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Pitch Wars Interview with Elise Bungo and her mentors, Dan Koboldt and Michael Mammay

Monday, 10 October 2016  |  Posted by Heather Cashman

PW Interviews

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 on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams.

And now, we have #DreamTeam! . . . 


Elise Bungo – Mentee

Twitter | Website


Dan KoldBlood ?

Dan Koboldt – Mentor

Twitter | Website


Michael Mammay

Michael Mammay – Co-Mentor

Twitter | Website


Elise: Why did you choose Dan and Mike?

Mike and Dan are hilarious. I can roll with anything as long as there’s humor. They also promised explosions – real explosions, not just the manuscript kind. That and pretty much everyone I came in contact with told me I had to submit to Mike. I mean, everyone. Apparently, he’s my inner monologue doppelganger, which is truly terrifying. Maybe this book is a thinly veiled autobiography, and they have already taken over my brain . . .

Mentors: Why did you choose Elise’s ERGO SUM?

Mike: We chose Elise because it was something we thought we could both add to. There’s tons of science, and tons of things that blow up, so it fell right into our sweet spot as a mentor team. Add to that the awesome voice, and we were pretty well hooked.

Dan: The genre was a good fit for us, but the voice is what sold me. It reminded me of Mike’s voice in his 2015 Pitch Wars manuscript, so I knew we’d be great mentors for it. Elise’s positive (on Twitter and in private communications) also worked in her favor. It wasn’t why we chose ERGO SUM, but it helped us feel confident we’d like working with her.

Elise: Summarize your book in three words.

Reverse Turing test

Mentors: Summarize your mentee’s book in three words.

Mike: African Explosion Safari

Dan: Nanobots ruin everything

Elise: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique?

I’m not nearly as interesting as Mike or Dan. My day job is to keep people from making bad decisions, or for those of you who like comps: shrink + economist + professional cat herder. The idea for my book came because my husband made me watch a terrible movie, and I was so annoyed I had to write a novel. I usually write fantasy. This was my first time writing as a 1st person POV guy, which came easier than I thought — though trying to combine some pretty technical science on quantum computing, a thriller pace, and a core question that is rather literary and try to do it justice (i.e. what does it mean to be human and would you know if you know longer were) was a challenge! Luckily, Dan’s a scientist, Mike’s a soldier, and I have psychology degree, so it’s a great match. Most of the book is pure fiction, except the sarcasm. I really am that sarcastic in real life. That and I can do a 7×7 Rubik’s Cube in under ten minutes — a trick I commonly use to get free drinks on airplanes. (A piece of advice — If someone takes the time to tote a massive Rubik’s Cube on a plane, he/she can likely complete it. But hey, I like vodka, so wager away.)

Mentors: Tell us about yourself. Something we might not already know.

Mike: I’m Batman. Wait, you probably knew that. Let’s see…I’m not actually a Peanuts character. You probably knew that, too. Damn. I guess I’m an open book. Everybody knows all about me.

Dan: I dabble in art forgery. Not for profit, of course! I just enjoy painting exact replicas of Impressionist works.


Check out Dan Koboldt’s latest release . . .

The Rogue Retrieval by Dan KoboldtThe Rogue Retrieval (Science Fiction)

When their lead scientist escapes through a portal to a pristine medieval world, a corporation hires the right man to bring him back: a Las Vegas magician.

THE ROGUE RETRIEVAL features cool stuff like military drones, corporate espionage, and high-speed chases on horseback. Learn more.


Publication Date: March 1st, 2016 (Harper Voyager)

Find The Rogue Retrieval on Goodreads



Thank you for supporting our Pitch Wars Teams! And don’t forget to stop by the Agent Showcase starting November 3rd to see how our teams do in the final round.


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