Archive | August 2013

Pitch Madness – it’s on again…Monopoly style

Pitch Madness submission window will be open for 24 hours on August 24!

Madness is a contest to win a request from one or more of the
participating agents. We have 15 agents signed up to compete for your pitches. I will have
an agent introduction post on August 21! Here are the fabulous agents participating:

  • Jessica Sinsheimer (@jsinsheim) with Sarah Jane Freymann Literary
  • Melissa Jeglinski (@MJeglinski) with The Knight Agency
  • Carlie Webber (@carliebeth) with CK Webber Associates
  • Jodell Sadler (@picturebklunch) with Sadler-Caravette Children’s Literary
  • Terrie Wolf (@AKA_Terrie) with AKA Literary Management

submission window will be open from 12:01 AM EST on August 24 until 11:59PM EST. You should have plenty of time to get your
submissions in. There is no limit of how many entries will be accepted.
So basically everyone who sends in an entry during the submission
window, will make it into the first round of slush readers. Please note:
All entries sent before or after the allotted times will be deleted.

will be 60 finalists moving onto the agent round. Pitch Madness will accept Middle Grade, Young Adult, New Adult, and Adult completed
fiction, novel length (no novellas) manuscripts only. This time around we will not accept
non-fiction. Only one entry per writer this round. 
do you need to enter? A 35-word (max) pitch and the first 250 words of
your finished manuscript. If the 250th word falls in the middle of a
sentence go to the end of the sentence. I will post formatting
instructions before the submission window opens, along with the email
address to send your entries to.

We have two rounds of slush readers before the final host picking round. Our readers are so awesome!

Madness will be on four blogs and each blog host will have a co-host
helping her choose their top 15 entries. I will have a post up following
the Teen Eyes Editorial contest to introduce the hosts, co-hosts, and
slush readers.

Here are the links to the participating blogs with their teams:




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Team Slush Readers: 

  • KT Hanna
  • Tonya Kuper
  • Lindsey Sprague
  • Rebecca Weston

Team Slush Readers: 

  • Dahlia Adler (Slush Coordinator)
  • Brianna Shrum
  • Mina Vaughn
  • Feaky (Tamara) Snucker

Team Slush Readers: 

  • Heather Webb
  • Phil Siegel
  • Sarah Henning
  • Lizzy Charles

Team Slush Readers: 

  • Sarah Blair
  • Catherine Scully
  • JA Ward
  • Dannie Morin

Here’s the schedule …

  • Slush Readers Introduction on August 19
  • Hosts and their teams Introduction on August 20
  • Agent Introduction on August 21
  • Rules of the Game on August 22
  • Submission window will be on August 24 open for 24 hours 
  • The first slush round will be August 25-28
  • The second slush round will be August 29-Sept. 2
  • The final round will be Sept. 3 – 5 (host and co-hosts)
  • The top 60 picks for the agent round will go up on the blogs on
    Sept. 6 at 8AM EDT (NY time)
  • Sept. 10 at 12PM EDT (Noon) the agents requests are revealed, and right afterward is the tying agents challenge round.
  • There will be a #PitMad Twitter Pitch Party on September 12 from 8AM to 8PM EST.
    That’s it for now. Come back next week to meet the slush readers, hosts, and agents!

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Delirium song launch




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My friend and former co-blogger on YAtopia, DJ DeDmyter has an amazing new song. Find out more about it:

When he’s not writing, YA author DJ
DeSmyter (Hunted)
can often be found sitting at the piano stringing melodies and chords together
to create songs. His journey as a singer/songwriter has led him to organizing
benefit concerts and releasing songs on his own YouTube channel under the name
The Wishing Well. In 2011, his song “Delirium” was chosen by
HarperCollins to be the official fan song for the bestselling novel of the same
name by Lauren Oliver.

Today, DJ is excited to share another Delirium-inspired song, this time using
the words from “A Child’s Walk Home”, which appears in the trilogy as a nursery
rhyme. And to help celebrate the song’s release, DJ is giving away a paperback
copy of Delirium signed by Lauren
a listen

And enter the contest here
For all the latest updates on DJ’s writing
and other projects, visit!

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Recognising your strengths as a writer: Guest Post

Today’s guest post is from Kat Ellis
So many times, I’ve scrolled through
twitter and groaned inwardly as some prolific writer announces their “10k words
today – WOOHOO!” Or even “Only 10k words today
L” (at which I may or may not quietly set aside my phone and my
laptop lest I destroy them, and stare at the ceiling while I count to 10.) It’s
easy to see what other writers do well—extremely well, in some cases—and feel a
little lame by comparison.
I’m not a fast drafter. I have a habit of
self-editing as I’m writing, so can come away from a ‘writing’ session with
fewer words than I started with.
But this doesn’t matter.
Because where I may be seen as a
snail-paced writer by some, I edit like greased lightning. (I know, it’s not
often one gets to actually use that phrase in real life.) And I think it’s
partly to do with my slow writing pace (because I write more carefully) and my
frowned-upon editing as I go along (because I’m cleaning up a lot of mess right
there), so it tends to balance out.
The last MS I completed took around 5
months to draft (not counting a few gaps). At the end of that, I spent maybe 3
days editing before I sent it off to my betas, then another 2 days editing
before it went off to my agent. I was on a bit of a deadline, otherwise I
wouldn’t have done this so quickly, but shiz got DONE.
I know that self-editing is one of my
strengths as a writer. There are lots of other things I’m not good at – if you ever meet me in person, you will either have
to a) carry most of the conversation, or b) get me drunk. I’m not shy, but I
spend more time inside my head than is strictly sociable. On the other hand, I
am a somewhat prolific tweeter – I
chat to more people on there than I do in real life. LOTS more. And both these
things can be useful if you plan on having a writing career.
There are lots of other things in the
writerly list of checks and balances where I suck or am genius (ha!) – things
like grammar, pacing, world-building, characterisation, taking criticism,
giving critiques, and on and on and ON…and if I sat down and tallied up those
checks and balances, I’d have my Writer Score. (Don’t do this.)
Fact is, I write novels at a rate of 2 or 3
a year, and I think they’re pretty nifty when I’m finished with them. It
doesn’t matter what I’ve struggled with in the writing process or where I want
to show off, because a reader who (hopefully) picks up that book and reads it
cover to cover won’t be thinking about my writing process, or the editing, or
me as a person AT ALL.
And if I can write something that makes the
reader forget that the story they’re reading isn’t real—but is in fact just
made-up words and ideas out of a crazy woman’s brain—then I’d say that’s my
biggest strength as a writer. 

Kat Ellis is a young adult writer from North Wales. Her debut novel, BLACKFIN SKY, is forthcoming from Firefly Press (May 2014, UK), and Running Press Kids (Fall 2014, USA). You’ll usually find Kat up to no good on Twitter, playing badminton like a ninja, or watching scary films with her husband and feral cat. She speaks Welsh fluently and French badly. 

Want to know more about Kat? She lurks around on her blog, website and Twitter

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