Gwen Strauss

Keeping Track

The Pitch

January 31, 2014

Tags: Writing, novel, publishing, France, provence, Guru, agent, pitch

I am in the final (I think) phases of writing my novel, My Stray Guru. I am not sure how long I have been working on it. But I like to tell people that I am a writer and a failed novelist. This will be my fourth novel manuscript. Each one takes about 5- 10 years to write. I have come very close to getting one of them published. I have been hopeful and despondent. I have felt scared and brave. I have been angry and found laughter the best cure to existential despair.

The best moment of the process is when I am in the middle of it. When I have the book roughed out and I can write each day. I have a place to go and I can enjoy getting there. Nothing is better than that.

Beginning is brutal. Ending is equally hard. Today when I came to my desk I did not know what to do. I have to begin now the pitch, the sell, the search for someone to publish it and get it out there.

So I worked on my pitch. Here it is:

What happens when a guru you met briefly in your youth, shows up on your doorstep twenty years later? Sarah, a middle-aged veterinarian and single mom, met a Buddhist monk on her Junior year abroad in college, now he wants to move in with her, go to the movies, drive a car, eat bacon and have sex. In this comic novel, Baba, the monk-gone-wild, forces Sarah to re-examine her relationships with clients, pets, ex-lovers, colleagues and children. The novel is also a love story that explores the deep relationships we have with our pets contrasted against the disappointments we often feel with each other in our search for love and meaning.

Selected Works

Juvenile Nonfiction Ages 7-10, Grades 2-5
The True Story of a young Holocaust survivor
Children's picture book
In the early 1950s, newly built interstate highways invited Americans to travel by automobile, but the open road wasn't so open for African-Americans, especially in the South.
Until he meets Marcia, Eric doesn't speak -- the Night Shimmy does all the talking.
Strauss explores the theme of metamorphosis in fairy tales in this collection of poetry.
a series of poems in the form of a sonnet garland
Kay koule twompe soley men li pa twompe lapli. A leaky house can fool the sun, but it can't fool the rain. --Haitian Proverb
The adventure story of a young couple who sail to the Yucatan

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