Our mentors are mentoring, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase starting on February 10, 2021, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2020 Pitch Wars Mentor and Mentee Teams.
Next up, we have . . .
Lynn Leitch – Mentee
Darlene P. Campos – Mentor
Darlene, why did you choose Lynn?
Picking a mentee is very tough. I received tons of beautiful sample pages, so making the choice was much harder than I thought. Lynn made me laugh out loud in her opening pages, which really stuck with me as I narrowed my picks. 2020 has been quite a year, so I was looking for a book that preferably contained laugh out loud humor and Lynn’s work did just that for me.
In 2020, laughter wins. And Lynn, why did you choose to submit to Darlene?
After reading through the Pitch Wars mentor blogs in August, Darlene became a top pick for a few reasons. First, her editorial and writing experience were both extensive. I could tell she would have plenty of wisdom to share.
Second, Darlene said she was looking for a laugh in this difficult year. I’m here for that! While my story has challenging, middle grade experiences, it is meant to be good fun.
Finally, I connected with Darlene’s happy, positive vibe on Twitter. Who can resist happy and positive right now?
Three great reasons! So, Darlene, summarize Lynn’s book in 3 words.
YouTube, cat, rocks
Lynn, summarize your book in 3 words.
YouTube, lies, friendship
I’m imagining cat videos now, and it’s great! Now, Darlene, tell us about yourself. Something we may not already know.
My “boring” bio is that I’m an MG and YA author. I was previously signed with Vital Narrative Press, where my first three novels were released. I’m now signed with Allison Hellegers at Stimola Literary Studio and we are searching for a home my MG historical novel. I also have an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Texas at El Paso where I was taught and advised by Daniel Chacon (author of Kafka in a Skirt) and Benjamin Alire Saenz (author of Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe).
My “not-so-boring” bio is that I’m a cat mom of five cats (!) and they all just showed up at my door during the COVID lockdowns and I couldn’t say no to their cute faces. It was actually good timing because my beloved bunny, Jake, had an incurable genetic disease and had to be put to sleep in May. Days later, the first cat arrived and gave me lots of kisses. Then, the next three came, and the last came about a month ago. I really do miss Jake and these cats have been great company as I work from home and they helped me cope with the grief of missing Jake, too.
I also love studying world religions, true crime cases, WWII history, and genetics. When I’m not working or writing, I can be found scooping my cats’ litter boxes or spending time with my amazing husband.
All the kitties! OK, Lynn, what do you hope to get out of the Pitch Wars experience?
Oh boy, I’m still processing all of my gratitude. Did Darlene really choose me?
Over the next few months, I’ll focus my hope on three things: 1) connecting with other writers (this is already happening thanks to the Pitch Wars community), 2) working my manuscript into pitch-ready shape and 3) absorbing enough community wisdom that I don’t turn into a stress-ball during the Agent Showcase (wish me luck).
And okay, there’s a fourth! I would really love to find my agent at the finish line—someone who wants to champion my work and whose team I would love to join. There, I said it. 🙂
That’s a great list, and welcome to the family! Now, Lynn, tell us about yourself. What makes you and your manuscript unique?
I guess the first thing to know is that I’m Canadian, which might be why it’s hard to answer this question!
OLIVER JOLT IS NOT A YOUTUBE STAR, is my second manuscript. It started with my fascination around what kids do and share on YouTube. My son is an avid gamer and my daughter is no stranger to highly-animated YouTube channels about everything and nothing, all at once. The richness and depth of these worlds is interesting and often very funny to me.
I hope my story allows kids to see themselves, especially the ones who may not have ‘all the things’ their friends have. I hope it gives them a good laugh, too, because we could all use one.
Starting and ending on laughter, love it! Thank you both for taking the time to complete this interview.
Check out Darlene’s latest release, HEAVEN ISN’T ME.
Thank you for supporting our Pitch Wars Teams! The Agent Showcase is February 10-15, 2021. Make sure to stop by then and check out all our mentees’ entries when it opens.