Pitch Wars Team Interview with Steph Mignon and her mentor,  Laura Heffernan
Aug31

Pitch Wars Team Interview with Steph Mignon and her mentor, Laura Heffernan

  Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams. And now, we have . . . Steph Mignon – Mentee Twitter | Website Laura Heffernan – Mentor Twitter | Website   Steph: Why did you choose Laura? I chose Laura because I loved the premise of her book, America’s Next Reality Star. I’m obsessed with unscripted television and all of the fabulous hair and make-up that come with it. Laura’s book is the kind I like to read and hope to write – stories that involve women trying to figure out their lives, even if doing so lands them on national television. When I was researching mentors, I immediately noticed how engaged Laura is on Twitter about everything from the writing community to chocolate. She’s clever. She’s quick. She’s pretty freaking entertaining. She seems like a nice person too. Laura: Why did you choose Steph’s manuscript? Because it’s freaking amazing! When I read the query, all I could think was “please let the pages be good.” Then I fell hard for the voice on page one. When I asked for the full, I just kept refreshing my inbox. Once I got it, I was afraid to read it in case I didn’t love the whole thing. But then, when I started reading other manuscripts, my mind kept wandering to this one. I kept putting other entries aside to make notes. Not because those manuscripts weren’t good – they were – but because Steph’s writing grabbed me hard and wouldn’t let go. More importantly, as I was reading, I found myself with a very clear picture of how to take this manuscript to the next level. GHOSTS OF RODEO DRIVE has a similar tone to my book, and I know I can help Steph make it really shine. Plus, I really like her. And, she was actually ON a reality show, so it’s like we were destined to work together. Steph: Summarize your book in three words. Gold digger seeking. Laura: Summarize Steph’s book in three words. Heart of gold Steph: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? I like the sweet smell of a barn in the morning, Raisinettes mixed in my popcorn, and kids who go to bed by 7 PM (one can dream). I hold a hardly used law degree because someone said lawyers get to write, I’ve taken several masters level psychology courses, and I won...

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Pitch Wars Team Interview with  Erin Brambilla and her mentor, Jeanmarie Anaya
Aug31

Pitch Wars Team Interview with Erin Brambilla and her mentor, Jeanmarie Anaya

    Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams. And now, we have . . . Erin Brambilla – Mentee Twitter | Website | Instagram: erinbrambillawriter Jeanmarie Anaya – Mentor Twitter | Website   Erin: Why did you choose Jeanmarie? The first thing I found myself doing as I read through mentor bios was scrolling to find their reading list. I mean, books can totally recommend people, right? It was no different when I read Jeanmarie’s bio. I knew if I saw certain books/authors listed that she’d probably like my book too. (Jandy Nelson! Leila Sales! E. Lockhart! Yay!) Then I saw that we shared similar reading interests as kids and teens and that’s so fun. (Hey, Jeanmarie—would you say you were more of an Elizabeth or a Jessica?) Bonus? We’re both Ravenclaws! So imagine my excitement when she had contemporary first on her wish list with a whole paragraph about wanting to see humor. I thought, “Oooh, I think I could fit this bill.” Plus, she’s into board sports. My husband is into board sports. I am into watching people do stuff on boards while I lay lazily on the beach, or sit cozily in a lodge, reading a book… Jeanmarie: Why did you choose Erin’s manuscript? Erin’s voice is fantastic. Her writing style is introspective and thoughtful, but more importantly, HILARIOUS. She knows exactly when to bring on the humor, and exactly when to tone it down and let poignant emotions speak for themselves. I truly enjoyed reading all of my subs, but Erin’s was the one I immediately connected to from the very first sentence. Erin: Summarize your book in three words. Heart, heartache, and hope. Jeanmarie: Summarize Erin’s book in three words. Love, regret, and caramel-y. (You all obviously have no idea what that last word means, but I promise it’s 100% sexy and 100% something you want to read about.) Erin: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? I have super bendy elbows. Wait. I already used that fact in my high school yearbook (true story!). For real though, I am basically a professional volunteer. I have an ACHING desire to say yes when people ask for help. Need a committee chair? I’m your gal. Except not right now. Right now I have edits to do. But later. Bake sale. I’m totally there. As for my MS: it’s epistolary. And I...

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Pitch Wars Team Interview with Nikki Roberti and Katie O’Shea
Aug31

Pitch Wars Team Interview with Nikki Roberti and Katie O’Shea

  Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams. And now, we have . . . Katie O’Shea – Mentee Twitter | Blog | YouTube | Facebook Nikki Roberti – Mentor  Twitter | Website | YouTube   Katie: Why did you choose Nikki? I submitted to Nikki last year with a different MS so I’ve known how awesome she is for awhile now. This year I thought she would be a great fit for my new MS and it matched up with her wish list. I could also tell from Twitter and the live shows that Nikki and I would get along really well and it seemed like we had similar interests and tastes. Plus I had heard from so many people how amazing Nikki is. I’m so glad that she chose me to mentor and I can’t wait to work with her! Nikki: Why did you choose Katie’s manuscript? I love a good laugh, and Katie’s first chapter had me hooked from start to finish. Her characters were so funny and so developed early on–I couldn’t help but want to read more. I feel like lighthearted, funny YA is a rare find these days, so I was extra excited to get my hands on something so fun. Also, as I read, I was instantly having ideas and wanting to share things I’ve learned recently through my own revisions. It was that vision for it that made me decide Katie & her MS were “the one.” Katie: Summarize your book in three words. Funny summer love Nikki: Summarize Katie’s book in three words. All Good Feels Katie: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? I’m a lawyer by day and I had a penchant for starting to write new novels during law school finals time. I wrote three books during law school, including the first draft of my Pitch Wars book THOSE SUMMER NIGHTS. My book is a sweet and funny YA Contemporary set in an Island town off the coast of Georgia during the summer. It’s a funny and relatable story about a boy who’s hopelessly in love with his best friend and trying in all the wrong ways to try to get her to realize how he really feels about her. This MS is a book of my heart and I wrote it for myself and for my best friend, Megan. A lot of...

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Magnetic Magic by Terry Catasús Jennings . . . Book Release and Giveaway!
Aug30

Magnetic Magic by Terry Catasús Jennings . . . Book Release and Giveaway!

  TITLE: Magnetic Magic AUTHOR: Terry Catasús Jennings ILLUSTRATOR: Andrea Gabriel PUBLISHER: Arbordale Publishing RELEASE DATE: August 30, 2016 Book Page  |  Author Interview  |  Teaching Activities Guide  |  Buy Magnetic Magic Dena loves using magnets to perform magic tricks for the kids at the pool. When Enrique arrives in town, he doesn’t like that Dena is fooling the others. He gives her a century-old treasure map and Dena uses her compass and tools to plot the location of the treasure. To her surprise, the treasure is not where it should be! What could cause her compass to lead her off course? When she discovers the answer, will Dena keep fooling the other kids with magic tricks or will she help them learn about magnetism and the earth’s shifting magnetic poles?   Terry Catasús Jennings, Author Author Website  |  Twitter Terry Catasús Jennings has won several prestigious children’s book awards, including NSTA-CBC Outstanding Science Trade Book, NSTA Recommended, and Bank Street Best Children’s Book of the Year. Magnetic Magic is her third book with Arbordale Publishing, following Gopher to the Rescue and Sounds of the Savanna. Her middle-grade book, The Women’s Liberation Movement, 1960-1990 was listed in the ALA’s Amelia Bloomer Project 2014-2015 List. Terry has been a contributor for the Smithsonian’s Science Education Center books. Her articles have appeared in The Washington Post, Long Island News Day, and Ranger Rick. Terry is an active member of The Children’s Book Guild of Washington, DC and SCBWI. She and her husband live in Northern Virginia. Visit her website at www.terrycjennings.com.   Andrea Gabriel, Illustrator Illustrator Website  Award-winning artist Andrea Gabriel has worked as a professional illustrator for the past fifteen years. In addition to Been There, Done That: Reading Animal Signs and Little Gray’s Great Migration for Arbordale, some of Andrea’s other illustrated works include Where Do I Sleep? and Eaglet’s World. Andrea is the author and illustrator of Wandering Woolly>and My Favorite Bear. Andrea lives in Bellingham, Washington with her family of two-and four-legged creatures.   Giveaway of one Hardback copy of Magnetic Magic, open until September 9th.   a Rafflecopter giveaway...

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Winners of the editing prizes from the Pitch Wars Mentors!
Aug25

Winners of the editing prizes from the Pitch Wars Mentors!

Today we have the winners of the editing prizes donated by some of our amazing Pitch Wars mentors. Thank you everyone for entering Pitch Wars and thank you to those who donated. We’re excited for next year and all the wonderful changes coming next year. A few things first. We have some amazing giveaways for those of you who didn’t make it into the mentoring round. Here they are … Cornerstones Literary Consultancy is offering an amazing giveaway and you can check it out here. You don’t want to miss this one! Cornerstones UK | Cornerstones US | Twitter | Blog   Author Accelerator is offering a giveaway and you can check what they are offering here. It’s amazing so you want to enter! Author Accelerator Website We had some of our wonderful mentors donate editing prizes for everyone who entered and donated to Pitch Wars.  I will draw winners soon. But if you wanted to check out what the prizes were, go to this post here. ProWritingAid For everyone who entered Pitch Wars but didn’t get a mentee spot, they’re giving a discount of 25% off the Premium version. Use voucher code PITCHWARS. If you don’t want to purchase it, the online editor is pretty comprehensive and completely free to use. Check it out here … ProWritingAid     And here are the editing prize winners …   Chimera Editing From Jami Nord: a Big Picture critique. WINNER: Elizabeth Leis Newman And Chimera Editing is offering a $30 off a Big Picture critique for anyone entering Pitch Wars.   From Rebecca Sky (website): A brand consultation and logo package. Winner: Carlson Heath   Raulerson Editorial From Natasha Raulerson: A query and first three chapter critique of a YA, NA, or Adult manuscript edit. WINNER: Meagan Dallner   From Freelance Editor (website),  Joy McCullough: A query and three chapters of MG or YA manuscript edit. WINNER: John Berkowitz & Melissa Berkowitz     Wild Things Editing from editors … From Kim Graff: A query, 1-to-2 page synopsis, and first 2,500 words edit.WINNER: Megan McDonnell From Amy Trueblood: A query, 1-to-2 page synopsis, and first 2,500 words edit. WINNER: Angela Larson From Megan Lally: A query, 1-to-2 page synopsis, and first 2,500 words edit. WINNER: Madison Lessard   From Cat Scully with Cornerstones Literary Consultancy US: A query, synopsis, and three chapters edit. WINNER: Leila Oicles   Jen Malone edits From Jen Malone: A query and first 20 pages of manuscript edit. WINNER: Kristi Mahoney   Kate Foster Professional Editing Services From Kate Foster: A three chapter edit. WINNER: Lisa M. Gold   Copper Lantern Studio Editorial Services From Kit Frick: A query letter and...

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FAITHFUL by Pitch Wars mentor Michelle Hauck … cover reveal and giveaway!
Aug25

FAITHFUL by Pitch Wars mentor Michelle Hauck … cover reveal and giveaway!

Today Michelle Hauck and Rockstar Book Tours are revealing the cover for FAITHFUL, book two in the Birth of Saints series which releases November 15, 2016! Check out the gorgeous cover and enter to win a SIGNED copy of book 1 GRUDGING!   On to the reveal! Title: FAITHFUL (Birth of Saints #2) Author: Michelle Hauck Pub. Date: November 15, 2016 Publisher: Harper Voyager Impulse Formats: eBook ISBN: 9780062447173 Find it: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Goodreads Following Grudging–and with a mix of Terry Goodkind and Bernard Cornwall–religion, witchcraft, and chivalry war in Faithful, the exciting next chapter in Michelle Hauck’s Birth of Saints series! A world of Fear and death…and those trying to save it. Colina Hermosa has burned to the ground. The Northern invaders continue their assault on the ciudades-estados. Terror has taken hold, and those that should be allies betray each other in hopes of their own survival. As the realities of this devastating and unprovoked war settles in, what can they do to fight back? On a mission of hope, an unlikely group sets out to find a teacher for Claire, and a new weapon to use against the Northerners and their swelling army. What they find instead is an old woman. But she’s not a random crone—she’s Claire’s grandmother. She’s also a Woman of the Song, and her music is both strong and horrible. And while Claire has already seen the power of her own Song, she is scared of her inability to control it, having seen how her magic has brought evil to the world, killing without reason or remorse. To preserve a life of honor and light, Ramiro and Claire will need to convince the old woman to teach them a way so that the power of the Song can be used for good. Otherwise, they’ll just be destroyers themselves, no better than the Northerners and their false god, Dal. With the annihilation their enemy has planned, though, they may not have a choice. A tale of fear and tragedy, hope and redemption, Faithful is the harrowing second entry in the Birth of Saints trilogy.   Exclusive Excerpt!   Not for the first time, Claire reconsidered her decision to stay when Ramiro had asked her. She’d lingered out of curiosity—and truthfully because it felt good to be needed—but they didn’t need her now with the Northern army defeated. She could return to the swamp and away from so many people. Despite her hopes of friends and community, she felt awkward here. Reason said she’d get used to their ways, but being around so many folk made her want to hide. Everything pressed down. The walls of the tent shrunk, pinning her in, and smothering her....

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Pitch Wars … The Mentors’ Picks!!
Aug24

Pitch Wars … The Mentors’ Picks!!

SaveW   After weeks of reading and obsessing over all the fabulous entries, our amazing mentors have chosen their mentees! Please know that mentors are not required to send feedback to those who submitted to them. Our mentors have their own books to write, mentees to mentor, jobs, and family life.  Some will have the time to send feedback and some will not. Don’t pester mentors for feedback in their emails, their sites, or social media. If you get feedback, it’s a bonus. A few things first. We have some amazing giveaways for those of you who didn’t make it into the mentoring round. Here they are … Cornerstones Literary Consultancy is offering an amazing giveaway and you can check it out here. You don’t want to miss this one! Cornerstones UK | Cornerstones US | Twitter | Blog   Author Accelerator is offering a giveaway and you can check what they are offering here. It’s amazing so you want to enter! Author Accelerator Website We had some of our wonderful mentors donate editing prizes for everyone who entered and donated to Pitch Wars.  I will draw winners soon. But if you wanted to check out what the prizes were, go to this post here. ProWritingAid will be sending a free 6 months subscription to all the 2016 mentees. Heather Cashman uses this program and she swears by it! For everyone who entered Pitch Wars but didn’t get a mentee spot, they’re giving a discount of 25% off the Premium version. Use voucher code PITCHWARS. If you don’t want to purchase it, the online editor is pretty comprehensive and completely free to use. Check it out here … ProWritingAid And here are the picks … The scavenger hunt mentee drawing winners are … Middle Grade winner with mentor Shanna Rogers: THE WILDCATS by Katharine Manning Young Adult winner with Heather Cashman and me (Brenda Drake) as co-mentors: NOT HER STORY by Kara McDowell Adult and New Adult winner with mentor E.L. Wicker: SIGHT OF HAND by Leigh Stanfield You will see that some mentors have more than one mentee. We drew nine names for wild card picks for mentors who wanted an extra mentee. But then it just wasn’t enough and we just drew three more. So here are three extra wild card winners and their mentee picks … Middle Grade Wild Card: Ellie Terry will mentor BREATHING UNDERWATER by Sarah Allen Young Adult Wild Card: Destiny Vandeput will mentor THEN BEGGARS WOULD RIDE by Tracie Martin Adult Wild Card: Tamara Mataya will mentor LIES UNDERCOVER by KK Hendin Middle Grade Picks … Adult and New Adult picks …...

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Editorial Giveaway by Cornerstones Literary Consultancy!
Aug24

Editorial Giveaway by Cornerstones Literary Consultancy!

  Cornerstones Literary Consultancy Giveaway! Cornerstones UK | Cornerstones US | Twitter | Blog   For those of you who don’t become a Pitch Wars mentee, we have a giveaway from Cornerstones Literary Consultancy. Cornerstones, the No. 1 literary consultancy in the UK, has expanded into the US. They provide editorial feedback, scout for agents, and have launched many writers over the years: Celia Bryce, Lezanne Clannachan, Sarwat Chadda, Liz Kessler, Ava McCarthy, Jane Yardley, Lezanne Clannachan, and Kate Glanville to name a few. Three lucky people will win one hour each of free editing with Michele Rubin, Managing Editor at Cornerstones Literary Consultancy, US. ($1000 worth of editorial services.) Only Pitch Wars 2016 participants will be allowed to win the contest. The contact information entered into this form will be given to Cornerstones so that Michele can contact you to set up your free hour of editing. To join the drawing, enter the Rafflecopter below.   Michele Rubin is the new Managing Editor at Cornerstones U.S.She was a Senior Executive Literary Agent at Writers House for 25 years (representing almost everything under the sun from upmarket fiction to memoir to middle grade, as well as The Estate of Martin Luther King), and left agenting in 2013 to work full-time as a freelance editor, writer, ghostwriter, and conductor of writing workshops. Her areas of expertise and interest are broad; she is open to all genres. She is thrilled to be working with Cornerstones and will be working away to establish the company in the U.S.         Only those who entered Pitch Wars and weren’t picked by a mentor can enter the contest. Enter now! a Rafflecopter giveaway Save Save Save Save Save...

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Giveaways by Author Accelerator!
Aug24

Giveaways by Author Accelerator!

We’re excited to offer some amazing editorial prizes from the fabulous people at Author Accelerator. Three writers who entered Pitch Wars and weren’t chosen by a mentor will win a full manuscript evaluation. Manuscript evaluations give writers a comprehensive summary of the strengths and weaknesses of their story and a 15-point checklist of the major elements of their complete manuscript. A $399 value. And one lucky writer who entered Pitch Wars and wasn’t chosen by a mentor will receive a full manuscript edit. Manuscript edits give writers a full developmental edit on their manuscripts, with on-the-page feedback and a comprehensive summary strengths/weaknesses. A $1500 value. What do you have to do for a chance to win? Simply enter the Rafflecopter below! Check out Author Accelerator for more information about their services … Author Accelerator Website Thank you for the giveaway Pitch Wars mentor, Jennie Nash! Private book coach: jennienash.com Chief Creative Officer: authoraccelerator.com   Enter the Rafflecopter now! a Rafflecopter...

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Pitch Wars LIVE Show TONIGHT!
Aug24

Pitch Wars LIVE Show TONIGHT!

The wait is almost over. Tomorrow, Pitch Wars mentees will be announced. But tonight at 7 p.m. EDT, we celebrate the long process of Pitch Wars by getting some amazing mentors together and chatting! We’ll be discussing the slush and how we picked our mentees, answering some questions, and so much more! So come out and join us for this two-hour Pitch-stravaganza! Ask questions via the tag #askmentor. You won’t want to miss it! Watch it on Youtube | Watch it in Google...

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Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight and Giveaway with Wade Albert White!
Aug24

Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight and Giveaway with Wade Albert White!

  Wade Albert White Website | Twitter | Goodreads  | Hachette Wade hails from Nova Scotia, land of wild blueberries and Duck Tolling Retrievers. He teaches part time, dabbles in animation, and spends the rest of his time as a stay-at-home dad. It is also possible he has set a new record as the slowest 10K runner. Ever. He owns one pretend cat and one real one, and they get along fabulously.   The Adventurer’s Guide to Successful Escapes Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Barnes & Noble | Indigo   A thrilling debut novel where fantasy and science fiction meet, dragons aren’t as innocent as they look (which is to say, not innocent at all), and nothing is quite what it seems. Anne has spent most of her thirteen years dreaming of the day she and her best friend Penelope will finally leave Saint Lupin’s Institute for Perpetually Wicked and Hideously Unattractive Children. When the big day arrives, a series of very curious happenings lead to Anne being charged with an epic quest. Anne, Penelope, and new adventuring partner Hiro have only days to travel to strange new locales, solve myriad riddles, and triumph over monstrous foes–or face the horrible consequences. Packed with action, humor, and endless heart, this debut novel marks the first volume in an irresistible and original fantasy series. Releases September 13, 2016   Giveaway!   Winner receives one signed hardcover of The Adventurer’s Guide to Successful Escapes, personalized if desired (will ship internationally in September once the book is released). Make a comment to enter. After 24 hours, Wade will contact the winner by email. (Winner chosen using random.org via the comments.)...

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Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight with Tobie Easton!
Aug23

Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight with Tobie Easton!

Tobie Easton Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads Tobie Easton was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, where she’s grown from a little girl who dreamed about magic to a twenty-something who writes about it.  A summa cum laude graduate of the University of Southern California, Tobie hosts book clubs for tweens and teens (so she’s lucky enough to spend her days gabbing about books). She and her very kissable husband enjoy traveling the globe and fostering packs of rescue puppies. Tobie loves chocolate chip cookies and Oxford commas. Tobie is a member of SCBWI and YARWA, the Young Adult chapter of RWA. Emerge Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Chapters | The Book Depository Lia Nautilus may be a Mermaid but she’s never lived in the ocean. War has ravaged the seven seas ever since the infamous Little Mermaid unleashed a curse that stripped Mer of their immortality. Lia has grown up in a secret community of land-dwelling Mer hidden among Malibu’s seaside mansions. Her biggest problems are surviving P.E. and keeping her feelings for Clay Ericson in check. Sure, he’s gorgeous in that cocky, leather jacket sort of way and makes her feel like there’s a school of fish swimming in her stomach, but getting involved with a human could put Lia’s entire community at risk. So it’s for the best that he’s dating that new girl, right? That is, until Lia finds out she isn’t the only one at school keeping a potentially deadly secret. And this new girl? Her eyes are dead set on Clay, who doesn’t realize the danger he’s in. If Lia hopes to save him, she’ll have to get closer to Clay. Lia’s parents would totally flip if they found out she was falling for a human boy, but the more time she spends with him, the harder it is for her to deny her feelings. After making a horrible mistake, Lia will risk everything to stop Clay from falling in love with the wrong girl.  Blurbs . . . “This is a fresh and exciting new story that addresses realistic themes set in a fantastical world. Teens will be able to connect with Lia and be immersed in Easton’s world-building.”–School Library Journal “We love this book about the descendants of The Little Mermaid! EMERGE has romance, humor, adventure and an amazing setting among the mansions of Malibu!”–Justine Magazine “Romance, fantastical lore, and adventure–the most fun I’ve had reading in a long time!” –Wendy Higgins, USA Today and NYT bestselling author of the Sweet Evil series “Clever, well-written and insanely unique, EMERGE brings us deep into the lives of mermaids, where coming of age has never...

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