Pitch Wars Interview with Elizabeth Leis Newman, Krista Merle, and their mentor, Laura Heffernan
Oct19

Pitch Wars Interview with Elizabeth Leis Newman, Krista Merle, and their mentor, Laura Heffernan

Welcome to the Pitch Wars Team Interviews by Marnise Nicole Bringing you a closer look at each Pitch War Team and their project. Be sure to comment with support, comments, and questions.   Meet Elizabeth Leis Newman, Krista Merle and their mentor Laura Heffernan Team Awesome Laura Heffernan (Mentor), tell us a little about yourself. I’ll honestly read just about anything if it’s well done, but my favorite genre to read and write is women’s fiction. I adore chicklit, even though a lot of my stuff is a bit more serious. I’m really good at talking a lot on a variety of topics such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, board games, why Firefly needed about 6 more seasons, writing, and cheese. I’m less good at talking about myself. My writing style tends to be “vomit words onto the page and hope for the best.” But my editing is far more disciplined, and there’s where my stories tend to come alive. Elizabeth Leis Newman (Mentee), tell us a little about yourself.  As a classically trained journalist, I believe in Associated Press style and have the attention span of a gnat. It is a miracle I have ever completed a news story, much less a book, given that I am constantly going, “Ooh, look, shiny idea over there!” Basically, I’m Dug from Up yelling “Squirrel!” I read between 75 and 100 books a year, but I love women’s fiction the most. It’s my favorite genre to write in and read. I also read a fair amount of YA and literary fiction, and probably 10 non-fiction books a year. Books that helped with the research of CALLBACK include Annie composer Charles Strouse’s memoir and DRAMA HIGH by Michael Sokolove. I have little restraint in bookstores, and have about 25 books in a to-be-read pile. Fun facts: I was a cellist through college, where I primarily played in the pit orchestra for musicals. Last year I went to South Africa and got to commune with lions, hence the photo with lion cub Ruby. I’m a big animal person – when my husband and I got married at the Maryland Zoo, there were penguins at the cocktail hour. Their names are Tux and Tails. Krista Merle (Mentee), tell us a little about yourself. I find these “Introduce yourself” so hard! Couldn’t we just chat over a cup of coffee? No? Okay. So in my book, I make my characters describe themselves with three things. I’m going to try that now. My three things are: books, family, and horses. Although, judging by my free-time recently, I should probably mention Downton Abbey. My mom gave me...

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Pitch Wars Interview with Kat Hinkel and  Alivya Leighton and their mentor, Michelle Hauck
Oct19

Pitch Wars Interview with Kat Hinkel and Alivya Leighton and their mentor, Michelle Hauck

Welcome to the Pitch Wars Team Interviews Bringing you a closer look at each Pitch War Team and their project. Be sure to comment with support, comments, and questions.   Meet Kat Hinkel and Alivya Leighton and their mentor, Michelle Hauck Team Mic Drop Michelle Hauck (Mentor), tell us a little about yourself. I love many types of books from biography and history to commercial fiction, but my favorite stories are epic fantasy. I’ve written dystopian and humorous middle grade, but always come back to the wide ranging stories of intense world building in epic fantasy. I’m a geek who obsesses over Supernatural and the Marvel universe movies and tv. I’m into all things Star Wars and Star Trek. Don’t get me started on the Lord of the Rings. I’d rather have books and dvds then the best vacation or choicest steak, though I might trade some for chocolate. Kat Hinkel (Mentee), tell us a little about yourself. I love stories in all forms. I write (novels and songs), read copiously, seek out immersive theater, and host elaborately themed parties. Some of my other interests include entrepreneurship, the internet of things, and Old Fashioneds. I live in Philadelphia, but in my dreams I often live in London. Alivya Leighton (Mentee), tell us a little about yourself. I am a Midwest writer in my early thirties. I teach creative writing, literature, and composition to undergrads, but I’m taking a year to myself to dedicate my time to writing. Follow me on Twitter! Michelle,  why did you decide to participate in Pitch Wars? I love contests and giving back to other writers. Plus, let’s be honest, it’s fun! It’s fun to interact on twitter and be part of something so huge. I’ve met so many new friends with the other mentors and the writers. Who wouldn’t want to share their knowledge and interact with the writer community! Kat, why did you decide to participate in Pitch Wars?     I finally made the commitment to put my work out there, and I decided that Pitch Wars would be an incredible way to support my goal of publishing. Simply connecting with others who are on the same path is one aspect of the contest, and getting the insight and assistance of an experienced author is another. It’s similar to a novel, really. You need both the wise mentor and your allies, ultimately, to achieve your goals. Alivya, why did you decide to participate in Pitch Wars?   There comes a time when the tinkering needs to come to an end. It’s time for the next step. Michelle, what are you most excited for?...

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