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 1st-7th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2017 Pitch Wars Teams.
And now, we have . . .
Christina Wise – Mentee
Marie Meyer – Mentor
Christina, why did you choose to submit to Marie?
When I read Marie’s blog, I first loved that she’s been through this before. Any tough edits and darlings I’d have to kill would be met with “I’ve been there. It’s hard. Just do it.” And she’s on her fifth published book. She knows what she’s doing.
Scrolling through her wish list, Contemporary Romance was at the top and the genre she writes in, so I worried my YA Fantasy wouldn’t fit with her tastes. But a few books on her fav YA Fantasy list matched mine so I knew we could at least gush over the love triangle between Tess, Will, and Jem in The Infernal Devices series. And one thing I wanted to work on in my own story is Character, something she does well with in her writing.
Then, I read her bio. She is a mom of two girls (like me) with a full-time job (like me) and still follows her passion for writing. I was in awe. I wanted to sit down with her over coffee and pick her brain. So even though fantasy wasn’t at the top of her wish list, I took a chance.
Marie, why did you choose Christina?
Christina’s story was the one story from all of my submissions that I couldn’t stop thinking about. I loved her premise!
Christina, summarize your book in 3 words.
Gods. Love. Sacrifice.
Marie, summarize Christina’s book(s) in 3 words.
Fun, unique, exciting.
Christina, tell us about yourself! What makes you and your MS unique?
I am a mom and documentary producer. My day starts very much based in reality, using my subject’s words to tell their stories. By evening, I’m reading tales of princesses and fairies to my two girls. Anytime in-between I’m writing my own world, whether it’s based off ancient Greece or a placed in a dark and enchanted forest.
I grew up fascinated with Greek mythology and how humans years ago created gods with a connection to the earth and sea but were essentially flawed beings and full of drama and deceit. With this story, I played with those original myths by putting my character in similar situations only to discover the cruelty of the gods. Through her quest, she learns special powers don’t solve problems, love is worth fighting for, and always listen to your Gram.
Marie, tell us about yourself. Something we may not already know.
I think Reese’s Pumpkins are better than Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
And next, we have . . .
Christine Webb – Mentee
Katherine Fleet – Mentor
Christine, why did you choose to submit to Katherine?
I spent a lot of time going through the potential mentors and making a list of people I liked and why. Every once and a while, I’d come to someone who seemed like a perfect match. In that case, I’d forget about writing down the pros and cons and just put a giant star by his/her name. Katherine was a “giant star” mentor. First of all, she specialized in contemporary YA and was interested in stories about mental illness. I felt my book had a lot of the elements she was seeking (family drama, secret twists, romance, etc). I also appreciated that she was a straight-shooter about what she expected out of the mentor/mentee relationship and what her mentee should expect. I’m not going to say I submitted to her because she loves McDonald’s breakfasts and Say Yes to the Dress, but it may or may not have been a factor. A bacon, egg, and cheese bagel makes any day better. I’m just saying.
Katherine, why did you choose Christine?
I fell in love with the voice in THE ART OF INSANITY. It was funny and fresh, while at the same time dealing with some heavy topics. It needed some work, but I had a clear idea of the revisions required and was so excited by the possibility of helping to shape this story. So, I e-mailed Christine with some suggested changes, just to see if we were on the same page. Her responses and enthusiasm were perfect, and I knew I had to help this book really shine. Readers are going to fall in love with this #ownvoices story about a girl coming to terms with her mental illness and discovering the people and opinions that really matter in life. Oh…and they’re also going to love Petunia, the pug, with her crazy behavior and little squishy face:)
Christine, summarize your book in 3 words.
Bipolar artist discovers
Katherine, summarize Christine’s book(s) in 3 words.
Quirky, unexpected, #ownvoices
Christine, tell us about yourself! What makes you and your MS unique?
My book is unique because it is a book about mental illness designed to make you laugh instead of to make you cry. It might also make you cry…but if that happens, it’s just collateral damage. Sorry about that. I hope you laugh far more often.
The truth of the matter is that mental illness isn’t funny. It’s terrible. Fortunately, people who have mental illnesses do not need to be defined by them. Just like everyone else, they have personalities and dreams and fabulous quirks. The characters in my book who struggle with mental illnesses face many of the same struggles other people have: navigating high school, trying to follow their dreams, handling tricky family situations, etc. Their mental illnesses simply add a layer to what they’re already facing. The goal of this book is to humanize mental illness and realize that while yes, mentally ill people face a specific set of struggles, people really are more alike than they are different. When it comes down to it, life is weird for everyone. We can laugh about that together.
As for what makes me unique: I teach junior high and love it, which people tend to see at either saintly or insane. I lean toward the latter. I love pugs, the British royal family, and McDonald’s breakfast sandwiches (woot!). I believe that a retired lab rat is a good classroom pet. I’m writing this bio in my local hipster coffee shop, which is where I do almost all my writing. When this book sells, I’m going to buy myself tea AND a scone instead of just tea, because I like to dream big like that.
Katherine, tell us about yourself. Something we may not already know.
If you follow me on social media, you may already know the obvious stuff. I’m a Canadian living in the Caribbean. I have three kids, I love to travel, and my YA contemporary debut came out last year from Entangled Teen (thirteen years after I started my first novel!). I’m also a huge fan of binge watching TV shows, and I love going to the movies (it’s my happy place). Something you may not know is that I’ve written seven novels in total. I consider the first three to be ‘practice’ and they’ll probably never see the light of day. The last three are all in various stages of revision and submission, and I hope to get them out to readers soon:)
Our mentors’ latest releases…
I thought I’d live in silence forever . . . and then I met him.
I’ll never be able to hear, but music has always been a source of comfort for me. Rather than listen to the rhythm, I can actually feel the beat pulsing through me. It’s pure bliss. So the moment I saw Thorin playing his guitar, I was mesmerized. I’d never seen anything more beautiful . . . or intimate. I couldn’t tell where his body ended and the song began. He’s everything I need in my life . . . I’m falling fast, hard, and deep.
I want him more than anything. But while I live in silence, Thor lives in secrets. He’s holding something back-something that’s keeping this intensity, this longing from being real. And the silence may be too loud to bear . . .
One summer can change everything…
Haunted with guilt after his girlfriend’s death, Daniel Hudson has no interest in committing to anyone. At the end of the summer, he’ll be leaving Florida for a new start in college. If only he could avoid the mysterious new girl in town, who seems every bit as naive and eccentric as she looks. Trouble is, she’s hard to ignore, with her beautiful piercing eyes, pitiful-looking dog, and unsettling tendency of finding trouble.
Clover Scott lived her whole life off the grid and arrives on the Gulf coast in search of her grandparents. She never expected to nearly drown, or get caught in a hurricane, or fall in love with the boy who rescues her. Now, she has a chance to rewrite her life’s story, to finally fit in somewhere, but Daniel wants answers about her past. When the police start asking questions about the disappearance of her parents, she must make a choice: go to jail or confess her secrets—even if they might destroy her chance at a happily-ever-after.
Thank you for supporting our Pitch Wars Teams! The Agent Showcase is November 1st-7th, and our next #PitMad is December 7, 2017!