Day 39 (Part 2): Pitch Wars Query & 1st Page Workshop with mentors, Julia Nobel & Veronica Bartles
Jun30

Day 39 (Part 2): Pitch Wars Query & 1st Page Workshop with mentors, Julia Nobel & Veronica Bartles

Welcome to our Query and 1st Page Workshop with some of our amazing Pitch Wars mentors. From a Rafflecopter lottery drawing, we selected writers to participate in our query and first page workshops. Each mentor has graciously critiqued a query or 500 word opening from our lucky winners. We’ll be posting four critiques per day (except weekends) through July 7. Our hope is that these samples will help shine up your query and first page and that you’ll get to know some of our wonderful Pitch Wars mentors. We appreciate our mentors for giving up their time to do the critiques. If you have something encouraging to add, feel free to comment below. Please keep all comments tasteful. We will delete any inappropriate or hurtful ones. First up we have … Pitch Wars Mentor Julia Nobel . . . Twitter | Website Julia is a writing coach and middle grade and young adult author. Her childhood obsession with The Babysitters Club turned into a lifelong passion for reading and writing children’s literature. She offers writing masterclasses and courses for writers in all genres, and is a 2017 Pitch Wars Mentor. Her 3-year-old daughter likes to help her write by throwing apple sauce at the keyboard and pressing the escape key. Find out about Julia’s writing coach services on her Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/JuliaNobelBooks/ and check out her upcoming classes schedule here: http://julianobel.com/for-writers/. Julia’s Query Critique… AGE CATEGORY: Adult GENRE: Psychological Thriller Dear Agent, I am hoping you will consider my debut novel for representation. [You can delete this sentence, because the agent already knows you are hoping they will consider the novel, and you have such limited space to pitch your story.] No Colour in Black takes reader to a dark and troubled world but also one each of us can relate to directly or indirectly – otherwise known as life. Any of us could fall into a world, given hindsight – we would hide from. For my lead protagonist, her world became unrecognisable.  She asks us – who do you fear most – someone with nothing to lose or someone who has it all to lose? We sit deep in the dirt of her emotions; her current life intertwined by her abusive past. Grappling with her conscience and sanity. A burning need to protect her son – fuels her fight. [I really appreciate the emotions you are trying to evoke with this paragraph. I think it would be more successful if it was more specific and focused on the plot. Who is the protagonist? What is her specific situation? How did she get there? Start with the details.] Blinded by charm, hoodwinked by...

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Day 39 (Part 1): Pitch Wars Query & 1st Page Workshop with mentors, Aimee Salter and Kelly Hopkins
Jun30

Day 39 (Part 1): Pitch Wars Query & 1st Page Workshop with mentors, Aimee Salter and Kelly Hopkins

  Welcome to our Query and 1st Page Workshop with some of our amazing Pitch Wars mentors. From a Rafflecopter lottery drawing, we selected writers to participate in our query and first page workshops. Each mentor has graciously critiqued a query or 500 word opening from our lucky winners. We’ll be posting four critiques per day (except weekends) through July 7. Our hope is that these samples will help shine up your query and first page and that you’ll get to know some of our wonderful Pitch Wars mentors. We appreciate our mentors for giving up their time to do the critiques. If you have something encouraging to add, feel free to comment below. Please keep all comments tasteful. We will delete any inappropriate or hurtful ones. First up we have … Pitch Wars Mentor Aimee Salter Aimee is the author of Every Ugly Word, (Alloy, 2014) a gripping and emotional story about a high school junior who can talk to her future self in the mirror, but is forced to deal with the devastating consequences of bullying; and Dark Touch (Alloy, 2016), an equally raw story about a young, abused woman whose feelings are communicated to anyone she touches—including the guy she’s falling in love with. Website: www.aimeelsalter.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/AimeeLSalter Twitter: www.twitter.com/AimeeLSalter Books: http://ow.ly/Yon9t Aimee’s recent book … Amazon Tully isn’t alone in her skin. Whenever she touches someone, they feel everything she feels. All her ugliness. All her darkness. All her pain. The only thing she wants is to be left alone–and to finally get out of her small Oregon town. But then she meets Chris. He’s everything she’s not. Light. Trusting. Innocent. And he wants Tully. Tully knows she should spare him the heartache of being with her. But when he touches her, she’s not sure she’ll have the strength to push him away–until he learns about her dark past, and what really goes on in her ever-decaying home. From the author of Every Ugly Word comes a poignant, emotionally raw story about the violence that plays out behind closed doors and the all-consuming passion of first love. Aimee’s Query Critique . . . Dear [agent], It’s been 25 years since the Nazis won the Second World War. [Excellent opening! Tells me exactly where and what we’re about to read (II World War alternate history)] The Jews have mostly disappeared. The Reich has expanded across three continents. And a single wrong word could get you killed. [Here’s the greater threat/antagonistic force right up front too. Well done.] It took two words to kill Markus Schneider’s father. Two words nine-year-old Markus said without thinking. Two words that...

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Guest Post: From Pitch Wars to Publication by May Bridges
Jun30

Guest Post: From Pitch Wars to Publication by May Bridges

From Pitch Wars to Publication by May Bridges It’s thrilling to see everyone gearing up for the 6th Pitch Wars! I remember all the buzz that built up the year I entered. It doesn’t seem like two years ago. So much has happened since then, from finding my agent, signing a book deal, and now publication. I can tell you that the two years since Pitch Wars didn’t go exactly as I might have planned. With expectations and excitement running at an all-time high all the way through the Pitch Wars contest, it’s hard to know what to expect when the dust settles. Does everyone that makes it get an agent? Is your writing career suddenly boost into overdrive and put on the fast track to publication? Well, maybe, but that isn’t how it goes for everyone, and I’d say it isn’t how it goes for most. Some end up agented almost before the contest ends. Some get tons of requests, some don’t. Of those that find an agent, their Pitch Wars book might be what gets them a book deal, and it might not. I’m sure some of you are scratching your heads, wondering if all of this is true, if it’s possible to go thought it and end up without an agent or a book deal, what is the big deal about Pitch Wars? The prize for many isn’t what you might think. The greatest benefit of Pitch Wars is the people. It’s the connections you make with other writers, and industry professionals. No matter how your journey goes post Pitch Wars, the people that went through that with you will be priceless. For my PW group, there were some that were agented almost before the contest ended and had book deals within weeks. But that wasn’t the end of PW for them. Our group is still a sounding board for them. We are critique partners for each other. We are a private group they can share new book ideas with, work through plot issues with, and test out new titles on. We talk to each other about our journeys with our agents and what being on submission is like. Each of us are in different places on our journey, we bring our own knowledge and experience to the group. It makes for a wealth of knowledge that you can tap into. It is a prize that is immeasurable in value. In my journey, I didn’t land my agent through Pitch Wars. I worked with my amazing Pitch Wars mentor, Jami Nord, to make sure my query letter was on point and I jumped into the slush...

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