Have questions about submitting to Pitch Wars or just want to know what it is? Start here!


Pitch Wars 2019 … The Mentors’ Picks!

Saturday, 2 November 2019  |  Posted by Brenda Drake


After weeks of reading and obsessing over all the fabulous entries our amazing mentors have finally chosen their mentees!

Behind the scenes, there’s been blood, sweat, and tears. Our mentors have worked tirelessly reading all their submissions for Pitch Wars. The mentors have cried and laughed and shared how much they love your words. There were tons, TONS, of great entries, and we were sad they all couldn’t be chosen. Reading and liking a story is subjective, and mentors chose the one manuscript that grabbed their heart. One that after reading, they couldn’t forget. Couldn’t pass up.

Please know that mentors are not required to send feedback to those who submitted to them. Our mentors have their own books to write, mentees to mentor, jobs, and family life.  Some will have the time to send feedback and some will not. Please don’t pester mentors for feedback in their emails, their sites, or on social media. If you get feedback, it’s a bonus.

There are many pathways to acquiring your publishing goals. Pitch Wars is just one of a few. Though we know you’ll be disappointed if you don’t find your name on the following list, please remember that you are in the game. Just finishing a manuscript requires a love for writing, and putting your work out there is such a brave act. Congratulations for getting into the game. Every heartache, every victory, will get you a step closer to success.

Sarah (Managing Director): I wanted to say thank you to everyone who submitted this year and participated in our wonderfully active community. I hope that you’ve already gotten something out of Pitch Wars – whether it’s knowledge, or new writing friends, or even just the practice. I always feel compelled to remind entrants that mentors can only choose one person to work with, and it is always a near-impossible choice, so please don’t think of not being chosen as a “rejection” or even a judgement on your book or your writing.

And huge congrats to the 2019 mentee class! I hope you’re ready to get to work!!

Brenda (Founding Director): I know all too well how it feels to be rejected. I’ve entered contests before and not been chosen. There was never a Pitch Wars for me. I’ve been rejected (a lot), had to end a relationship with an agent, and had to end a publishing deal that wasn’t the best for me. Perseverance is key in being successful in publishing. We pick ourselves up, learn what we need to get better, and head back into the trenches. I’ve made several friends on my publishing journey. This community is amazing! The community has supported me through some dark times and have celebrated with me through winning ones.  We all fail some and win some, but as long as we continue, our dreams can be realized. I’m still learning (and failing). My wish for you is to keep going, never give up, and gather friends who will cry and celebrate with you through the battles and victories. I admire each and every one of you for taking that brave leap and sharing your work. The support you all show each other touches my heart each day. I’m truly blessed to be in this community with you.

Thank you for entrusting us with your work!

Sarah and Brenda


And here is the Pitch Wars Class of 2019 …



Mentor (s) Mentee
Alex Segura Joe Passanisi
Alexa Martin & Suzanne Park Falon Ballard
Ava Reid & Rachel Morris Amanda Helander
Carolyne Topdjian Laura Young
Damyanti Biswas Mario Aliberto
Denny S. Bryce A.Y. Chao
Diana A. Hicks Anna Langford
Elizabeth Little Zoe B. Wallbrook
Farah Heron Suleena Bibra
Gia de Cadenet Mackenzie Littledale
Gladys Quinn Gigi Griffis
Gwynne Jackson Hugh Blackthorne
Halley Sutton & Layne Fargo Heather L. Levy
Hayley Stone & Erin A. Tidwell Kate Havas
Hayley Stone & Erin A. Tidwell Maiga Doocy
Ian Barnes Sophia Mortensen
Janet Walden-West & Anne Raven Cath Lauria
Kate Lansing Katie Bohn
Kathleen Barber Yvette Yun
Katie Golding Brooke Abrams
Keena Roberts Molly Steen
Kelly Siskind & Heather Van Fleet Stephanie Eding
Kerbie Addis & Ren Hutchings Emilee Martell
Kristen Lepionka & Ernie Chiara Rose Erickson
Laura Brown Tara Martin
Mary Ann Marlowe Jordan D’Amico
Mary Ann Marlowe A.J. Winder
Matthew Quinn Martin Nicole Duarte
Maxym M. Martineau Megan Van Dyke
Meryl Wilsner & Rosie Danan Jill Kelly
Mia P. Manansala & Kellye Garrett Manju Soni
Michelle Hauck & Carrie Callaghan Joanna Vitiello
Michelle Hauck Angel Di Zhang
Natalka Burian Elizabeth Brookbank
Nicole Glover Chandra Fisher
P. J. Vernon & Kelly J. Ford Ashton Noone
Paris Wynters Sara Sellers
Rebecca Enzor B.R. McCoy
Rob Hart Victor Manibo
Samantha Rajaram Leila Mottley
Sarah Remy Vaishnavi Patel
Stephen Morgan Jennifer Lycette
Susan Bishop Crispell Kerry Reardon
Susan Bishop Crispell Piper Vossy
Tim Akers Christine Daigle




Middle Grade

Mentor(s) Mentee
Adrianna Cuevas & Sarah Kapit George Jreije
Amanda Panitch Brendan Maghran
Eric Bell Jesse James Keitel
Erin Entrada Kelly Melissa McDaniel
Graci Kim & Karah Sutton Carol Williams
Jennifer L. Brown & Kim Long LK Frank
Jessica Bayliss Barb Hopkims
Julie Artz & Jessica Vitalis Parker Goodreau
K.C. Held Brighton Rose Kamen
Kit Rosewater & Ash Van Otterloo Cheryl Caldwell
Lacee Little & Bronwyn Clark Marie Hoy-Kenny
Maria Frazer & Meera Trehan Florence Migga
Nicole E Panteleakos Heather Clark
Nicole Melleby & A.J. Sass Lin Thompson
Rajani LaRocca & Remy Lai Maria Linn
Rebecca Petruck Rhonda Roumani
Sarah Suk & Julie Abe Robyn Field
Sean Easley Cliff Lewis
Shakirah Bourne Avione Lee
TJ Ohler Nathan Lyon



Young Adult

Mentor(s) Mentee
Abigail Johnson Sammi Spizziri
Adalyn Grace Sunya Mara
Aiden Thomas Anna Sortino
Andrea Contos Elora Ditton
Aty S. Behsam & Kylie Schachte Ann Fraistat
Auriane Desombre & Susan lee Kaitlyn Hill
Ayana Gray Hanna Bechiche
Carrie S. Allen & Sabrina Lotfi Jenny Coon Peterson
Cole Nagamatsu Anna Read
Deborah Falaye & Ciannon Smart Sarah Mughal Rana
Hoda Agharazi Stephanie Dodson
Isabel Ibanez Kate Pearsall
J.Elle Kelis Rowe
Jamie Howard Ava Tusek
Jen Marie Hawkins & Anna Birch Meaghan O’Keeffe
Jenna Lincoln Martha Keller
Jesse Q Sutanto Grace Shim
Judy I. Lin Melissa Chai
Julia Ember Amanda Jasper
Kat Dunn Kate Dylan
Kelly Quindlen & Adrienne Tooley Jen Cox-Shah
Kelsey Rodkey & Rachel Lynn Solomon Claire Sunghyun Ahn
Kimberly Gabriel & Dawn Ius LC Milburn
Kyle T. Cowan & Brenda Drake Sawyer Lovett
Laurie Dennison Megan Scott
Laurie Dennison Briana Johnson
Leila Siddiqui Samira Ford
Lindsey Frydman Melissa Poettcker
Liz Lawson & Jeff Bishop Anne Applegate
Lyndsay Ely Emily Varga
Michaela Greer Melissa McKinnon
Nancy Werlin Siana LaForest
Olivia Hinebaugh Meg Gaertner
Rachel Griffin Karyn Riddle
Ray Stoeve Kirt Ethridge
Rebecca Coffindaffer Michelle Wong
Rebecca Schaeffer Tanvi Berwah
SA Patel Aashna Avachat
Sam Taylor Beth Kander
Sandra Proudman & Raquel Vasquez Briana Miano Ruiz
Sarah Nicolas & Leigh Mar Ridley Adams
Sasha Peyton Smith & Kristin Lambert Mara Dabrishus
Sonia Hartl & Annette Christie Thais Vitorelli
ST Sterlings Kat Hillis
Zach Hines Mike Jeavons





  • First, I want to commend Pitch Wars team, especially Brenda, for not veering when the vision came that she establish a platform like this. Sarah too, the Managing Director, deserves a special mention. She’s an amazing brain and her presentations wowed me I must say. Through Pitch Wars I met true creative initiates from around the world who desire to be successful like other household names who walk/walked the path. It’s something I’m proud of. This is my first year to pitch and I ran into Pitch Wars barely a week before the SUBMISSIONS. How I did find Pitch Wars? I was reading Tomi Adeyemi’s(a countrywoman) YA debut, “Children of Blood and Bone” and I was completely drawn into the novel by her power of imagination and marvelous treatment of the themes that I wanted to know more about the book and the writer’s journey. My search on Google helped me as I also learnt that she was a Pitch Wars mentee before she was agented. Pitch Wars? Let me find out more about them, I said. Behold, I was very impressed with what I read about Pitch Wars. That many known great writers have been mentors and mentees of Pitch Wars makes the whole idea an effective shot in the arm. Deborah Falaye, too, is as a matter of fact. A fellow compatriot and I’m proud of her and her creative strides. No hard feelings. Let’s not be stuck in our craw that we will never want to try again.

    However, I want to encourage others like me who were not chosen as mentees for this year’s Pitch Wars. Pitch Wars had 3,547 SUBMISSIONS this year with just a hand full of mentors and each to choose just “a mentee” from the pile of pitches staring them in the face. We all prayed and hoped to be chosen. That was the spirit of optimism at its greatest though there wasn’t any way we would all be chosen. Writers are subjective; readers too, are. Our Pitch Wars mentors have been our readers and they have only picked a few whose works appeal to them. If you weren’t picked as well, it does not mean you haven’t written a great piece. The reason is simple: either you weren’t chosen because the mentors allowed to choose more than a mentee or your work didn’t appeal to their own subjectives. Do not relent in your search for a mentor and representation. Every piece is great and unique and you only could have written that. It sure will appeal to another mentor and agent. After the SUBMISSIONS I took up another piece, wrote it and still rewriting it. I never waited for Pitch Wars announcement before doing so. Many of us did. We will be chosen someday, too.

    To the would-be mentees, my biggest congratulations to you guys. To write to be able to draw a mentor’s interest is not a walk in the park. We all were neck and neck with you in the “Wars” but you ended up being chosen. I wish you all the best of luck in your quest to be greater in this path. A path where there’s no victor and no vanquished. We are only poised to expressing the human mind in the most creative form. One love!

  • Claudia LeBoeuf says:


    I just wondered why mentor Michael Chorost wasn’t on the list above. He was one of my choices to submit to.

    Thank you.

  • Jon Gibbs says:

    Congratulations to all the chosen ones, and a big ‘Thank you!’ to all the mentors for their hard work, sifting through the entries, and of course, the hard work still to come 🙂 🙂

  • Ona Panimi says:

    I was not chosen as a mentee, but I’m grateful for Pitchwars. Preparing for it made me a better writer. Congrats to the chosen.

  • Michael J Bowler says:

    Congratulations to all the 2919 mentees!

We're thrilled at the different ways those in our Pitch Wars community are giving back—and we encourage them to do so. However, please keep in mind that Pitch Wars is not affiliated with any of these various contests, promotions, etc., including those of our mentors and mentees. Promoting any such opportunities via our social media channels doesn't imply endorsement or affiliation. We encourage you to do your research before participating.

Pitch Wars takes a stand. ANTI-BULLYING. Click here to review our policy

Pitch Wars 2021

Blog Archives

Blog Categories

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.