To start off, we were introduced to our three great agents of the night, Deborah Grosvenor of Kneerim and Williams Agency; and Paige Wheeler and Jeff Kleinman of Folio Literary Management. Hearts raced, faces flushed, voices cracked while each logline was read aloud to the panel of judges for their first impressions. The judges deliberated (in front of us all) as to whether the story would garner an additional reading. They would decide if the submission would go into a yes, maybe, or no pile. If your story was put into the no pile, you knew the agent would not read past your logline. If it was put in the maybe pile, the agents would look further into your query letter, and if your logline made it into the yes pile, you were in the running.
I'm happy to say my story was one of the original six to make the final round, then two more were added from the maybe pile,bringing the total finalists to eight. The beginnings of all eight stories were read to the audience (for 1.5 minutes a piece). Then the round of judging took place. The audience voted for the winners of the first Leesburg Idol. It was enlightening, educational, and a great way to network with other writers and agents. And though I did not ultimately win one of the generous prizes, I came away feeling like a winner. The evening was a success for all!
If you live in the Northern Virginia area, you should check out Northern Virginia Writers and the Writer's Center for a listing of more great upcoming events.