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A Pitch Wars Team Interview with Rachel Morris and mentor, Laura Brooke Robson

Saturday, 12 January 2019  |  Posted by Brenda Drake


Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase starting on February 6, 2019, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2018 Pitch Wars Teams.

Next up, we have . . .

Rachel Morris
Rachel Morris
Laura Brooke Robson
Laura Brooke Robson
Website | Twitter

Laura, why did you choose Rachel?

Rachel’s prose is to die for. It’s enthralling and beautiful. The world she created is sweeping, lush, and utterly vivid. She twists classic elements of fantasy stories and fairytales and spins them into something completely fresh. I immediately wanted to drink coffee in the palace garden with her main character. And Rachel is so enthusiastic, so dedicated, and so much fun to work with!

Rachel, what makes you excited to work with Laura?

Laura seemed like an absolutely perfect fit for my story. We have similar tastes in deep, immersive fantasy worlds with a focus on character development and relationships. And having finished my first round of revisions, I can say with absolute confidence that she really is the perfect mentor for me! Her questions about my story and characters have brought out shiny new plot threads to tie everything together, and that’s my favorite kind of writing epiphany.

Laura, summarize Rachel’s book in 3 words.

Earth breathes magic

Rachel, summarize your book in 3 words.

Bittersweet, liminal magic.

Laura, tell us about yourself. Something we may not already know.

I write YA fantasy and love to read lush prose and mouthwatering descriptions of food. My 2020 debut does not yet have an official title, but I promise it exists. I’m descended from one of the original Salem witches.

Rachel, what do you hope to get out of the Pitch Wars experience?

The strongest version of my manuscript yet, a fabulous support group of fellow authors, new writing skills, and perhaps the perfect agent match? We’ll see!

Rachel, tell us about yourself! What makes you and your manuscript unique?

This has been the book of my heart since I was about twelve, and one I started properly developing my freshman year of high school. I’ve always loved fantasy, but a lot of the books I read felt very distant and more focused on the external than the internal. I’d say that’s changed a lot recently, especially in YA, but I always wanted to read about a deep interrogation of fantasy tropes often taken for granted: chosen ones, stoic, brooding love interests, plucky orphans with best friends who seem to support them no matter what, for no discernible reason, unexplained villains without clear motivation, a lack of attention to the specificities of worldbuilding like history, language, culture, economy, and especially technology…all of these things and more I want to dive into headfirst and dig into with gusto, answering all the “why”s of fantasy with satisfaction and a diverse cast of characters. With that in mind, I’m weaving a fantasy world full of history, forgotten and forbidden magics and alchemy, and plenty of twists, turns, revelations, and betrayal. I’ve been inspired in many ways, but a lot of my childhood inspirations most prominent in this story are Beauty and the Beast, Anastasia, and tons of video games, especially JRPGs. The heart of the story also deals with lost religions and identity; as someone raised in a religion very different from my ancestors’ on either side of my family, a lot of my personal feelings went into my protagonist’s identity struggles. I’m excited to share my heart with the world!

Thank you for supporting our Pitch Wars Teams! The Agent Showcase is February 6 – 11, 2019. If you’re an agent and would like to participate, you must register here: https://pitchwars.org/info-for-agents/.

We hope you’ll join us to support our teams on the Twitter hashtag #PitchWars.

Filed: Interviews

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