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Pitch Wars & #Pitmad Success Story with 2017 Mentee Kristy F. Gillespie

Wednesday, 4 November 2020  |  Posted by Rochelle Karina

We love celebrating successes with the Pitch Wars family. YA author and 2017 Mentee Kristy Gillespie shared her Success Story with us. Take it away Kristy!

In 2017, I entered my YA Contemporary manuscript, LUCY COUNTING STARS to Pitch Wars. The day I found out that two mentors had gone to “war” over my manuscript was bittersweet. On one hand, I was so incredibly happy that two amazing mentors believed in my writing, but on the other hand, I was devastated that I couldn’t share the news with my grandmother, who was laid to rest that morning.

Choosing between two successful authors (Lindsey Frydman, author of THE HEARTBEAT HYPOTHESIS, and Colleen Oefelein, author of EERIE) was difficult to say the least, especially on such an emotionally heart wrenching day. But regardless of who I chose, I knew my manuscript would be in fantastic hands. I ended up choosing Lindsey because my manuscript was in need of some romance and she’s the romance queen!

During the 2017 PW Showcase, (my manuscript was #374) I had 4 agent requests, but ultimately no offers. Afterwards, I sent queries to other agents, including Colleen who went on to become an associate agent with Inklings Literary Agency! Colleen requested the full, gave excellent feedback, and suggested an R & R. I revised and resubmitted, but ultimately there was no offer of representation.

In the meantime, I rewrote LUCY COUNTING STARS and wrote another YA novel, SIN QUEEN. I pitched both during #PitMad September 2020:

LUCY COUNTING STARS: For Lucy, an invitation to art school is a dream come true–until she arrives. The invasive exams leave her and her classmates unable to pick up a paintbrush let alone create art. Now her only dream is to survive. #PitMad #YA #MH The Vault of Dreamers X Every Last Word

SIN QUEEN: A sheltered princess is given the chance to become the Queen of Virtue, but to win, she’ll have to compete in challenges that span the 7 deadly sin cities against a sister who would kill for the crown. #PitMad #YA #SPF Four Dead Queens X Three Dark Crowns

When Colleen, who is now an associate agent with The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency, liked my pitch for SIN QUEEN, I was thrilled! After reading the full, Colleen asked to chat with me on the phone. During the phone call, (which was full of laughs) she offered representation, and I didn’t hesitate to say yes!

I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to participate in Pitch Wars 2017 as well as #PitMad September 2020. Thanks to everyone in the PW community- you all rock!

About the Author

Kristy F. Gillespie is a YA speculative fiction author, a middle school librarian, a mom of 2, and an intern at Gargoyle Magazine. She loves books, yoga, and drinks way too much coffee. Check out her YA Dystopian novels and short story collection here:


Amazon Author Page 



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