S-3: Adult Fiction/Cozy Mystery: DEAD OVER HEELS IN ITALY

Bridget Staroscik O’Reilly Title: DEAD OVER HEELS IN ITALY Genre: Adult Fiction/Cozy Mystery Word Count: 70,000 Pitch: All Tuesday wants from Italy is a great article on the evils of S0/HiP Travel. Then she meets a handsome Italian man. The only problem: Mr. Gorgeous is a cop who’s convinced Tuesday’s a murderer Excerpt: When I first saw the Villa Macabre I said it looked like a great place for a murder. This would come back to haunt me later but at the moment they achieved the desired effect. That is to say they irritated the people I was traveling with. I know that sounds horrible, and I hope you won’t judge me too harshly for it. In my defense I can honestly say that they really did deserve to be annoyed. My name is Tuesday Drew and I had been on a bus with these people for … well too long: give or take a week. In fairness to everyone involved, traveling for days in a bus full of near strangers isn’t the most relaxing way to see the world. What with the early starts infrequent stops and the inevitable car sickness, this kind of reminds me of those interminable car trips I took as a child. The main difference is that there’s no authority figure with the power to turn the car around if someone doesn’t cut it out. Who knew I would ever miss that? Almost the minute we finished our Welcome Drink people began to eye each other warily. After a couple days, we all began to dread each others’ little quirks. Each new experience brought a greater understanding of the phrase, ‘familiarity breeds contempt’. The dirty little secret about a bus trip, not mentioned in the brochure is this; even if every one of your...

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S-2: YA Contemp: SEEKING MANSFIELD


Name: Katy White 
Title: SEEKING MANSFIELD Genre: YA Contemporary Word Count: 86,000 words Pitch: 15yo Finley longs to claim the spotlight and her best friend’s heart. But when teen megastar Harlan moves next door, can Finley keep her own heart safe? MANSFIELD PARK meets ANNA & THE FRENCH KISS. Excerpt: Finley Price was an idiot. She stared at her computer screen with a dry mouth, absentmindedly rubbing one of the small, circular scars branded into her right shoulder.  The words “Mansfield Theater Youth Application” mocked her in bold font, as if they knew she didn’t deserve the spot.  As if they knew how ridiculous she was to even apply. Yet here she was, her free hand hovering over the mouse.  Like an idiot.  Surely, it wouldn’t hurt to just answer another question.  It’s not like she had to submit the application. So answer something, already.  But a highlighter smudge on her computer desk caught her eye.  She scrubbed at it, trying to get the streak of orange out.  Hmm.  It was stubborn.  She frowned, swiping her thumb across her tongue and trying again. Success! She leaned back in her chair and stretched.  She started to yawn but her jaw cracked.  She winced and sat stark upright.   How could you apply for this? she asked herself, hearing Nora’s voice in her head.  Is this how you repay your godparents?  It isn’t enough that you sleep under the Bertrams’ roof and wear their clothes and eat their food?  You would neglect everything you owe them to chase some childish little dream?  Have you forgotten how they saved you?  Finley massaged her jaw just below her ear, where it still hurt after all this time.  No, she thought.  No, I haven’t forgotten. Pitch Madness Clue:  She was just about to close her laptop when Oliver’s signature knock at her...

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S-1: MG Contemp: SIDE OUT

Name: Beth Pond Title: SIDE OUT Genre/category: MG Contemporary Word Count 42,000 Pitch:  After an embarrassing video of 13-year-old Cass and her autistic brother goes viral, Cass finds a new school and sport, but as the hits grow, Cass’s past might be revealed sooner than she thinks. Excerpt:  Footsteps. I breathe a sigh of relief when I realize it’s not Mom. It’s just my twin brother, T.J., heading to the bathroom. Mom doesn’t want me checking the video stats. She thinks the fact that I’m transferring schools will make this whole video mess go away. For someone who’s a college professor, Mom really doesn’t get it. Things on the internet aren’t like socks in the dryer. They don’t just disappear when you’re not paying attention. T.J. closes the door, and a moment later, the shower turns on. He then breaks out into his signature chorus: “Go Richard! Go Richard! Sweat…Richard Simmons shaves his legs!” Ugh, I so don’t care about Richard Simmons’ hygiene right now, or ever, but especially not now. R-e-t-a—my finger hovers over the “r” key, but I don’t need to press it. The browser has offered its suggestions. The first is “Retard Fire Drill.” 2,921 views in three months. A wave of hurt rushes over me, making my heart squeeze inside my chest. I click. In the video, T.J. runs erratically down the dimly lit hallway, hands pressed tightly against his ears, wading his way through the sea of students that finally parts to let him swim upstream. His terrified screams and my classmates’ laughter punctuate the silences between the blaring EEERRR, EEERRR, EEERRR, EEERRR wails of the fire alarm. His special ed. aide can’t get to him. That’s when Video Me shouts his name and bolts out of my single-file class line to help. Pitch...

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Pitch Madness – Submission Window is OPEN

The submission window for Pitch Madness is this is now OPEN, and will remain open for 24 hours (3/10 from 12:01AM EST to 11:59PM EST). There will be no cut off number. Everyone who submits during the window will make it into the contest. You will receive a receipt, if you don’t, check with me here on the blog or on Twitter (@brendadrake). Send your entries to brendadrakecontests@gmail.com. For formatting instructions and rules go to this post here. For those of you not familiar with Pitch Madness, it’s a contest where agents compete in a game against their peers for pitches. This time the game is . If you haven’t been a part of a Pitch Madness challenge before, please check out this post here for more information. The submission window is open for 24 hours (12:01AM EST to 11:59PM EST) on March 10. Our slush readers will read through the pitches and pick the top 60 pitches for the agent round starting on March 18. We try to get a good mix of various genres, but the writing comes first. Basically, if the submissions aren’t ready, it’s a pass. Good luck,...

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Pitch Madness – Game Rules and Instructions

Hello my loves! Here we go with the rules of the game, 😉 For those of you not familiar with Pitch Madness, Pitch Madness is a contest where agents compete in a game against their peers for pitches. This time the game is . If you haven’t been a part of a Pitch Madness challenge before, please check out this post here for more information. The submission window is open for 24 hours (12:01AM EST to 11:59PM EST) on March 10. Our slush readers will read through the pitches and pick the top 60 pitches for the agent round starting on March 18. We try to get a good mix of various genres, but the writing comes first. Basically, if the submissions aren’t ready, it’s a pass. So I bet you’re wondering how the agents are going to play the game? Well, here are the game rules for the agents so you all can follow along… Starting on March 18 at 8AM EST through 12PM EST on March 20 the agents will visit the host blogs, read the entries, and enter their crime weapons (requests) for the pitches they want. (See the weapon list below.) All requests (weapons) are partial requests of the query and first 50 pages of the manuscript. If three or more agents request, the partial will become a full request. Each pitch will have a murder clue to solve. All the agents have to do is guess what weapon was used in the crime. Don’t worry, they will be easy to solve. To trump all requests, the agents can also guess which character committed the dastardly deed (see the list of suspects below – hint: the agents are the suspects). The agents don’t have to guess the culprit, just the weapon to enter a request....

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