PW #137: Adult Paranormal Romance (#ownvoices): RIVEN

Manuscript Status: 2 weeks delivery Mentors: Jami Nord and KT Hanna Mentee: Hetal Avanee Title: RIVEN Category/Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance (#ownvoices) Word Count: 93,000 Pitch: Bent on revenge, Asha discovers the little sister she thought dead a prisoner of the man she’s sworn to destroy. Her only hope lies in trusting an irresistible man with shadowy goals of his own, even at the risk of her heart. Excerpt: A thick fingered bouncer passed my gold embellished invitation bearing the name Ashwariya Singh into a hostess’s perfectly manicured hands. I adopted the mien of a privileged socialite with chin tilted up, hip thrust, despite the lace and sequined confection squeezing the air from my lungs. She raked a dispassionate gaze over the Louboutin’s killing my toes, around to the fist-sized fire opal caught in a net of silver and gold threads against the open back of my dress. Nine years of blending fake personalities, false identities – the new kid, the orphan, the outsider, the genius, the rich-bitch–to return to this country where my life had first gone wrong. I rubbed my arm, as if chills wracked me on this clear, seventy-six degree Mumbai evening. But no, the night was perfect to combat my 96.6 degree body temperature. It was to soothe the animal inside me before short golden scales, hard as diamonds, blanketed my skin and gave me away before I started. My parents had called the dragon shaped stain on my skin a Vahana’s mark: a symbol of my animal spirit, my totem, gifted upon me from the goddess Kali. The dragon was supposed to ground me, center me, but spent too much time being a pain in my ass to actually do either of those things.  Please, I thought, give me a break. I heard enough of your grumbling on the nonstop from New York to Mumbai. Just a few more moments and we’ll walk through the gates of hell....

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PW #138: Adult Contemporary Fantasy: SIGHT OF HAND

Manuscript Status: Finished Mentor Name: E.L. Wicker Mentee Name: Leigh Stanfield Title: SIGHT OF HAND Category/Genre: Adult Contemporary Fantasy Word Count: 81,000 Pitch:  Deaf street magician Nick Hazard goes from struggling performer to suspected terrorist when a job gone spectacularly wrong lands him in Seattle’s City Hall with a ticking bomb. He escapes, but with cops, crooks, and a government agency full of super humans breathing down his neck, Nick will have to use his street smarts and preternatural eyesight to find the real bomber—preferably before the bomber finds him. Excerpt: Years ago, if somebody had asked why I’d be running through a farmers market with two pissed off dopeheads on my heels, I would’ve asked if they had the right guy. Yet, there I was. And there they were. My morning had definitely taken a turn for the worst. Never take the act off the street corner, Nick. I knew the rule. It was my rule, and I had it for a reason. As a street magician, I spent my days practicing sleight-of-hand for pocket change. It was tempting to use those skills for evil—to get flush fast off back-alley card games and lifted wallets. But the kind of people running sketchy poker games on milk crates behind the liquor store weren’t the kind of people who appreciated a little good-natured trickery. After that one guy knifed me in the ribs last summer, I figured I’d learned my lesson. Apparently not. Angry faces scowled and flapped their mouths at me as I shoved my way through the crowded market. I couldn’t hear their voices, but their stink-eyes spoke volumes. The people packed themselves into the aisles shoulder-to-shoulder, like sardines. If sardines went to brunch and swore off gluten. I wasn’t one to judge—live and let yogalati, if that made them happy—but I swore I smelled mimosas as I ducked past a woman in leggings and a puffy vest....

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PW #139: Adult/SciFi Thriller: #FEEDWAR

Manuscript Status: Finished Mentor: Dan Malossi Mentee: Rachelle Harp Title: #FEEDWAR Category/Genre: Adult/SciFi Thriller Word Count: 80K Pitch: Data sniper Reef Gibson and her crew of Feeders are feuding for control of FeedTower—the world’s largest social network. Reef doesn’t care: her mother is dying. When Reef discovers a life-saving drug, the lone seller is an old flame from a rival crew. And he wants FeedTower in return. But so does Reef’s vicious boss. Let the #FeedWar begin. Excerpt: The sizzle of a neon sign whispers above my head. I pop an e-cig between my lips, scan the glitzy men and women filtering through FeedTower’s fenced-in courtyard. A sleeve of cool air wraps me. It’s October and winter’s already waking up. I used to shudder when that happened. Not anymore. The scraper used to be called the “Empire State Building,” a place where tourists forked over an ass-wad of cash to hike to the top for their city-view fixes. Or they’d buy some trinket to toss in a drawer and forget. AdTap took over and bulldozed the buildings around it. Lit the thing up like a Christmas tree, turned it into a tower of useless shit streaming 24-7. People never seem to get enough of it. Chats. Updates. Posts. Pictures. The Feed. At least the part most people know about. Nate Rigby emerges from the gala and struts across the sidewalk, his charcoal gray silk suit shimmering as he passes under the FeedTower lights. With a face like a movie star and a smooth smile, it’s easy to see why people like him—Councilman Rigby, A Vote for the Future. His shoulders are pulled back and he walks tall like he’s got a stick up his ass. Could be arranged, but I’ve got better plans for him tonight. And he won’t see it coming. I’m that good....

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Get Ready for the Pitch Wars 2016 Agent Showcase starting tomorrow!
Nov02

Get Ready for the Pitch Wars 2016 Agent Showcase starting tomorrow!

  Tomorrow the Pitch Wars agent showcase goes live! Our fabulous mentees have worked tirelessly with their mentors to get their pitches and manuscripts in tip-top shape for our agents. We’re so excited to share them with you. Please stop by to read all the amazing entries. Thank you to the Pitch Wars team, Heather Cashman, Nikki Roberti, and Joy McCullough, working hard behind the scenes with me to bring this years showcase together! And welcome the new member of our team, Monica Hoffman! Check out their bios on the sidebar and friend or follow them on their social media accounts. Check out this post here and here to read about all our wonderful agents participating in Pitch Wars 2016! Here’s the showcase schedule … November 3 – 9: Agent Showcase November 3: Adult and New Adult entries go up on my blog November 4: MG entries go up on my blog November 5: YA entries go up on my blog November 9: Last day of Agent Showcase December 1: #PitMad Twitter Pitch Party Congratulations Pitch Wars Class of 2016, you’ve graduated!!!! And now it’s time to dance!!!!!  ...

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Pitch Wars Interview with Jennieke Cohen and her mentor, Tobie Easton
Nov02

Pitch Wars Interview with Jennieke Cohen and her mentor, Tobie Easton

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 . . .  Jennieke Cohen – Mentee Twitter | Website Tobie Easton – Mentor Twitter | Website Jennieke: Why did you choose Tobie? I was really hoping Tobie would pick my manuscript! On Tobie’s wish list, she mentioned some novels that I really love (Jessica Day George’s Princess of the Midnight Ball series and Tasha Alexander’s Lady Emily mysteries), in addition to saying she loved historical fiction and romance, Jane Austen, Oscar Wilde, and Downton Abbey, all of which have influenced my writing in general and Dangerous Alliance in particular. Oh, and she also wanted beautiful gowns, gardens, and kissing, which again, are all major elements of my manuscript (and a well-lived life, in my humble opinion)! The fact that she described herself as a positive person but honest in her critiques also sounded right up my alley. In short, she sounded like the perfect mentor and I feel so lucky that she chose my manuscript! Tobie: Why did you choose Jennieke? First of all, I was instantly drawn in by the premise of Dangerous Alliance. I loved the idea of a YA Downton Abbey, and the angle of the protagonist’s sister dealing with domestic abuse during the 19th century really felt fresh because I read a lot of historical, and it was something I hadn’t seen before. I was excited to read more about the sister relationship as well as the romantic plot line with the main character, Lady Victoria. When I started reading the pages, I loved the witty voice and that Victoria really cared about the estate. Often we read about members of the British aristocracy and their estates, but they don’t really seem to care about the running of those estates. The fact that Vicky does care made me really want to get to know her. Out of all the partials I requested during Pitch Wars Dangerous Alliance was the one I couldn’t stop thinking about during the entire selection process. It wouldn’t let go and it still hasn’t. Jennieke: Summarize your book in three words. Ballrooms, Intrigue, Love Tobie: Summarize Jennieke’s book in three words. Pitch Wars Winner #KiddingNotKidding Family, Romance, Gardens Jennieke: Tell us something about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? I’ve been a classic film lover since I was a kid, which partially explains my Master of Professional Writing degree from USC...

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Pitch Wars Interview with Ariane Felix and her mentors, Cat Scully and Kim Graff
Nov02

Pitch Wars Interview with Ariane Felix and her mentors, Cat Scully and Kim Graff

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 . . .  Ariane Felix – Mentee Twitter | Website   Cat Scully – Mentor Twitter | Website Kim Graff – Mentor Twitter | Website   Ariane: Why did you choose Cat and Kim? Their blog posts resonated with me. They love the same weird, creepy stuff I love, and I felt they would get me. And obviously I think they’re awesome. Both of them are skilled editors, and I know I’m in great hands. It still feels surreal that they picked me. Cat and Kim: Why did you choose Ariane’s manuscript to mentor? Cat: I fell in love with this book as I was reading it. I found myself hopping between fulls while I read and I kept coming back to Blue Waters. I couldn’t get the voice out of my head and the way she used sweeping metaphors coupled with science fiction mystery. It reminded me a great deal of Donnie Darko and the Matrix, two films I adore. I also felt like I was the right mentor for the weakness of the books as the portions that needed help were my particular strengths as a mentor. Kim: The voice and writing was what drew me to Blue Waters. I was blown away by Ariane’s beautiful prose, and the twisted sci-fi horror element to it. I’d been craving sci-fi horror since I finished watching Stranger Things and Blue Waters really delivered. Ariane: Summarize your book in three words. Stars, meat, and duality. Cat and Kim: Summarize your mentee’s book in three words. Lavish, time rift, obsession Ariane: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? When I was a kid, my brother put me in bed every night and told me the stories of a game called StarCraft. It didn’t take long for me to start playing it, and my “Disney” princess is Kerrigan (pictures below). I grew up watching anime, making origamis, reading weird stuff, and obsessing about The Matrix (OBSESSING). All of these elements somehow translate into my book.       Cat and Kim: Tell us about yourselves. Something we might not already know. Cat: Neil Gaiman once asked me to help wash his black shirts. Kim: I watched my first horror movie when I was five, and have never looked back.   Check out Kim Graffs’ Short Story: Corrupt inside Horrors: Real, Imagined, and Deadly...

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