A Pitch Wars Success Story with Rachel Griffin and her mentor Heather Ezell
Jan30

A Pitch Wars Success Story with Rachel Griffin and her mentor Heather Ezell

  When our mentees land an agent or a publishing deal, it’s one of the highlights of being part of Pitch Wars. We’re so excited for Rachel Griffin and her mentor, Heather Ezell. Rachel signed with Melissa Sarver White of Folio Literary Management after Pitch Wars 2016, and we couldn’t be happier for her! Please, help me in congratulating Rachel and Heather on their Pitch Wars Success!   Rachel, what was it about Heather that made you choose to send her a Pitch Wars application? Heather was so approachable online, and when I read her mentor bio, I was sold. My initial reaction after reading Heather’s bio was, “I really want to be friends with this person!” It also didn’t hurt that the elements she was looking for lined up well with my manuscript. One of the things I love about Heather is that she’s so genuine, and that came through well before we started working together for Pitch Wars. Heather, what was it about Rachel’s SHADOWS CAST BY DREAMS that hooked you? Oh, it was absolutely Rachel’s premise. She basically had me at hello. A car crash + brain tumor leading a girl and a boy to fall in love in a dream? Yes, please. I’ve always been so compelled by dream stories and Rachel had clearly twisted the norm. Her query snagged me quick with what it promised and I knew I needed to read her manuscript ASAP. Rachel, tell us about the revision process for Pitch Wars? It was intense! My first order of business was to rewrite my manuscript from third person past to first person present, then dive into everything else. It ended up being a massive rewrite, and Heather was such a dream to work with. I entered Pitch Wars because I felt that something was missing from my manuscript, but I didn’t know what – Heather helped me find the things that were missing. On top of providing amazing feedback, she was so encouraging throughout the entire process. Not to mention she read my manuscript THREE times in less than two months. My manuscript got stronger with each revision, and so did my writing. And on top of everything, I made a wonderful friend. Heather, tell us about your experience mentoring Rachel. It was an absolute delight. This was my first time mentoring in Pitch Wars (after being an alternate mentee in 2014) and Rachel made the process so incredibly rewarding. She spoiled me with her open mind and ruthlessness toward her drafts. I challenged her to take significant risks (hello, total POV change!) and, without fail, she went far beyond my expectations. She still inspires me with...

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