can have everything you want, as long as
    you’re willing to pay the price, and Luther is about to find out just how high
    a price that can be.

     

     

    The  Crew:

     

    Writing:
    Justin Jordan’s work has appeared in more than a dozen comic book anthologies,
    along with being a three time competitor in DC’s Zuda competition. He lives in
    the wilds of Pennsylvania
    where he’s occasionally mistaken for a sasquatch. He’s not especially confident
    in his cover letter ability.

     

    Art: Tradd
    Moore was born in Snellville,
    Georgia where
    he was raised solely on the teachings of X-Men, Final
    Fantasy, and The Matrix. Somewhere along the
    way he took up drawing and never looked back. He graduated from the
    Savannah College of Art and Design in 2010 and has been locked in a room
    drawing comic books ever since. 

     

    Colors and Letters:
    Felipe Sobreiro is the artist behind
    THE NEW ADVENTURES OF SIGMUND FREUD and a handful of other short comics. He has
    published his work on Heavy Metal magazine, Image Comics’ POPGUN anthology and
    a couple of BOOM! Studios titles. He can be found at: http://www.sobreiro.com/


    Synopsis

    Issue One

     

    Broadly speaking, things are going pretty well for Luther
    Strode; his mother and him have escaped from Luther’s abusive father, he’s a
    got a good friend and there’s a girl at school who, at the very least, is aware
    that he exists.

     

    On the downside, Luther is scrawny, uncoordinated and
    hopelessly geeky, something he tries to change by ordering The Hercules Method,
    a bodybuilding course from an old comic book.

     

    The course works much better than expected, and Luther ends
    up nearly killing one of the high school jocks with his newfound strength.
    Meanwhile, the man who sent him the book, The Librarian, is making his way
    towards his new pupil.

     

    Issue Two

     

    Suspended from school for putting the bully in the hospital,
    Luther spends his days figuring out his newfound abilities and getting to know Petra, his new girlfriend.

     

    When Luther and his best friend Pete are caught up in a
    convenience store robbery, Luther is able to stop the criminals and escape
    unseen. To Pete, this is a clear indication that Luther has only one option: to
    become a superhero.

     

    Meanwhile, The Librarian kills the bullies, the first step
    in tearing Luther’s life apart so that he can become the perfect monster that
    Librarian is grooming him to be, by framing him as a killer.

     

    Issue Three

     

    Luther is becoming increasingly worried about Petra, who believes is
    being abused by her father.  He tries to
    push this into his tentative attempts to become a superhero, but he finds that
    fighting crime, even with superpowers, is harder than he expected.

     

    It takes an especially difficult turn when the Librarian
    shows up and tells him the secret of his new abilities: Luther is the newest
    recruit into a murder cult that dates back to Cane, and his abilities will
    eventually make him a killer.

     

    Issue Four

     

    Worried by what he learned from the Librarian, Luther gives
    up the Hercules Method and tries to become normal again.  When Petra
    disappears, he goes to confront her father, and nearly kills him in the
    process, learning that her father has sold her to a group of criminals. As
    Luther confronts the criminals, things go horribly wrong.

     

    Luther’s action continue to have repercussions that echo
    through his life as the Librarian kidnaps Pete, trying to get a better grasp of
    Luther’s mind. While Luther tears the criminals holding Petra apart, Pete is being tortured by the
    Librarian.

     

    Issue Five

     

    After killing the criminals, Luther is confronted by the
    Librarian, who tells him that it’s time to go with him. Luther refuses, and
    discovers that the Librarian has brought the police with him and that Luther is
    surrounded.

     

    While Petra
    goes out to try and distract the police, Luther tries to escape, having to
    fight past a SWAT team. Arriving home, Luther finds his mother missing and a
    dying Pete passing on a message from the Librarian, telling Luther to head
    home.

     

    Issue Six

     

    At his old home, the Librarian offers Luther a deal; if
    Luther kills his father, his mother can go free. Luther finally gives into the
    bloodlust and kills his father, and the Librarian congratulates him by snapping
    Luther’s mother’s neck.

     

    Luther attacks, and the fight ends up wrecking the house,
    the combatants and most of the neighborhood. As the police arrive, Petra in two, Luther
    kills the Librarian. As he looks at the cops, Luther realizes that he can only
    see them as victims, meat for the slaughter and that his bloodlust will never
    stop.

     

    He attacks them, attempting to kill himself to keep from
    becoming a real monster, and is brought down by hundreds of bullets while Petra screams. Killing
    himself to keep the only thing he has left to love alive. As the coroner drives
    away, Luther’s heart starts beating again.


    These were two seperate docs, cover letter and synopsis, and we included a cover and six lettered pages.
  • @SteveWallace - That's interesting.  I actually developed that format kind of on the fly, though I think I may have been tangentially influenced by some Vertigo pitches Ed Brubaker showed me something like twelve or thirteen years ago.  That is, I think I set up the different headings/categories based on my half-remembered impression of what he showed me.  I think also that the Vertigo editor had me toss out some of the stuff that I put in initially, but I don't remember what it was.  In fact, now that I think of it, before passing it on to the decision makers, she may have tossed out the "who's the audience" stuff that everybody was discussing above.  Can't find my final pdf of the pitch doc, so I can't be positive.
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