The day has finally arrived to reveal my PitchWars pick!
I know from the #PitchWars feed that the wait has been agonizing for participating writers, but I'm bowing before Brenda Drake for allowing us enough time to sort through our inboxes and reply to authors. When I signed on I never expected to receive over 50 submissions or that I would be able to hit my goal of offering query critiques to all of them.
It was so much fun to get a glimpse into an agent's life. And, um, enough to convince me that is one career path I will not be pursuing. The rejecting part was waaaaaay too agonizing!
So let's breeze right past that unpleasantness and get right to the ones I didn't have to pass on. Drumroll please...
I will be mentoring a very promising manuscript called THE ENIGMA FILES, which has the solidly awesome tagline of "X-Files for kids."
I finally get why agents say "send me anything, even if it's not what I rep because I just may surprise myself." I more like shocked the hell out of myself! I like light and fluffy and kissy-kissy (well, maybe just kissy, since this IS middle grade). But X-Files for kids? C'mon now. I can't wait to read on and see what Scully, er, Mason in this case, gets up to!
I also chose two alternates: DORKBOY, about a kid who tries to change his reputation with a school move, only to have his pesky little brother spoil his efforts and THE LAST BOY AT ST. EDITH'S about the very last boy standing at a formerly co-ed school now gone to the girls.
So, yup, pretty excited for my holiday reading!
Here is the part where I say, in all honesty, that I am in awe of the amount of crazy great in that inbox. If I were an agent (which, yeah, no) there were at *least* ten fulls I would have requested and probably more. Not a bad ratio. Being on the other side of this process also gave me a new perspective on how subjective it all is (I knew this. I did. But now I really, REALLY know this). There were plenty that were perfect, but just didn't grab me personally even though there was absolutely nothing wrong with them and other mentors loved them. It made me feel better about past rejections I've gotten and allowed me to believe that often the "it's not you, it's me" line was true.
Of course sometimes it was me. There were all kinds of common mistakes that I made before signing with my agent and, if I saw the same ones in a submission, I tried to gently point them out in my query critiques. I hope those comments are received in the spirit they were intended- which was purely a desire to be helpful in getting writers to the next level.
I hope that everyone participating has gotten something out of PitchWars so far and will play or play along at home throughout the next month. There's lots more to come!