Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Writer's Wish

Christmas was 
Merry and Bright! 
Looking forward to a 
New Year filled with many 
wonderful stories. Good luck
writing a pitch 
perfect MS &
finding it a
good home.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Write, Edit, Pitch, Edit . . .

. . . summarizes the cycle of my writing life over 2012

Calvin takes a break from chewing on rope toy & listening to my pitch.
What have I learned?
A strong Pitch has four parts:
* Main character (MC)
* Initial conflict 
* Obstacle
* MC's desired goal

Good pitch includes
* Hook - An intro to your pitch that latches the read and creates interest.
* Describes plot, not theme 
* With voice in 3rd person POV

Types of pitches
Pitching sounds straight forward, but each online pitch contest has a twist.
Twitter Pitch - 140 character count 
includes the hashtag
Blog Pitch - specific word count
2 or 3 Sentence Pitch - word max

My MG novel: TRIPLE B
Main character - 13-year-old Samantha 
Initial conflict - home not safe with alcoholic father & mom as bystander
Obstacle - school no longer safe place with verbal and cyberbullying
MC's desired goal -Breaking the circle of bullying, so Samantha feels safe at home, school and community.

TRIPLE B Twitter Pitch   
13yo Samantha’s Triple B List: Bullied-Samantha, Bully-dad & Bystander-mom. Now lies & texts at school turn friends into bystanders. #tag

TRIPLE B Blog Pitch
Thirteen-year-old Samantha sums up her family in a Triple B list: Bullied- Samantha, Bully- father and Bystander- mom. But when Samantha’s verbal fights with the popular girl at school cross the line into bullying, her BFFs also turn into bystanders. Now all cell carrying eighth graders are passing mean word and picture texts about Samantha. With her safety at risk, Samantha must break the circle of bullying in her family and school.

For the over 500 of us who didn't make it into Pitch Wars, there will be a twitter pitch party on the hashtag #PitMad on January 25. Details will be announced on: Brenda Drake Writing . . . under the influence of coffee So get your twitter pitches ready and make sure to include the hashtag in your 140 character count.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Beginnings and Middles . . .

No Real Endings

Yes, I wrote a middle grade novel from beginning to end. Well not exactly in that order. But until TRIPLE B finds a warm publishing house to call its home, my manuscript is not complete.

Recently, I submitted my work to an awesome group of author/mentors in a writing contest called PitchWars. The goal is prove your writing worthy of a mentors time. The submission window closes Wednesday, December 5th at 8 p.m. EST.

How do you WOW other authors, agents and publishers? Believe me, I've been working on that answer through numerous edits, cuts and rewritten sections.

TRIPLE B's opening sentence appears to be a cliche, which would WOW no one. Then in the next sentence I surprise the reader by showing the unexpected. By twisting a cliche, I'm hinting to the reader not to jump to conclusions about my thirteen-year-old main character. An eighth grader's life can change quickly. Be ready!

While I wait PATIENTLY for the Pitch Wars mentors to chose the lucky writers they will guide in the coming weeks, I will keep writing. After all, that's what writers do.

Thanks to the Picture Book Idea Month Challenge, I created a list of 32 ideas for future young children's stories. I could write about bringing our puppy home almost three years ago. Or let my mind explore other ideas that may one day find there way to a publisher's desk. 

And one day soon, I'm determined to find a real ending for TRIPLE B.

Good luck and keep writing!