Pitch Wars 2016 Success Interview with Kit Rosewater and her mentors, Amanda Rawson Hill, Jessica Vitalis, and Cindy Baldwin
Dec08

Pitch Wars 2016 Success Interview with Kit Rosewater and her mentors, Amanda Rawson Hill, Jessica Vitalis, and Cindy Baldwin

Our favorite part of hosting pitch contests around here is hearing about successes. Today we celebrate Kit Rosewater and her Pitch Wars mentors Amanda Rawson Hill, Jessica Vitalis, and Cindy Baldwin! Kit recently signed with Susan Hawk of The Bent Agency, and we’re so over-the-moon excited for yer. So please join me in congratulating Kit, Amanda, Jessica, and Cindy as they share with us their awesome Pitch Wars success story. Kit, what was it about Jessica, Amanda, & Cindy that made you choose to send them a Pitch Wars application?  I was pretty thorough when it came to researching the Pitch Wars mentors. I wrote down every single one of the MG mentors or mentor teams, read through their blogs on the blog hop, and took copious notes on wish lists, writing backgrounds, and personalities. From the start I loved Cindy, Amanda, and Jessica’s personalities over Twitter. We bantered and bonded and I already wanted to send my query their way. But their blogs completely sealed the deal for me. On Jessica’s blog, I was incredibly impressed with her past experience as a mentor, and how hard of a worker she was. Her final statement about turning a manuscript into a book on the shelf felt like a call to action that I needed to answer. For Cindy and Amanda, their wish list told me we were a match made in heaven. Our tastes lined up so perfectly, and I had been paying close attention to their writing tip threads and blog posts throughout the summer. Those gals knew how to write and how to share those skills with others. I knew they would be able to help guide me through revisions. What was it about Kit’s manuscript, Doppelganger, that hooked you? Amanda: Kit really has a way with words. They just flow and wrap you up and draw you in. But beyond that, she had this character that I fell in love with. And I fell in love with the blots on the MC’s skin from her Vtiligo. There was so much poential. She just needed some direction. Cindy: Kit’s prose is lyrical and immersive in such an unusual way; she has an incredible gift for metaphors that make you want to read certain lines over and over. I also loved the uniqueness of the retelling—Kit managed to take a fairly common trope (mistaken identity) and give it such an interesting, magical twist. Jessica: The premise was unique and the writing was gorgeous. Plus, I knew from Kit’s social media presence that she’d be wonderful to work with (I was right). Kit, tell us about the revision process for Pitch Wars?  This is my favorite part of the...

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Holiday Post and Giveaway with Pitch Wars Mentor, Dan Koboldt
Dec08

Holiday Post and Giveaway with Pitch Wars Mentor, Dan Koboldt

As 2016 draws to a close, I have to admit that it changed my life in some important ways. I saw my debut novel, The Rogue Retrieval, published by Harper Voyager. I split with my first literary agent. I got a 2-book offer from my editor, and found a new literary agent. I caught the biggest fish of my life. And I moved with my wife, kids, and dog to another state to take a new job. These were all major events for me and my family. Things we’ll never forget. When Brenda asked me to do a post on a special moment this year, one stood out. In mid-March, I had my first book event and author signing at a local bookshop in St. Louis. It took place on a Wednesday evening, in the special events room in Left Bank Books. My wife and her parents drove me there after a quick dinner. They noticed (and were amused by) a rare sight: Dan Koboldt looking very nervous. Author Events Are Terrifying Here’s the thing: I’m a relatively [over] confident person, and a comfortable public speaker. Hazards of the day job, I suppose. When you’ve presented your research to a packed room of 500 fellow scientists — a couple of whom are Nobel prize winners — a small author event shouldn’t faze you. The only problem was, it did faze me. I had no idea what to expect. Every author daydreams about sell-out crowds with lines around the corner, but I knew that wasn’t realistic. For a new author, equally if not more likely that no one would show at all. We had the room decorated in a Vegas casino theme. We had a stack of my books at the store’s front counter. We also had about five minutes until the event started, but every chair was empty. It was the perfect setting for an embarrassing public disaster. I thought I’d done a reasonable job of spreading word about the event, but come to think of it, no one made a firm commitment. It got to that point where I started avoiding eye contact with the bookstore staff. My First True Fans I’d just done the math on how much I’d have to shell out to buy the stack of my own books — it seemed like the right thing to do — when a woman inadvertently wandered into the event room and took a seat. I thought maybe she was lost, or just taking a break. Turns out, she worked with my cousin, who’d invited her to come to the event (and arrived a minute later). Then a friend...

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