Pitch-slam weekend is here! Please read below for rules, and information on how to praticipate!
The pitches will be 4-5 lines in length and should be pasted in the COMMENTS section with your full name and title of the work. Nothing longer than 4-5 lines will be considered. The pitch should give the reader an idea of what the story is about. For example, below is a pitch for Harrry Potter.
"Harry Potter is the most miserable, lonely boy you can imagine. He’s shunned by his relatives,and forced to live in the cupboard under the stairs. Harry’s world gets turned upside down on his 11th birthday, when an invite to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry arrives. He learns of the evil Lord Voldemort who killed his parents, and then tried and failed to kill Harry when he was an infant. Harry later learns he was saved for a reason." -- from Wiki Summaries
Members will enter pitches beginning Friday January 13, 2012 at 3PM EST thru Sunday at midnight EST. Agents may read pitches at any time.
During the week of January 16-19 however, judges will read and respond to/comment on pitches.
Judges will be looking for their top 5 pitches (per judge). A total of TEN members will have a chance to revise and resubmit based on agent feedback. These are the TEN finalists.
Upon completion of pitch review, judges will POST their top 5 pitches by author and title, establishing the top 15 finalists ON January 20 no later than 3PM EST. So be sure to check back then!
Once posted, those finalists will have a chance to resubmit and repost during the weekend of Jan 20-22, 2012.
Judges will review the revised pitches and choose 1 (each judge) as winners: 1. The best and 2. A second best, and 3. Runner up, by Jan 23
The two who win the top designation will be awarded a full manuscript critique from whichever judge has chosen them. The 3rd will win a gift from Sourcebooks Fire and YALITCHAT.ORG, TBD.
Pitch-Slam Judge Profiles
Rachael Dugas joined Talcott Notch Literary as an Associate Agent in June 2011. She earned her BA in English from Ithaca College and has worked as an editorial intern at Sourcebooks, where she assisted with their women's fiction, romance, and Jane Austen-related titles. Rachael currently represents cookbooks and young adult, middle grade, and adult fiction in the contemporary, paranormal, women's, and romance genres. She would also love a beautifully written historical and/or literary fiction, some really terrific memoir, and more fun, contemporary YA or adult fiction, especially pertaining to food or the performing arts.
Carlie Webber refused to major in English in college because no one would let her read Stephen King or R.L. Stine for class. She took her love of young adult and genre fiction to the University of Pittsburgh, where she obtained a Master of Library and Information Science, and worked as a YA librarian and reviewer for publications including Kirkus Reviews. Wishing to explore her interest in the business side of books, she decided to switch from librarianship to publishing and enrolled in the Columbia Publishing Course. Now she is building her agenting career on her favorite genres: young adult, middle grade, romance, horror, mystery, suspense, thrillers, literary fiction, contemporary fantasy and women's fiction. Her ongoing submissions wishlist includes but is not limited to high-concept YA, literary suspense, grunge era nostalgia and things that go bump in the night. Carlie is also a member of the YALITCHAT.ORG Submissions Panel!
Website: Jane Rostrosen Literary Agency
(will not be offering editorial prizes, will read and comment on pitches)
Leah acquires YA fiction for the Sourcebooks Fire imprint, original single title romance for Sourcebooks Casablanca and select romance reprints for Casablanca Classics. She's looking for projects with a fresh premise, a lively pace and a solid marketing hook. YA should appeal to the older teen market with crossover adult potential. The romance can be any subgenre: contemporary, paranormal, historical, romantic suspense, fantasy, time travel, or any combination thereof. Please submit cover letter in the body of an email with full manuscript (if available) or first 3 chapters and a synopsis attached as Word documents. Leah is also a member of the YALITCHAT.ORG Submissions Panel!
THE DIM by Janet B Taylor
History blows and so do you, were the last words Hope Walton said to her mother. Then she died, and Hope's life became a nightmare of pills and regret. When Hope learns there's a chance to get her mom back, she agrees to do whatever it takes. She never dreamed that meant joining in a rescue that would take her to the twelfth century, and the site of the worst massacre in York, England's history.
Can you make the second sentence clearer so that we know immediately that Hope's mother, not Hope, died? Time travel seems to be very in vogue right now, so you've got that going for you. You mention that "Hope learns there's a chance to get her mom back," but could you work in a few words about how she learns it, or who she learns it from?
Careful of some potential pronoun confusion in that second sentence. Who is it giving Hope a chance to get her mom back? I think we need to weave the time angle a little more throughout so the last line doesn't feel like such a veer.
Ha! I, too, thought Hope died at first--whoops! The coincidence of the parting words and the history time travel seem perhaps just a bit too convenient to me as well.
FOREVER FRIDAY by Mara Rutherford
When 17-year-old Friday Anderson takes a job working for four hipster musicians, the last thing she’s expecting to discover is that they’re immortals. Not only is she one of them, she’s the only immortal capable of killing another, making her a deadly weapon several people would like to get their hands on. Between magic rings, ancient curses, and the fact that Friday’s going to have to live with the same haircut for the rest of her life, it’s going to take some time getting used to this whole “undead” thing. Forever should just about do it.
It sounds like you have some good sarcastic humor here, which I always appreciate, and it's quite clear to me where your book is going. But does this humor line up with the more serious implications of Friday being a weapon?
I like the humor here, but it also sounds like a lot going on. "Undead" immediately makes me think zombie or vampire. If that's why she's immortal, say so.
I adore the haircut for eternity comment and Friday's unusual name. I'd like to know why she's immortal/what she is before I make a decision whether I'd read further, however.
Moon Strings by Leslie Rose - Sci-Fi Romance
Best friends,16-year-old Mellylora Whisper and Prince Jexa, are shocked when a royal oath is revealed, proclaiming they bind themselves in the future beyond their reliable friendship to unite their families. As they dare to test their destiny, Jexa fights intergalactic accusations blaring across the NewsNets of an unsavory tryst with a conniving classmate, while Mellylora is dragged into a venomous dark project that has the power to pull her beyond the Prince’s reach forever. Their future looks as impossible as grasping a moon string.
This pitch doesn't work for me. First, it seems like the plot is "they have to get married to save the world," which is something I don't enjoy reading (though others might). Second, what destiny has to be tested? What are moon strings? There isn't enough here that's really concrete, no one incident that either brings them together, tears them apart, or affects their future.
At first I couldn't even tell one was a girl and one was a boy, so I didn't immediately understand the implications of binding themselves in the future. I feel as though the stakes are super unbalanced--he's fighting dirty rumors and she's got a "venomous" project? Work on making the plot clearer and more succinct.
Agreed that I have no clue what moon strings are... I can't even make something up, actually! I just felt like this query was full of a lot of jargon that didn't really tell us much. Be specific, please!