Twitter Pitch Party Today!
Dec01

Twitter Pitch Party Today!

See the official #PitMad page here.   There’s a twitter pitch party on the Twitter hashtag #PitMad today, December 1st, from 8AM to 8PM EDT. Get your twitter pitches ready and make sure to include all the appropriate hashtags, especially #PitMad, in your 140 character tweet-pitch. If you need help creating the perfect pitch, there’s a post about it here: The 35-word Twitter Pitch . . . Simplified THE RULES . . . Be polite and don’t say anything mean about a writer’s pitch. Please, don’t “like” any pitches. That’s only for agents. If you want to show support, reply with a comment or re-tweet the pitch. You can quote the tweet with your support or praise, or just re-tweet without quoting. Any genre can be pitched. Pitch up to three times per day, per manuscript. It helps to pitch when you see an agent on the hashtag (throughout the day for a better response). Add #YA, #MG, #NA, #A, or #PB in your pitch to help the agents find the ones they represent. For more detail with your hashtags, see all of the hashtags here! If your tweet is “liked” (or hearted) by an agent, please confirm they are a legitimate agent, search the agent’s feed, and see what the agent would like #PitMad participants to send them. Then send the requested materials. QUESTIONS? Tweet or DM me at @HeatherCashman For added fun, get some popcorn and scroll through the #fakepitmad pitches.   ALL INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS ARE WELCOME TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS...

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Pitch Wars Insights by Michael Mammay
Nov15

Pitch Wars Insights by Michael Mammay

  Now that the agent round for Pitch Wars this year is over, I want to talk about some of the hard truths that sometimes get glossed over in the excitement. Pitch Wars is awesome, and it helps a lot of people, but it’s important to remember that it’s not a magic ticket. You still have to put in the work, you still have to keep growing, and publishing is still an incredibly subjective business. To illustrate some of this, and offer some insight, I asked the people from the Pitch Wars 2015 class some questions, a year after they got accepted. 71 people responded. Here are their answers.   As you can see, not everybody had a life-changing experience, and only about half the people have an agent a year later. To get a feel for how getting an agent changes someone’s opinion of the contest, I took a look at the people who got an agent, to see if they had a different  average result. Those without agents averaged 3.6 when rating their experience. Those who now have agents averaged 4.6. It’s impossible to say for sure that people were more satisfied just because they had a better result. There are a lot of factors at play – it could be the fact that they connected with their mentor made it a good experience, which then led to getting an agent. But there’s certainly some correlation. In my opinion, this doesn’t tell the whole story. Getting an agent is obviously the goal, but the most important thing, to me, is what you learned. To that end, I asked people to rate where they see themselves today as compared to a year ago.   When you talk about Pitch Wars, and even other contests, a lot of what you hear about is the community, and how that’s the best thing you get out of it. I asked some questions to see what mentees thought.   There is a bit of a bias in this data, since if people aren’t in the Facebook group anymore, they probably didn’t see the call to join the survey.  The statistics nerd in me has to note that as an opt-in survey, while the data is useful, it’s not completely scientific. Lastly, I wanted to ask some questions that might help people who were considering joining Pitch Wars next year. It’s not too early to start. I started writing the book I entered into Pitch Wars 2015 in November of 2014. Are you considering it? Here’s what our mentees had to say. So of the 71 people who responded, two of them wouldn’t do it...

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The Manuscript Academy Scholarship Giveaway!
Oct11

The Manuscript Academy Scholarship Giveaway!

  The application period has closed. Winners will be contacted by email on or before October 24. If you don’t receive an email, it means you weren’t selected for the sponsorship. We had many entries and it will be difficult choosing just three. We love giving back to the community, so please keep an eye out on this site and the new pitchwars.org site (coming soon) for more opportunities with contests, free workshops, free books, and more. Thank you! Brenda Drake     The Pitch Wars community celebrates education, hard work, and supporting one another. Because of this, we’re joining forces with The Manuscript Academy, an online writers’ workshop by Manuscript Wishlist. Pitch Wars is offering a scholarship to three writers, so they can attend their choice of two upcoming conferences: Writing Picture Books, Middle Grade, and Young Adult, begins November 5, 2016 How to Get Your Adult Fiction (or Memoir) Published, begins November 26, 2016 Three writers will be selected based on a brief description of why you want/need this opportunity. Check out The Manuscript Academy and then fill out the form below to let us know why you would like to win one of the scholarships we’re giving away. The scholarship giveaway will be open until October 18th! About The Manuscript Academy . . . The Manuscript Academy offers world-class publishing instruction that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your home or a nearby coffee shop. Unlike traditional conferences, you simply need a computer, a tablet, or even your smartphone to log in and enjoy the very best instruction from some of the top minds in the literary community. Every online Manuscript Academy conference will give you the full educational and networking value of a traditional writing conference, but without the hassle of travel, paying for meals out, or arranging childcare. Event registrants will receive the following: Access to exclusive recorded classes and panels, designed to educate you about need-to-know topics such as how to submit your work, what agents and editors are looking for, how to craft amazing novels and books, the business of writing and promotion, and much more. You will have access to many high-quality recorded video presentations for 30 full days—so you can pause, rewind, and take notes at your own convenience. See the full schedule of classes here. Opportunities to pitch agents and editors one-on-one online. Using just your computer, you can arrange one-on-one pitches with literary agents and publishing house editors who are actively seeking books and clients right now. (Pitches are optional. You can sign up for as many pitches as you like.) Critique opportunities for your work. If you want a professional critique of...

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Pitch Wars Interview with Kaitlin Hundscheid and her mentor, Ashley Martin
Sep20

Pitch Wars Interview with Kaitlin Hundscheid and her mentor, Ashley Martin

Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams. And now, we have . . . Kaitlin Hundscheid – Mentee Twitter | Website Ashley Martin – Mentor Twitter | Website Kaitlin: Why did you choose Ashley? When I read Ashley’s bio and wish list, an angel choir belted in four-part harmony. “We love the same books, we enjoy the same things, and holy guacamole, she wants anything connected to classic children’s literature!” I’m pretty sure I did the Snoopy dance at this point because it was an oddly specific, not-everyone’s-cup-of-tea-aspect of my story. Stalking Following Ashley on Twitter for a couple weeks only cemented my excitement about submitting to her because she was so kind and helpful. Ashley: Why did you choose Kaitlin? Kaitlin’s story had all the things I was hoping for: Beautiful writing, a main character I adored (introduced with his nose in a book, no less), side characters that were unique and interesting in their own right, and a dash of humor. And it involved a very specific detail that’s near and dear to my heart: classic children’s literature. I also had a sneaking suspicion that Kaitlin and I were kindred spirits on many levels, starting with our mutual love of Earl Grey tea (a suspicion which has happily been confirmed). Go #TeamEarlGrey! Kaitlin: Summarize your book in three words. Saving cursed library. Ashley: Summarize Kaitlin’s book in three words. Library, rescue, mission. Kaitlin: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? I’m a MG writer, Latin teacher, and gin enthusiast, and I spend far too much of my free time chasing the larger cat away from the smaller cat’s food bowl and keeping my emotionally needy corgi happy. I’ve always loved old things. I like musty books, overgrown paths, crumbling buildings—anything that echoes a time and place far removed from my own, a place where people lived the same joys and sorrows that I’m experiencing today. Many of the ideas that shape my writing started percolating during my college years studying Classics (because you can’t get much older than that). Classical studies taught me that there truly is nothing new under the sun, that though appearances might change, the substance of true things never alters. Several years of teaching K-5 showed me how children can also sense this, and I was fascinated by their interest in discussing philosophical topics usually reserved for older students. When I started...

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Pitch Wars Interview with Tara Creel and her mentor, Jenna Lehne
Sep20

Pitch Wars Interview with Tara Creel and her mentor, Jenna Lehne

Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams. And now, we have . . .   Tara Creel – Mentee Twitter Jenna Lehne – Mentor Twitter | Website Tara: Why did you choose Jenna? There were so many things about Jenna that I had hoped would make us a good match. She specifically said she wanted mystery, and not one her mom would read. That made me laugh and look at the voice in my story to be sure it was middle grade appropriate. Then she said she loved When You Reach Me, which was one of my comp titles. At the end of her wishlist, she threw in a note about Native Americans and my story revolves around Native American myths so I was really hoping that would lure her in. She also seemed like she would really support my story and that it’d be a connection throughout our careers, not just for PitchWars, and that was important to me. That, and our bond over terrible reality TV ;). Jenna: Why did you choose Tara?  I had my eye on Tara right off the bat. She was super friendly on twitter and her Pimp My Bio had me refreshing my e-mail for her entry. It took almost an hour after she tweeted that she had sent her app for it to make it’s way to me, so when it didn’t come in right away I panicked. I knew that I wanted to work with her when I found myself jotting down revision notes on my phone, stickies, and random scraps of paper. Even when I was reading for fun, I found myself thinking about her characters. I fell asleep reading her full (due to my toddler, not lack of interest) and dreamt that I was treasure hunting around Hearst Castle. I knew that morning that Tara was the mentee for me. She’s incredibly talented and I’m thrilled I get to help her introduce Amelia to the world. Tara: Summarize your book in three words. Castle Mystery Treasure Jenna: Summarize Tara’s book in three words. Exhilarating, code-breaking fun! Tara: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique? I grew up in Utah, but after marrying my husband, we settled in Southern California. We now have four boys together and I use nap time and bed time as my writing time and have gotten really good at reading books while playing cars. I’ve been writing since elementary...

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Editorial Giveaway by Cornerstones Literary Consultancy!
Aug24

Editorial Giveaway by Cornerstones Literary Consultancy!

  Cornerstones Literary Consultancy Giveaway! Cornerstones UK | Cornerstones US | Twitter | Blog   For those of you who don’t become a Pitch Wars mentee, we have a giveaway from Cornerstones Literary Consultancy. Cornerstones, the No. 1 literary consultancy in the UK, has expanded into the US. They provide editorial feedback, scout for agents, and have launched many writers over the years: Celia Bryce, Lezanne Clannachan, Sarwat Chadda, Liz Kessler, Ava McCarthy, Jane Yardley, Lezanne Clannachan, and Kate Glanville to name a few. Three lucky people will win one hour each of free editing with Michele Rubin, Managing Editor at Cornerstones Literary Consultancy, US. ($1000 worth of editorial services.) Only Pitch Wars 2016 participants will be allowed to win the contest. The contact information entered into this form will be given to Cornerstones so that Michele can contact you to set up your free hour of editing. To join the drawing, enter the Rafflecopter below.   Michele Rubin is the new Managing Editor at Cornerstones U.S.She was a Senior Executive Literary Agent at Writers House for 25 years (representing almost everything under the sun from upmarket fiction to memoir to middle grade, as well as The Estate of Martin Luther King), and left agenting in 2013 to work full-time as a freelance editor, writer, ghostwriter, and conductor of writing workshops. Her areas of expertise and interest are broad; she is open to all genres. She is thrilled to be working with Cornerstones and will be working away to establish the company in the U.S.         Only those who entered Pitch Wars and weren’t picked by a mentor can enter the contest. Enter now! a Rafflecopter giveaway Save Save Save Save Save...

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Giveaways by Author Accelerator!
Aug24

Giveaways by Author Accelerator!

We’re excited to offer some amazing editorial prizes from the fabulous people at Author Accelerator. Three writers who entered Pitch Wars and weren’t chosen by a mentor will win a full manuscript evaluation. Manuscript evaluations give writers a comprehensive summary of the strengths and weaknesses of their story and a 15-point checklist of the major elements of their complete manuscript. A $399 value. And one lucky writer who entered Pitch Wars and wasn’t chosen by a mentor will receive a full manuscript edit. Manuscript edits give writers a full developmental edit on their manuscripts, with on-the-page feedback and a comprehensive summary strengths/weaknesses. A $1500 value. What do you have to do for a chance to win? Simply enter the Rafflecopter below! Check out Author Accelerator for more information about their services … Author Accelerator Website Thank you for the giveaway Pitch Wars mentor, Jennie Nash! Private book coach: jennienash.com Chief Creative Officer: authoraccelerator.com   Enter the Rafflecopter now! a Rafflecopter...

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Pitch Wars LIVE Show TONIGHT!
Aug24

Pitch Wars LIVE Show TONIGHT!

The wait is almost over. Tomorrow, Pitch Wars mentees will be announced. But tonight at 7 p.m. EDT, we celebrate the long process of Pitch Wars by getting some amazing mentors together and chatting! We’ll be discussing the slush and how we picked our mentees, answering some questions, and so much more! So come out and join us for this two-hour Pitch-stravaganza! Ask questions via the tag #askmentor. You won’t want to miss it! Watch it on Youtube | Watch it in Google...

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