Wednesday, March 27, 2013

#PitMad is coming in just a few short days! Need help with your pitch?

Hey guys and dolls! 

Brenda Drake's #PitMad is fast approaching! 


I've come up with four pitches, based on feedback from here on the blog,  feedback from my awesome CPs, and feedback from my super-duper TwitWits friends. 



I'd love to know your thoughts, and I'd also love to help you if you need help with your pitches! 



So, post your Twitter pitches here in the comments and I'll see if I can be of any service. 

ALSO, if you see someone's pitch you can help with, PLEASE CHIME IN! 


To get things going, here are my four pitches (I will rotate them throughout the pitch fest):

1)  To prevent turning into the Beast of fairytale lore, 17yo Holland must fall in love. Too bad she's the school's outcast pyro.  YA

2)  17yo Holland has no memories of torching her ex's home or poisoning her BFF, but she can't deny it as she morphs into the Beast. #PitMad YA

3)  17yo Holland doesn't recall torching her ex's home or poisoning her ex-BFF. But becoming a Beast from lore forces her to wonder. #PitMad YA

4)  17yo Holland doesn't plan to torch her ex's home, poison her ex-BFF, or become the Beast from fairytales. But that's what happens #PitMad YA

69 comments:

  1. Great pitches! I really like your second one--it flows really well and I like the twist on the Beast. Very cool. :)

    Here's mine:

    YA: After accidentally killing Hailey with a kiss, Cade must learn to fight new instincts to kill again before the body count rises. #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I LOVE the sound of this story! My only confusion is that he *accidentally* killed Hailey, but then he has to fight new instincts. How did it go from accidental to instinctual? Could you say something like this?:

      After accidentally killing Hailey with a kiss & igniting new killer instincts, Cade must fight to keep the body count from rising #PitMad YA

      (That is exactly 140 characters, but not sure if it works for your story. Just my two thoughts.) :-)

      Delete
    2. Great suggestion! I'll play around with that. Thanks! :)

      Delete
  2. I love the first and second pitches! Here are mine:

    When two boys she’s babysitting vanish, 16yo treespeaker Minna must race to develop her powers before everyone is Erased YA F/SF #PitMad

    In SilCorp’s pristine Emerald District, 16yo amateur photographer Minna discovers a dark secret: people are being erased. YA F/SF #PitMad

    Dark City meets Pleasantville: When two boys vanish, 16yo treespeaker Minna must decipher the visions before everyone is Erased #PitMad

    16yo photographer Minna’s a treespeaker. Corrin's a low district thief. Together can they keep those they love from being Erased? #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Carissa! I LOVE the "Dark City meets Pleasantville" concept!

      My only issue with your pitches, is that I don't have any idea what a treespeaker is. Is this something you've made up, or if I read more SF/F I'd know about them? This question leads me to wonder what agents will think when they read the pitches. Will they be curious and request, or confused and ignore? Or will they know what a treespeaker is because they work in the SF/F genres? Can you describe Minna as something else, for the pitch only?

      Then as far as other things go, I don't know what Erased means (obviously I get what it means, but I think for the pitch it should have more clarification), and I don't feel like we know enough about Minna's visions.

      Also, to save space, I don't think we need to know that she's an amateur photographer.

      As it stands, though I love the comparison mash-up you hinted to, I'm confused about treespeakers (What/who are they?), Erased (Why capitalized? Also, who/what will do the erasing?), and the visions (What are they?).

      So, going off of your examples only, here are a few suggestions. Maybe something will trigger an idea, or you can just ignore them completely. lol ;-)



      Dark City meets Pleasantville: 2 boys vanish, forcing 16yo Minna to decipher her visions before the government erases anyone else #PitMad YA

      16yo Minna's visions reveal a dark secret: those in control of Emerald District are erasing it's inhabitants for crowd control. YA #PitMad

      Can a 16yo treespeaker and a lowly thief unite to save their people from being Erased? Minna and Corrin are about to find out. #PitMad YA

      Delete
    2. Hi Carissa

      I definitely love these 2:

      Dark City meets Pleasantville: When two boys vanish, 16yo treespeaker Minna must decipher the visions before everyone is Erased #PitMad

      16yo photographer Minna’s a treespeaker. Corrin's a low district thief. Together can they keep those they love from being Erased? #PitMad

      and I like this one that Jessa came up with:

      Can a 16yo treespeaker and a lowly thief unite to save their people from being Erased? Minna and Corrin are about to find out. #PitMad YA

      Delete
    3. THANK YOU! This is great feedback!

      I'll definitely think about using a couple pitches without the treespeaker complication! It's just that she can understand/use the language of trees, but you're totally right, it's likely an unnecessary complication.

      *runs back to drafting table*

      Delete
  3. #3 ftw! Definitely keep rotating them.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you for doing this! Would love to get your feedback! Thanks!! :)

    A transplant leaves Zoe w/a dragon shifter’s heart.Shy,she begins online flirting, but the boy she’s into is her donor & a girl #NA #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I reworded it just a tad:

      After a transplant gives Zoe a dragon shifter’s heart, she learns that the guy she's in love with online is her donor...& a girl. #PitMad NA

      (Just my two cents.) :-)

      Delete
    2. Your two cents rock! Thanks, Jessa!! :)

      Delete
  5. I like #1 the best followed by maybe #3.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hey everyone! I'd love some help with my pitch:

    Bart is sprung from hell, forced to find a deadly relic with a suicide victim, making him question life as a well-dressed demon #pitmad #na

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Ryan! I played around with the wording a bit, but feel free to ignore my suggestions! :-)

      Freshly sprung from Hell, paired w/ a suicide vic, & forced to hunt a deadly relic, Bart misses his life as a well-dressed demon. #PitMad NA

      I also removed the hash tag from NA because you don't need it for this, and it freed up a character. ;-)

      Delete
    2. Well-dressed demon Bart is sprung from hell and paired with a suicide victim to find a deadly relic - just a regular Tuesday! #pitmad

      Now of course I embellished but that was to show that you could add something else to make it really snap. I feel like I need to know a little more. Love the part about the well-dressed demon (thus why I lead with it!). It made me think of this snazzy dressed demon from Buffy:)

      Delete
  7. Hi everyone!

    Ryan Hill, I agree with what Jessa suggested for you. It flows really well.

    Karen, I think Jessa was spot on with her suggestion to you. Sounds wonderful!

    Carissa, hi again! I still think your pitches are great, but I'm really liking your Dark City meets Pleasantville one. It really gives the biggest picture of what you seem to be trying to convey. Does that make sense?

    Jessa, I really like your pitches. #1 & #4 are my favorites. And your advice to the others seems to make so much sense, so I'd love your feedback on mine. Also, this is my first contest, so I'm not sure how to go about it. Any advice on how often to tweet? I plan on rotating my best ones, but I don't want to overdue it and annoy everyone. And, does the WF/HF clearly speak Women's Fiction/Historical Fiction to you or should I fix that? Here are my pitches and thanks so much for this!


    Katya never told anyone what she had to do to survive Ukraine’s Famine, but her great-granddaughter is starting to remember. WF/HF #PitMad

    As a teen, Katya survived Ukraine’s Famine but she paid a high price. Now she needs forgiveness before her guilt consumes her. WF/HF #PitMad

    Something has awakened in Summer that she can’t explain or ignore. She
    must find resolution, or lose herself completely. WF/HF #PitMad

    1930’s: Ukraine’s Famine kills millions & deeply scars the survivors. 2010: 23yo Summer needs to know why she has those scars. WF/HF #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Erin!!! I'm so excited about pitching this MS!! :D

      Delete
    2. Hi Erin! I try to aim at pitching every half hour or so, not to overdo it with more than twice an hour. I would stick to just HF if you're low on space or can use the space for more detailing, otherwise, use both!

      As far as pitches go, I like #4 the best. But I wonder, is this dual POV? If not, you need to focus on just ONE protag--either Katya or Summer.

      Delete
  8. Hi guys! Here is my pitch:

    NA: Cailynn has a face that she doesn't recognize and a memory that is fading fast. With only 28 days to live, who can she trust? #PitchMAD

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe, Cailynn has a face she doesn't recognize, a faded memory, and only 28 days to live. Who can she trust?

      Delete
    2. I'm not feeling the urgency. Why does she only have 28 days to live? How does she know that if she has no memory? Try amping up the tension a bit:

      Waking up with amnesia, 22yo Cailynn discovers she has 28 days to live. Will the mysterious doctor save her, or _____? #PitMad NA

      With a face she can't recognize, memory loss, and only 28 days to live, Cailynn must ____ or ____ will happen. #PitchMAD NA

      Basically this formula: MC must do X and X or Y will happen. Make sense?

      Also, could you say amnesia to save on character space? And, a teeny little tip: put NA in the back, so you don't use a colon. Saves one character! lol

      Delete
  9. I like one and four best. However, I'm not too thrilled about the last sentence of either. The last sentence for number one is a little choppy and it raises more questions than it answers. IMHO,the ending needs to be stronger, something to seal the deal. Like 'too bad she killed the only person she ever loved'. I don't really know the twist of your story, but that last sentence would be a great place to hint at it.

    Option 4: But that's what happens... it doesn't seem like a full thought to me. I feel like there was supposed to be more, but you ran out of characters.

    I'm not a huge fan of the second and third because of what comes after the comma. I don't know if she's like the Incredible Hulk or kinds schizo. If she burned her bf's house down and poisoned her best friend, isn't she turning into/hasn't she already turned into the beast. And if she can't remember doing those things (which I'm assuming she did as the beast) how does she know she's turning into it.

    Okay, hopefully that wasn't too confusing. I know there isn't a lot of space to pitch your story, and from what I've read, you have a great concept. But you will be one pitch in a sea...a stampede of other pitches. I think you have a great start, but I think the second clauses of 2 and 4 and the second sentence of 1 and 4 need to be made as strong as the beginning.

    That being said, you advice on my pitches would be greatly appreciated. (I'm terrible at being critical of my own stuff.)

    1. XMEN meets Innocent Voices: The horrors of civil war are revealed when Max is pitted against family in a battle for survival. #pitmad YA

    2.(YA) Abolishing magic means freeing the giants & letting the world die. But it also mean getting back at those who left Max for dead #pitmad

    Just threw these together a few hours ago. Tear them apart.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like them both, and don't see much to change. I switched the second one around a bit (got reid of the parenthesis), and changed "get back at" to "REVENGE" ... much more power and urgency in that word (IMO).

      Abolishing magic means freeing the giants & letting the world die. But it also means revenge on those who left 16yo Max for dead. #pitmad YA

      Delete
    2. Thanks a bunch. You're awesome.

      Delete
  10. This is my first #pitmad and first pitch! I'd love any help!

    17 yo Carrie doesn't believe in ghosts, until she falls in love with one--and opens a century-old rift to Hell in the process. YA Pararom #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I actually love this pitch! Hmmm. I plugged your pitch into twitter and would suggest leaving off the Pararom part - I think its obvious anyway.

      Delete
    2. I LIKE it too! =) It's great as is! xx

      Delete
    3. Thanks! I came up with another one, does this one sound as good?

      17yo Carrie knows 2 things: Lucas isn't human & she's in love w/ him. And that's when all hell breaks loose...literally. YA #PitMad

      Delete
    4. I like the first one the best, and you're right up my ally with the ghostly romance! :-) (EVER is based on the same thing!)

      I don't like the second one as much because it reminds me of TWILIGHT. lol (The whole "Of two things I was sure, blah blah" part of Bella's narrating.) BUT, that could just be my perception.

      I played with the wording a bit if you want to switch it up:

      17yo Carrie doesn't believe in ghosts--until she falls in love with one, accidentally opening a rift to Hell in the process. YA #PitMad

      OR:

      17yo Carrie doesn't believe in ghosts--until she falls in love with one, accidentally opening a gateway to Hell in the process. YA #PitMad

      (switched 'rift' with 'gateway')

      Delete
  11. Hi Jessa!
    Forgot to comment on your pitches. I like 1 and 3.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hi Jessa! #1 and #4 are my fave of your pitches!! Good luck! :D

    ReplyDelete
  13. Comment for Joanna DeLooze, who was unable to post here for some glitchy reason (shame on you, Blogger!):

    #pitmad YA Idyllic life shattered by invading refugees, Azura & friends battle forced marriage, torture when trying to reclaim island home

    #pitmad YA Tortured, forced into marriages by invading refugees, traditions & religion denied, Azura & friends battle to regain island home

    Please share your feedback!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Joanna: I like the first one! And you can even take out the word "when" if you want to free up some space.

      Delete
    2. I actually like the second one better. But I agree with Danica, take out the "when" in the first one.

      Delete
  14. This is my first #pitmad too - so let me know what you think!

    Peggy’s father abducts her, takes her to forest and says rest of the world has disappeared. She isn’t seen again for another 8 years #pitmad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What about this?

      Missing for 8yrs, 16yo Peggy learns her dad's been lying all along. The rest of the world isn't dead ... she's been abducted. YA #pitmad

      Delete
  15. 13yo witch brings back boy crush as a zombie.Now they’re on the run from a govt. agency that wants them for their zombie experiments.#pitmad

    And

    15yo book nerd Evan's BFF is shot with Evan's gun. Now he's on the run trying to find the killer before the killer finds him. #pitmad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know your character's name, or if this is YA or MG. I think to connect with a pitch, the name must be there. I also think that with a protag on the cup of MG or YA, you should include that info. (IMO)

      13yo witch, Lucy, revives her crush as a zombie. They're now running from govt. agency that wants them for zombie experiments. #pitmad MG

      And your second one is great! No changes that I can see.

      Delete
  16. Oh, I prefer #4 of yours Jessa.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Here's my first attempt:

    Naieve 16yo Aria must mature into a strong, monster-battling, single mom. YA Contemp re-imagining of Ariadne myth. TEEN MOM w monsters #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love your premise (Ariadne is a character in EVER--named after the Greek goddess!) ... my only thoughts are that your telling us what your book is like, not pitching us your actual plot.

      How about working on upping the tension/urgency?

      Naive 16yo Aria must mature into a strong, monster-battling, single mom ... OR THIS BAD THING WILL HAPPEN. #PitMad YA *SF/F (*if you want to include the genre)

      Delete
  18. Jessa,
    I like #1 personally =) Then, #4 second.

    I've never boiled mine down this much & it is HARD. I guess I'd have to say mine would be:

    1) "Overnight, 17yo Grey goes from grieving teen to Guardian of a passage between earth & Neverworld. IF she can find the key first! #PitMad YA"

    OR

    2) "17yo Grey has a few secrets. When her grandma's killed, she must accept her Guardianship, learn to control fire & trust in love. #PitMad YA"

    OR

    3) "3 friends +1 night jailed = 17yo Grey discovering destiny as Guardian over unmanifested souls. Born to protect, dying for revenge #PitMad YA"

    Oy vey! =) What do you think? Or scrap all 3 and go back to drawing board?
    Colleen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really like the first one! Maybe leave out "first". That's kind of implied.

      Delete
    2. Good point & thank you! It's actually if she can find the key BEFORE her new enemies do...but I can't fit that in there, of course! =) Haha!

      Delete
    3. From grieving teen to Guardian of a passage between earth & Neverworld ... IF 17yo Grey can even find the key #PitMad YA

      That leaves you with 20 extra characters to play with, just by rearranging the order of words and removing "overnight."

      Delete
  19. I have quite a few pitches, but I'll only post a few here. What do you all think?

    Those loyal mourned, and those against rejoiced. The president is dead, and his children are alone. YA dystopian #pitmad

    An anxiety-ridden leader and a suicidal soldier are the only ones who can win the 10-year-long war. YA dystopian. #pitmad

    Crumbling government, corrupted leaders, and two young people who can win the war, but have no idea how. YA dystopian #pitmad

    Taylor hates death, but can't escape it. Benji loves her, but wishes he didn't. Rensco must get his retribution. YA YA dystopian #pitmad 

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know why name came out that way...

      Delete
    2. That's so weird! Silly Blogger.

      My only thought is that you're wasting space with the word dystopian. All you need to say is YA. Especially since dystopian is one of those that agents occasionally shy away from (like my baby, paranormal).

      I'd remove dystopian and see how you can use that space for more detailing and urgency.

      Delete
  20. Wow these are great pitches (files away to help improve my sorry attempts). I love the idea of using the Twitter restrictions to hone pitches. Must try it! :) Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Maybe I need some more spice? Not for sure if this one is working? Any help is greatly appreciated:)

    #PitMad Bricyn is a bounty hunter looking 4 Nikki who traded places w/April in the witness protection program. The killer is after all 3 #YA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 17yo Bricyn-a bounty hunter-hunts 2 girls who switched places in the witness protection prog, while a killer hunts all 3 of them. #PitMad YA

      Delete
    2. Thanks Jessa! Bricyn is only looking for Nikki. He doesn't know she switched places with April. Nikki doesn't know the killer is after her, who is really after April. When the killer finds out, he decides to take out all 3.

      Delete
    3. Hmmm. I see. Unfortunately, too many names/details makes a pitch confusing. I say leave it out--you want the requests, and confusing the agents won't get that. Once they start reading, they'll figure out the more intricate plot points, you know?

      Delete
  22. I think I am stuck in generalities. Would love some help. Let me know if any of these sing.

    Angry and alone, Alex must forgive her father who abandoned her in order to love a man who is just like him. WF #PitMad

    A bitch with abandonment issues thanks to her father, Alex must forgive him in order to have a chance at love in the future. WF #PitMad

    Alex spent 23 years learning not care any more, but her dad shows up and offers her a life she didn't know she wanted. WF #PitMad

    She has every reason to hate her father, but that doesn't mean she has to. Alex needs to let it go or risk being alone for life. WF #PitMad

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. None of them are really grabbing me. I like the first one the best, but I'm torn. If her father is such an asshole, and he abandoned her, why would she want to fall in love with someone just like him? Even more so, why would WE root for that? Do you know what I mean?

      The third one makes it seem like this is a story focused on a woman and her father. If it is, that works, if not, we need to bring the focus back to Alex and her journey.

      Delete
    2. I know. I agree. He's not an asshole, he had a good reason to abandon her, but I thought if I reveal that it turns the focus on him and the story is more about her learning to let it go and be grateful getting a second chance with him because of the guy who is like her father.

      I need to start all over again. Hopefully I can come up with something before the end of PitMad. thanks. Jessa.

      Delete
  23. Serebat isn’t having an affair with her sis’ husband – worse. She’s recovering his memories – a crime in Qara. #YAFantasy #Uzbek #PitMad

    Thank you Jessa!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or this version:

      The only seer who can help Serebat master her Sight is the most feared man in Qara – the Conqueror. #PitMad #YA Uzbekistan Fantasy

      Delete
  24. Here are three of mine, all historical, of course.

    Jakob DeJonghe plots revenge after his father’s murder in WWII Holland, but is set back by a serious injury and unexpected love.

    Young immigrant K√§tchen will do anything to be a real American girl in 1938—except compromise her religious faith.

    Lyuba Zhukova and Ivan Konev deal with emotional turmoil and civil upheaval during the Russian Civil War and immigrant life in 1920s NYC.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Great Job! I am loving your advice. What would you have done to mine?

    A time-traveling woman is stalked through past lives by someone close to her - a psychopath set on possessing her heirloom. #pitmad Thriller

    Cursed by a family heirloom, a young woman finds herself chased through time pitted against a murderous soul eager to possess her.#pitmad FA

    A time-traveling woman is stalked through past lives by someone close - a psychopath set on possessing her source of power. #pitmad Suspense

    A woman stalked through time is destined to be killed in each life by someone close. Will she figure out who before he finds her. #pitmad

    ReplyDelete
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