Pitch Wars Success Story with Kaitlin Hundscheid and her mentor, Ashley Martin
Jan04

Pitch Wars Success Story with Kaitlin Hundscheid and her mentor, Ashley Martin

Having our mentees land an agent or a publishing deal is one of the highlights of being part of Pitch Wars. We’re so excited for Kaitlin Hundscheid and her mentor, Ashley Martin. Kaitlin signed with Catherine Drayton of InkWell Management Literary Agency after Pitch Wars 2016, and we couldn’t be happier for her! Please, help me in congratulating Kaitlin and Ashley on their Pitch Wars Success. Kaitlin, what was it about Ashley that made you choose to send them a Pitch Wars application? Ashley’s wish list specifically asked for anything to do with classic children’s literature, and I knew that could be a swaying factor in whether someone liked my story about book characters coming to life in a library. And from stalking her twitter and blog, I could tell that we had very similar tastes in other areas and thought she seemed like a kindred spirit––and I was right! I couldn’t have asked for a better mentor for my story. Ashley, what was it about Kaitlin’s THE CURIOUS CURSE OF THE LONELY LIBRARY that hooked you? The book opens with the MC, Theodore, wandering through the grocery store, his nose in a book. As someone who often brought my books to the dinner table as a kid, I immediately felt a connection with this lovable bookworm. As I continued reading, I found everything I was hoping for: A vibrant, beautifully described setting, a cast of supporting characters I adored, and a connection to classic children’s literature that made me swoon. The moment one of my favorite literary characters of all time showed up, that was that. I knew this book was the one. Kaitlin, tell us about the revision process for Pitch Wars? After the OMG I WAS CHOSEN euphoria passed, I was left with the OMG WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO panic. After processing Ashley’s initial suggestions, I word vomited my reactions (mostly variations of “you’re so right”) and brainstormed ideas until the line edits came. From there it was a month of intense revisions, splicing, dicing, and murdering chapters as I sped up the pacing (9k words cut!) and strengthened character arcs. And, of course, lots of laborious polishing, marveling at how many times I could mention shadows in one scene. Ashley, tell us about your experience mentoring Kaitlin. It was a dream! Kaitlin and I connected immediately, forever bonded by a mutual love of books and tea (go #TeamEarlGrey!). She was eager to learn and didn’t hate me for suggesting some big changes (phew!). She really went above and beyond to dive deeper into her story, and she absolutely slayed her revisions. I couldn’t have asked for a...

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