You know when you do something spur of the moment that ends with you pulling your hair and laughing manically? Yup.
On November 26th Brenda Drake posted a contest called Pitch Wars. It's all about creating the ultimate hook, or pitch for a book. Thirty-seven coaches (agented/published writers/editor/industry pros) put themselves out there and asked for unagented/unpublished writers to pitch their completed manuscripts to them. 591 writers answered the call. Each writer could select 3 coaches to pitch. Each coach selected 3 manuscripts to champion--one pick, and two alternates (in case their first choice falls through). These coaches will work with their writers to strengthen their pitches for a final round (January 23-24), when all the teams will pitch their manuscripts to a panel of 16 judges/literary agents. The winner will be the person who receives the most requests for their book.
I saw the contest and thought, "Hey, I have all the requirements and I've been querying. Why not?" So I vetted out the coaches, picked the three most stellar ones (for my genre), and tossed a few pages at them.
Response #1: "I really enjoyed reading the material you sent me for DARK MOON. ... you have a really great story here ..." But ultimately, she went with other manuscripts.
Response #2: "You made it into my top ten (out of a LOT of submissions) ... For what you are writing, you do it very, very well. ... I am assuming this will be snapped up quickly..." But again, she passed, offering to help if I don't find this baby a home immediately.
Response #3: "I can't gush enough about your pitch. ...we can wipe the floor with everyone at Pitch Wars then celebrate with Cheese!"
I GOT PICKED!!
Was I surprised? Um, more like dumb-struck. So here's my wonderful teammate who is currently bulldozing through DARK MOON so we can pitch it, and wipe the floor with our competition. (Which we will.)
Meet Sharon: a writer of YA and NA weird fiction and contemporary fiction, a blogger at YAtopia, Writing Teen Novels, Down Under Wonderings, a regular speaker at The Whitsunday Voices Youth Literature Festival, and a NA/YA intern for Entangled. She has a habit of posting weird profile pics and has been stalked by women because of her great taste in shoes.
Together we are the Grimm Writers, and although I never could have anticipated being picked, I couldn't have a better partner. Sharon is AWESOME!
So I guess the moral of the story is, you can't be a winner without trying. Take a chance. Do crazy things. Jump before you look. You never know what will happen.