I’d been thinking for a while that I could use an elevator pitch for The Day-Glo Brothers. Then, this morning, I saw this item in Charlesbridge‘s author/illustrator questionnaire:
In approximately 75 words, please provide a description of your book.
In exactly 75 words, here’s what I came up with:
“You know those fluorescent oranges and yellows and greens that you see every day on traffic cones, safety vests, highlighters, and so on? A hundred years ago, those colors didn’t even exist. The Day-Glo Brothers is the story of the guys who invented those colors while they were in their teens and 20s back during the Depression and World War II. It all started with a magic act and an accident at the ketchup factoryâ€¦”
Be honest, now: Would this make you take the stairs?
Well, I totally want to hear the rest of the story, but then I’m probably geekier than your average elevator rider, so I’m not sure my thoughts on the matter are worth all that much.
“It all started with a magic act and an accident at the ketchup factory…” I love that bit. It’s got me ready to run down there and harass you tell me what happened next :-)
I was feeling like you closed with your lede so I jumbled it around.
“It all started with a magic act and an accident at the ketchup factory. A hundred years ago those fluorescent oranges and yellows and greens that you see every day on traffic cones, safety vests, highlighters, those colors didn’t even exist. The Day-Glo Brothers is the story of the young guys who invented those colors during the Depression and World War II.”
I’m not saying it’s better this way, I just reversed the order to see how it works. An old trick I learned in high school journalism. I do think the ‘ketchup factory’ line is a stronger opener.
Great pitch! I’d buy it. But in all fairness, I’d buy it without even hearing the pitch so I’m not really a good judge.
Good pitch! but I second third and fourth the people who plan to buy the book regardless. I can’t wait for the Day-Glo Brothers.
I agree with David on starting this off with, “It all started with a magic act and an accident at the ketchup factory.” Great sentence and so intriguing!
(It made me Google them, so you’ve got me hooked!)
Wow — thanks for not taking the stairs, everyone. I may have to try two versions of my pitch — one with ketchup and magic at the beginning, one at the end.
First an elevator pitch, and now an A/B test. Heaven help me, I’m becoming a marketer…