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Pitch Wars Interview with Katharine Manning and her mentor, Shanna Rogers

Wednesday, 19 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 #TeamHatTrick . . . 

Katharine Manning

Katharine Manning – Mentee

Twitter | Website

Shanna Rogers

Shanna Rogers – Mentor



Katharine: Why did you choose to enter Pitch Wars?

Pitch Wars is the best! If you’re a writer, there is really no better opportunity out there. I could not pass by the chance for feedback and support from someone who is further down the path, and invested in making my book better. Also: the community around Pitch Wars is unparalleled.

Shanna: Why did you choose to mentor in Pitch Wars?

I wanted to mentor in Pitch Wars because I was lucky enough to be a mentee last year (working with the fabulous Joy McCullough-Carranza), and I wanted the chance to support another writer the way she supported me. Plus I absolutely love this community, so I jumped at the chance to stay involved!

Katharine: Summarize your book in three words:

Fierce Footwork & Friendship

Shanna: Summarize Katharine’s book in three words:

Footballers behaving badly

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

THE WILDCATS is a middle grade story about a friendship and rivalry on a girls’ soccer team when a new player joins the team. It’s set in the diverse suburbs of Washington, D.C., and has players of different races, ethnicities, and family structures. The main character is African-American, her best friend is Korean-American and has two moms, and the new girl on the team is a recent immigrant from the Czech Republic with a single father. THE WILDCATS stands alone or could start a series.

I am a former soccer player myself, including one ill-fated high school game against Mia Hamm. I couldn’t manage to convince my kids to play soccer, so I took my frustrated aspirations out on the page. My mother/daughter book club also inspired this story, when I noticed that all the girls ever wanted to talk about was friendship. I’m a member of the wonderful group blogs at The Winged Pen and From the Mixed-Up Files of Middle Grade Authors, and also have my own book blog, Kid Book List.

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

Something you might not know: I love to karaoke, but only to old rap songs.

Stuff you might already know: When I wasn’t reading as a kid, I was acting out something I read in a book: starting a babysitters’ club, spying, searching the house for a secret passage, and convincing a neighbor I had an identical twin (I don’t). I‘m still twelve at heart, so writing middle grade was a natural choice.

After receiving my B.A. in journalism, I spent several years acting in Los Angeles before becoming a teacher. You can catch me in the background of dozens of shows, including as a dead body on The Closer (Kyra Sedgwick massaged my feet!) and sporting a spray tan on old episodes of The O.C. I once beat Woody Harrelson in a thumb war.

I live in northern California with my handy husband, hilarious daughter, and an overeager Morkie.


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.

One Comment
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.

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