Monday, September 24, 2012

Get Your Pitch On!

Hello querying writers! Exciting news--there's a great new contest starting TODAY!

For Get Your Pitch On, Commissioning and Managing Editor of Hardie Grant Egmont, Marisa Pintado, will be taking pitches both on Down Under Wonderings and on the group blog YAtopia on October 15th. 

Marisa is looking for YA in any genre and is accepting submissions from anywhere in the world. This is your chance to skip the slush pile and put your pitch right under the nose of a fantastic editor. There's even better news - there is no limit on how many requests Marisa will make from the contest. 

Here are the rules:

  • Your manuscript must be complete, polished and ready to query - this means no first drafts or almost-finished manuscripts.
  • It must be YA.
  • Your entry detail needs to include a 50 - 70 word pitch.
  • You can enter more than once if you have more than one complete, polished, ready to query manuscript.
  • Entries MUST follow the formatting guidelines in the example below: 
Name: Sharon Johnston
Email: smjohnston [ @ ]
Country of residence: Australia
Genre: Speculative Fiction
Word-count: 58,000

Pitch: Seventeen-year-old Mishca Richardson is a sleeper soldier with a weak heart. She has no idea that a life saving heart transplant has accidentally triggered her programming. In the search for answers, she discovers the truth and that her creator, Wirth, has classified her remaining “sisters” from her experiment group as defective, scheduling them for termination. Mishca sets out to save them before they’re eliminated.


You might be wondering how this blog fits in. I (and a whole bunch of other blogs you can find here) am helping workshop your pitches to get them in the best shape they can be before October 15! Each entry submitted will get a pitch critique from a participating blog, plus have their pitch posted for other participants to comment on. These workshops start on October 1, but you can send your pitches now to secure your spot with a host blog.

There is no date deadline for the workshops. Each blog has allocated a set number of pitches that they can host and once those spots are full then no more submissions will be taken. 

Important Rule: If you want to participate in a workshop, you must be prepared to comment on at least one other pitch. For each critique you leave in the comments, you get an entry into the drawing to win one of eight 10-page critiques from our contest host Sharon Johnston and workshop hosts Larissa HardestyStephanie DiazCatherine ScullyJodie AndrefskiPaula SangareTalynn and Kaitlin Adams. Please use the exact same name for all of your critiques. The opportunity ends 10/14/2012.

How to submit: Email your draft pitch to, and don't forget to put PitchOn WS and the name of your manuscript in the subject line of your email. Pitches must follow the formatting above.

Draft pitches will be evenly distributed between host blogs. 

What are you waiting for? Start sending your pitches! And also – make sure to use the #PitchOn hashtag on Twitter to follow all the news now and be part of the excitement during the contest.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

YA Misfits Giveaway WINNER!

Thank you all SO much for entering my YAMF Launch Giveaway! I was happy to see that so many of you had heard of Save the Cat, and hopefully the winner will get some good use out of it.

I know you just want to know who won, so let's get to it! I numbered your comments, put them into, and the winner is................


Emily, I am going to tweet you, but if you see this first, go ahead and email me at maggie.bunting (at) gmail (dot) com

Thanks again for entering, everyone, and I'm so glad to see you on board for YA Misfits!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

YA Misfits Giveaway!

So, if you haven't heard, there's a new blog on the block. We're called YA Misfits, and we're a group of YA writers from all across the genre spectrum and all across the world!

To celebrate our launch, we're giving away all kinds of great stuff. On the Misfits blog, you can enter to win a KINDLE (!!!) and the other Misfits are giving away fabulous prizes from books to crits to music and more!

So what am I giving away? Only one of my favorite writing books of all time, plus a critique to help get you going. 

Though Save The Cat is technically a screenwriting book, I think every writer should read it. Something wrong with your pitch? Blake Snyder will give you some hints. Can't figure out why your story is dragging 1/3 of the way through? Check out the famous Beat Sheet. Having problems with an infodump? See the chapter about the Pope in the Pool (seriously!).

One of you lovely readers will win a copy of this book, PLUS (if you need it!) a query critique. 

Why a query critique? Because see, I actually like queries, and you should too. We all know you need a fantastic query to snag an agent, but did you know it's a great plotting tool, too? No matter what stage of the writing process you're in, a query's a good thing to have. And since my query had somewhere around an 80% request rate, I guess I might have some tips to give!

To enter, all you have to do is comment below by 11:59 pm EST on Monday, September 10. (It'd be NICE if you were a follower here and over at YA Misfits--and our Twitter accounts!--but it's not required.) I'll pick a winner and announce it the next day! International entries are welcome!

Oh yeah, and if you haven't done so yet, GO CHECK OUT YA MISFITS! You know you want to.