PW #204: Middle Grade Historical Fantasy: AN IMPOSSIBLE MAGIC

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor Name: Juliana Brandt
Mentee Name: Lacee Little
Category/Genre: Middle Grade Historical Fantasy
Word Count: 62,000


Already an expert at manipulating illusions, 13-year-old Verity Ravenwood helps her father’s blackmarket business by stealing a book of impossible spells for a notorious outlaw. But when the book gets stolen from her, she must track it down before the outlaw makes her entire family pay.


When Verity Ravenwood pressed her palm against the oak door, it rippled like an aspen leaf in the wind. A harder push and the door disappeared completely, turning back into the white plaster of a wall. She smiled faintly. No one went to the trouble of creating an illusion unless it was a distraction.

Verity leaned closer to the wall, but no magic remained on its surface. She crouched, nudging the woven rug out of the way, and ran her hand along the floorboards. At first all her fingers disturbed was dust, a constant companion thanks to the refining smelters dotting Denver’s skyline. However, when she pushed against the closest floorboard, it shimmered and turned into a five-foot square of metal with a brass ring in the middle. A trap door.

“Good job, Ver,” a voice whispered behind her.

She almost jumped, but caught herself before her feet left the ground. Her older brother, Garrett, stood a hairbreadth away.

“Did you have to sneak up on me?” Verity demanded.

He shrugged. Their father might joke Verity was the cat burglar of the family, but Garrett was the most cat-like. Although they shared the same green eyes, his were brighter, as if he could see in the dark. His black hair even lay against his head like a cat’s well-groomed fur, while Verity’s never lay anywhere.

“You should go first.” Garrett leaned over the door, but didn’t touch it. “There might be traps.”


Author: Heather Cashman

With a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry, the lab reports always lacked the fantastical element Heather's imagination demands. Hypotheses turned into taglines and novels, so she's going back to college for a Creative Writing degree. Her novels range from Epic Fantasy to Contemporary Speculative Fiction, she dabbles in picture books, and is currently seeking representation. ~Member SCBWI

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  1. What a fantastic first page! Please send the full manuscript (as well as a synopsis if you have one) to with “Pitch Wars: [YOUR TITLE]” as the subject line. Please also include your query in the body of the email. I look forward to reading!

    -Lauren Spieller, TriadaUS

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  2. I love this! Please send it as a Microsoft word document with “Pitch Wars manuscript” in the subject line, including your query letter in the first page of the document. Suzie at newleafliterary dot com.

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  3. Would love to see the full! Can you please send the full ms, along with the query + 10 pages pasted in the body of the email, with subject line: PITCH WARS + Title.

    Thank you! 🙂 So excited!

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  4. *grabby hands* Give it to meeee! Full please :D. Also query and synopsis.

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  5. I’d love to have a look! Please send the full along for my review. A Word attachment is most preferable if possible. Thanks!

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  6. Oh, yes please! I’d love to see the full manuscript. Please send it along to, along with the query letter and synopsis, and include “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. Thanks!

    Caitlin McDonald
    Donald Maass Literary Agency

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  7. I’d love to take a look at the full manuscript. Please send it as a word attachment to querycaitie (at) lizadawson (dot) com with your query in the email, with the PitchWars request in the subject.


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  8. I’d love to take a look! Please email the first 50 pp to as a double-spaced .doc to Please put the title and PitchWars in the subject. Thank you!

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  9. Hi Lacee,

    WOW – this looks amazing. I’d love to read more! Could you send the first 50 pages to Make sure to include Pitch Wars in the subject line!

    All the best,
    Brianne Johnson

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  10. I’d like to see more! Please send a query and the first 50 pages as a Word attachment to and please put “Pitch Wars – Stefanie Lieberman” in the subject line. Thank you!

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  11. Hi, Lacee—I would love to see more of this. Please send the full manuscript as a Word doc or PDF to, and be sure to include “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. Please also include your query in the body of the email.

    Thank you!

    Melissa Nasson
    Rubin Pfeffer Content

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  12. I would love to see more of this! Please send a query (in the body of the email) plus the first 50 pages as a Word doc attachment to, and make sure to put “Pitch Wars Request” and the title in the subject line.

    Looking forward to reading!

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  13. Hi Lacee–This first page looks great, and it sounds perfect for me! Please send the full manuscript and a synopsis as Word doc attachments to Thanks!

    Roseanne Wells
    The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency

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  14. This sounds excellent! I’d love to keep reading. Please send the full manuscript attached as a Word document to with “Pitch Wars – Pete Knapp” in the subject. Looking forward to reading! – Pete Knapp

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  15. I really enjoyed these opening pages and would love to take a look at the full manuscript. Please feel free to send it along as a word document to andrea [at] with “PitchWars Requested Manuscript” in the subject line. Thanks! I’m looking forward to reading.
    Andrea Somberg
    Harvey Klinger Inc.

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