Bringing you a closer look at each Pitch War Team and their project.
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Meet Kris Li, Lori Goldstein, and Chelsea Bobulski
Team Double Play
Lori Goldstein, and Chelsea Bobulski (Mentor), tell us a little about yourself.
Lori: I grew up on Stephen King and Anne Rice. And while I don’t write scary stories, I do love me some vampires (diehard Vampire Diaries fan right here!). Those books influenced me to write what I currently do– contemporary fantasy: a story with a magical or supernatural element steeped in our world. I love writing it and reading it. While my favorite books have some contemporary edge (realistic or fantasy), I read all genres and love unexpected (for me) books (hello, Game of Thrones!). I especially love writing in first person with an element of humor. I like making myself laugh (and hopefully the reader!).
Chelsea: As a writer, I have a soft spot for characters with broken pasts, strange talents, and obstacles they must overcome for a brighter future. As a reader, I devour almost every genre I come across, although my favorites always have a hint of romance and/or magic in them. I’m married to my high school sweetheart and mother to a gorgeous German Shepherd/Lab mix named after an It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia character.
The first thing I tell anyone who asks me about myself is that I am a die-hard Harry Potter fan. So that’s number one. Number two, I love reading contemporary YA, which, consequently, is also what I love to write. My favorite part of writing is discovering my characters and their voices. I’ve just got a bunch of characters running amok in my head, which probably makes me sound crazy, but I’m a writer. These things happen. I sort of think of writing like how the process of dreaming is described in Inception. It’s simultaneously creating a world and discovering it. Writing is like the only thing that consciously lets you do that, which is one of the reasons I love it. Other book things I love: Jane Austen, The Night Circus, The Catcher in the Rye, anything with a sarcastic voice.
Lori and Chelsea, why did you decide to participate in Pitch Wars?
Lori: This is my third year as a mentor. Though I applied in 2012, I wasn’t chosen (which just goes to show, you never know where your writing career may lead). But feedback I received that year was instrumental in me changing my opening pages to secure an agent less than two months later. This is why I love mentoring in Pitch Wars and why my goal is to give all writers who apply feedback, which I’ve managed all three years. I have a background in journalism, nonfiction writing and editing, as well as copyediting. I offer editorial services for manuscripts (Check it out here!), and I love putting those skills to work in Pitch Wars.
Chelsea: I’ve been wanting to participate as a mentor in Pitch Wars every since I was a mentee in 2012, and I’m so happy it worked out this year! I’m delighted to be co-mentoring with my good friend and critique partner, Lori Goldstein.
Kris, why did you decide to participate in Pitch Wars?
For a chance to get real feedback on my MS and also to dive in to the writing world on social media. It is a great world. Also to be brave about my writing for once. I’m afraid to show anyone anything I write, so this was kind of my exposure therapy.
Lori and Chelsea, what are you most excited for?
Lori: To see Kris’s manuscript, already fantastic, reach that next level that I know will secure interest from agents and publishers whether in the showcase or at a later stage. She’s so open to feedback and so excited to share this story that it is contagious. She’s the perfect mentee!
Chelsea: I’ve been so excited about the entire process of Pitch Wars, being able to read such incredibly talented submissions and getting to meet so many wonderful people in the writing community, but I would say I am most excited about the fact that I get to read Kris’s amazing manuscript as many times as I want! *pets the precious* *cackles maniacally*
Kris, what are you most excited for?
More like who I’m most excited for, which is the main character of my novel. I’ve been writing Marnie’s story since I was eleven, and I have so many old finished and abandoned drafts that I can’t even read without crying for how bad they are. I’m excited that I get to work with Lori and Chelsea to help Marnie’s story be the best it can be. (They’ve already given me such great feedback!) Also I’m excited for the chance to get agented. *crosses fingers*
Kris, describe your novel in 3 words.
The Sandlot, feminized
Lori and Chelsea, describe your mentee’s novel in 3 words.
Lori: Baseball. Friendship. Girl Power (does that count as one word?)
Chelsea: Sassy. Heartwarming. Hilarious.
Check Us Out …
Kris Li, Mentee
Kris writes mostly contemporary YA, but has dabbled in fantasy, dystopian, and various other who-the-hell-knows-what genres. To be honest, she has lots of characters running amok in her head, and she just does what they tell her to do.
Basically she’s all about voice and characters. Her favorite thing about writing is discovering a new character and learning what his/her voice is. Usually they’re sarcastic pieces of shit, because she loves, loves, loves writing them. Also, she’s a hopeless romantic. She needs some romance in her stories.
Chelsea Bobulski, Mentor
Chelsea is a YA writer represented by Andrea Somberg of Harvey Klinger, Inc. She was born in Columbus, Ohio and raised on Disney movies, 1950’s musicals, and Buckeye pride. She graduated from The Ohio State University in 2010 and promptly married her high school sweetheart. She has a soft spot for characters with broken pasts, strange talents, and obstacles they must overcome for a brighter future.
Lori Goldstein, Mentor
Lori is the author of the Becoming Jinn YA contemporary fantasy series (Becoming Jinn, available now; Circle of Jinn, May 17, 2016).
Circle of Jinn, the sequel to Becoming Jinn, will be released by Feiwel and Friends/Macmillan on May 17, 2016.
It is available for preorder now.
(Writers who preorder Circle of Jinn or buy a new copy of Becoming Jinn online or in stores and send me a copy of the receipt receive a free query or first page critique.)
Being Jinn is Azra’s new reality. As she grants wishes under the watchful eye of the Afrit council, she remains torn between her two worlds—human and Jinn. Soon, secrets spill. Zars are broken. Humans become pawns. And rumors of an uprising become real as the Afrit’s reach extends beyond the underground world of Janna.
Straddling the line becomes impossible. Aware of her unique abilities, Azra must not just face but embrace her destiny. But when the role she must play and those she must protect expand to include a circle of Jinn greater than her own, Azra will be forced to risk everything. A risk that means there’s everything to lose, and at the same time, everything to gain—for herself and her entire Jinn race.
In this dramatic sequel to Becoming Jinn, Azra’s story comes to a heartfelt and thrilling conclusion.