PitchWars Blog Hop Has Begun!

PitchWars Logo

If you haven’t heard, PitchWars has posted the mentor’s blog hops for 2018! Woo-hoo! Can you believe it’s that time of year again? Be sure to check out each mentors blog in the genre you write to see what’s on their wish list. There are 107 mentors total this year. Also, keep an eye on the agent’s page because many have already signed up to participate. The PitchWars staff will update the page as more agents enroll. (So far, 63 as of this moment.) 

Unfamiliar with PitchWars? This is an event where mentors select a mentee’s manuscript to revise to help them get ready for an agent round. That’s right, they help a mentee rework their entire manuscript for free. This is because agented authors and editors want to give back to the writerly community. How exciting is that? There is so much love people!

 

Submissions will be open from August 27, 2018 (midnight EST) and ends on August 29, 2018 (10pm EST). Manuscripts must be completed and polished in order to enter. This is the crème de la crème of writing contests and only happens once a year! So, get those manuscripts edited and select the mentors you want to sub to. You only get to pick four! And as always, good luck!

 

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

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Books I’ve Recently Read

I don’t often blog about what I’ve read, mostly because Goodreads has my list if anyone is interested. But, I realize some of my blog readers may not be part of Goodreads. I will try to do this more often. So, here are a few books I’ve read recently. (And yes, some of them I should have read a long time ago.)

I can’t tell you how long I waited to read this sequel to Caraval! Okay, I waited as long as everyone else had to, but after enjoying the first book in the series, I wanted more right then! And needless to say, Stephanie Garber did not disappoint with this mesmerizing tale filled with magic. Another game of Caraval must be played, avoiding a murderous heir to the throne. And there are people trapped in playing cards! Freaky! But do you finally find out who Legend really is? Well, I won’t spoil it, you’ll have to read Legendary for yourself!

The Dead Key by [Pulley, D. M.]

The Dead Key BY D. M. Pulley was a BookBub deal I decided to buy. I don’t normally read thrillers like this, but I was hoping I’d run into a ghost. (I’m not gonna tell if I did.) The author wove an interesting tale with flashbacks from 1998 to present day. Here are parts of the Blub that got me interested with the story of Iris, whom was doing a renovation study of the Cleveland Bank:

Amid strange staff disappearances and allegations of fraud, panicked investors sold Cleveland’s largest bank in the middle of the night, locking out customers and employees, and thwarting a looming federal investigation. In the confusion that followed, the keys to the vault’s safe-deposit boxes were lost. And then later in the blurb: With each haunting revelation, Iris follows the looming shadow of the past deeper into the vault—and soon realizes that the key to the mystery comes at an astonishing price.

The Witch's Boy by [Barnhill, Kelly]

The Witch’s Boy by Kelly Barnhill had healing witches, talking stones, bandits, and a boy carrying around the soul of his dead twin brother. I couldn’t wait to read the story of Ned to see how he got on with his life as he helps protect magic that bandits want to steal. A fantastic read!

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by [Black, Holly]
I have been a fan of author Holly Black for a while, so it’s no surprise I finally picked up her book The Coldest Girl In Cold TownJust look at that cover, it intrigued me from the start! The blurb sums it best: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a wholly original story of rage and revenge, of guilt and horror, and of love and loathing from bestselling and acclaimed author Holly Black. So, if you LOVE stories about vampires, this is for you!

The False Prince (Ascendance Trilogy Book 1) by [Nielsen, Jennifer A.]

What would you do if someone forced you to fake being the Prince? What fun that’d be, you say? Well, what if that person said you’d die if you didn’t, so now you can’t flub anything up! Too much pressure, right? The False Prince by Jennifer A. Neilsen is full of tension, adventure, lies, and deadly truths that will keep you turning the page! I definitely recommend!

Wait Till Helen Comes: A Ghost Story by [Hahn, Mary Downing]

Wait Till Helen Comes by Mary Downing Hahn was made into a movie a few years ago (which I haven’t watched yet), so I decided I’d give it a whirl. Here is the blurb:

Twelve-year-old Molly and her ten-year-old brother, Michael, have never liked their seven-year-old stepsister, Heather. Ever since their parents got married, she’s made Molly and Michael’s life miserable. Now their parents have moved them all to the country to live in a house that used to be a church, with a cemetery in the backyard. If that’s not bad enough, Heather starts talking to a ghost named Helen and warning Molly and Michael that Helen is coming for them. Molly feels certain Heather is in some kind of danger, but every time she tries to help, Heather twists things around to get her into trouble. It seems as if things can’t get any worse.

But they do—when Helen comes. (Oooo, that sealed the deal for me!)

Deep and Dark and Dangerous by [Hahn, Mary Downing]

Is it no wonder I decided to try another Mary Downing Hahn story, Deep and Dark and Dangerous? After all, If I’m going to write ghost stories, I need to read ghost stories! I’ve decided that the author has a thing with bullies, which at times made this story unlikeable. But I had to know about the girl, the one missing from the photo. “Just before summer begins, 13-year-old Ali finds an odd photograph in the attic. She knows the two children in it are her mother, Claire, and her aunt Dulcie. But who’s the third person, the one who’s been torn out of the picture? ” Could she possibly be the girl named Teresa who drowned under mysterious circumstances, and her body was never found? You’ll have to read to find out.

The Apprentice Witch by [Nicol, James]

As Library Journal put it, there are shades of J.K. Rowling in this story! The Apprentice Witch by James Nicol begins with Arianwyn failing her witch’s assessment and is thrust to a town called Lull to work as an apprentice for six months, then retake her assessment. Of course, she’s worried she’ll fail again, but has more troubles than the test to worry about as she encounters a dangerous infestation of hexes, banished spirits, forest creatures, and her arched-rival showing up.

The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches: A Flavia de Luce Novel by [Bradley, Alan]

When I read The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches by Alan Bradley, I didn’t realize I was reading the 6th book of a nine book series. The story read as a standalone, so if you haven’t read the others, no worries! Though most of the narration felt old school, it was fitting considering the setting was 1951 and during the time of Winston Churchill. Flavia de Luce’s mother had been missing for ten years, but her body had recently been found in a glacier and returned home for burial. And I got delighted when Flavia gets a wild idea to resurrect her mother through some brilliant science research she reads about. (I love that she’s a science geek!) But the story is mostly about her following a trail of clues to discover who murdered her mother. An interesting tale, with some big words. LoL. Totally loved it!

What? You want to know if she resurrected her mother? Puh-lease! You know I’m not gonna tell!

See the source image

And there you have my current list of books. Hope you find one to put on your TBR. Have a great day!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

 

Sourcebooks: Romance Submissions

Sourcebooks

While Sourcebooks only accepts virtually all agented submissions, they’re doors are wide open for romance fiction subs—even from unagented writers! They are acquiring single-title romance fiction for their Casablanca imprint. Some of the subgenres they’ll accept are:

  • paranormal romance
  • romantic suspense
  • contemporary romance
  • erotic romance
  • historical romance (prior to 1900 only)

Please note, this is not an exclusive list as they state they’ll consider all subgenres. The manuscripts they’re looking for should be between 85,000-100,000 words. To get an idea of some things they like, check out a few of their recent authors’ books.

For complete criteria and to learn how to submit, go here. As always, good luck!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

Boston Writing Workshop

Chicago Writing Workshop

Per the Boston Writing Workshop website, this writing event (September 29, 2018) is a wonderful opportunity to get intense instruction over the course of one day, pitch a literary agent or editor (optional), get your questions answered, and more. Note that there are limited seats at the event (200 total). They will inform everyone directly on the website when seats are closed.

Here are a few of this years faculty that will be in attendance:

Since the seats are limited, don’t delay in registering. Have fun and learn lots!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

WORLDCON 76 SAN JOSE 2018

WorldCon76

San Jose, California was selected to host the 76th Worldcon on August 16th through 20th 2018. Worldcon is an annual gathering of science fiction and fantasy fans, writers, artists, musicians, editors, publishers, critics, scientists, and other creators.

GUESTS OF HONOR

  • Spider Robinson is an American-born Canadian Hugo Award- and Nebula Award-winning science fiction author.
  • Chelsea Quinn Yarbro is an American author of science fiction, fantasy, horror, mystery and thriller novels, and winner of Bram Stoker Award for Lifetime Achievement.
  • John Picacio is an American artist specializing in science fiction, fantasy and horror illustration. He has won the Hugo Award for Best Professional Artist twice!

There are over 300 authors, artists, musicians, editors, publishers, critics, and scientists attending. You’ll find David D. Levine, Peter S Beagle, and many more as featured participants! So, you never know who you’ll be having coffee with in the morning. Check out the complete list here.

If you want to go, rooms are filling up fast at nearby hotels. So, hurry if you plan on attending. As always, have fun and happy mingling and learning.

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

PASS OR PAGES CONTEST

 

PASSORPAGES

Operation Awesome is hosting a Pass or Pages this month. For this round, the category is  for Young Adult Contemporary novels. Submissions open between July 9 (6am EST) to  July 11 (6pm EST), 2018 This is an opportunity to get feedback from an agent on your query and first 250 words of your manuscript. Peeps, this is priceless! And as a possible bonus, the agent reserves the right to request your FULL.

The participating agents are:

There will be a form for submissions on Operation Awesome when the entry window opens. For complete rules and previous feedback reveals, go here. As always, good luck!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

 

San Francisco Writing Workshop

Per the website, the 2018  San Francisco Writing Workshop is a wonderful opportunity to get intense instruction over the course of one day, pitch a literary agent or editor (optional), get your questions answered, and more. Note that there are limited seats at the event (200 total). This workshop is a full-day “How to Get Published” writing event in San Francisco, CA on August 25, 2018.

Agents and editors confirmed to be in attendance and/or available to pitch are:

This is a great opportunity, but hurry because seats are going fast! Have fun and learn lots!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

Books I’ve Recently Read

I don’t often blog about what I’ve read, mostly because Goodreads has my list if anyone is interested. But, I realize some of my blog readers may not be part of Goodreads. I will try to do this more often. So, here are a few books I’ve read recently and enjoyed. (And yes, some of them I should have read a long time ago.)

Snow Like Ashes

NOW LIKE ASHES by Sara Raasch. I loved this tale because instead of starting in a world of people showing of their magic, it started with only eight survivors (Winterians) whom had lost there magic (actually they had it stolen). This story is full of dangers and evil politics, and a bit of romance. I think readers of FROST BLOOD will enjoy this

The Delphi Effect (The Delphi Trilogy Book 1) The Delphi Resistance (The Delphi Trilogy Book 2)

THE DELPHI EFFECT and it’s sequel THE DELPHI RESISTANCE by Rysa Walker. It’s no secret I love a story with ghosts involved, but then add magical powers, secret governments, and kids on the run…I’m in! The character Anna, picks ghosts up by simply touching something the spirit has clung to. Then they journey within her until they feel they’ve completed something, but bits of them stay with her after they’ve gone, which is really cool. For example, wouldn’t you love just to suddenly know how to play a piano without ever taking a lesson? There is a third book in this series and I can’t wait to get to it.

King's Cage (Red Queen)

KING’S CAGE by Victoria Aveyard. This is the third book in the RED QUEEN series. And y’all know I’ve already read the first two books. Mare Barrow’s journey continues after discovering new bloods and the war wages on between red bloods and silver bloods. In this story she is prisoner of the boy she once loved and stripped of her magic. I couldn’t wait to see how the story would end and how she’d regain her magic. One thing that has intrigued me throughout the series are the various types of magic in this series, I’m so in love! And lucky for me, the fourth installment came out last month, which means I get to read more about Mare Barrow!

Rise of the Empress (2 Book Series)

FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNS by Julie C. Dao. The story of Xifeng destined to become empress had me WOW’d when I realized the story was darker than I had thought. Her aunt is a witch who has taught her magic, but until she finds herself in the company of the Empress and Emperor does she discover how callous she can be. I’ve never wanted to root for someone who is good and so bad at the same time! I’m crying because I have to wait for the sequel to come out this November. I want it NOW!

The Amulet of Samarkand: A Bartimaeus Novel, Book 1

THE AMULET OF SAMARKAND by Jonathan Stroud. I am a fan of a few of Jonathan Stroud’s LOCKWOOD & CO. series books, so I thought I’d give this a try. The author had me laughing out loud at times. Nathaniel is a magician’s apprentice, but his master seems to be a bit daft. Then Nathaniel gets humiliated by other magicians and his master does absolutely nothing to protect him. So Nathaniel summons the powerful djinni, Bartimaeus, to help him get revenge. Seriously, this is a funny and magical read for kids and adults both.

Off to Be the Wizard [Kindle in Motion] (Magic 2.0 Book 1)

OFF TO BE THE WIZARD by Scott Meyer. What would you do if you found out that a computer program controlled everything you and everyone in the entire world did? Become a wizard, of course! This is another story that had me in stitches! Martin discovers a program that controls what he does, where he is, “when” he is, and how to get there, but it gets him in trouble with the cops, so he does what anyone else would do, he goes back in time and discovers someone thinks he’s Merlin (or rather, is imitating Merlin). But thankfully, Martin finds a wizard who is willing to make him an apprentice. Just know the computer has everything to do with why he’s a wizard. So miscalculate some codes and you’ll appear to hover above the floor instead of standing on the floor. There is so much funny in this story, you have to read it!

The Outsider: A Novel

THE OUSIDER by Stephen King. Okay, I have to admit that this was really, really, really, hard for me to read. I couldn’t stomach the way the young boy died. I put the book down, but would pick it back up again later. I’d put it down, then back up, and so forth, and so forth. What kept me going was my curiosity of how Mr. King would resolve the issue of the murder suspect being in two places at once, and the need to see the true murderer–an evil of no human being–be killed. But reading this story reminds me why I like to read middle grade and young adult novels, the brutality may be insinuated most times, but isn’t described in detail. (I don’t need details, not when it comes to kids being murdered.) So, read at your own risk. You have been warned!

Grayling's Song

GRAYLING’S SONG by Karen Cushman. Well now, when I read the blurb about people turning into trees, I HAD to read to find out how different it might be from a manuscript I wrote regarding the same issue. I’m was thrilled to find a huge difference, so I won’t have to shelf my story! Grayling must find who has stolen her mother’s grimoire and prevent her from turning completely into a tree. Along her journey she finds other witches are turning into shrubbery and their grimoires gone too. She picks up a few unlikely witches to help her along the way. This was an easy read and quick read. I not only enjoyed it but I found myself a new comp title. Woo-hoo!

And there you have my current list of books. Hope you find one to put on your TBR. Have a great day!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

Writers, #FaithPitch is Coming!

A Twitter pitch event exclusively for faith-based fiction is being hosted by Little Lamb Books on June 28, 2018 between 8am –  8pm CST. This is for board books, picture books, middle grade, young adult, and adult fiction that fall under the categories of inspirational, faith-based, biblical worldview, or Christian. Different denominations, ethnicities, a POV in this niche are encouraged. Be sure to use the hashtag #FaithPitch and only pitch 4 times per manuscript during the pitch window. (Maximum of 4 manuscripts are permitted.)

As with all pitch events, any agent or editor can troll the feed. Be sure to do you research before sending off your book baby to them! For complete guidelines, go here. And as always, good luck!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

Florida Writing Workshop

Chicago Writing Workshop

Per the Florida Writing Workshop website, this writing event (August 4, 2018) is a wonderful opportunity to get intense instruction over the course of one day, pitch a literary agent or editor (optional), get your questions answered, and more. Note that there are limited seats at the event (200 total). They will inform everyone directly on the website when seats are closed.

Here are a few of this years faculty that will be in attendance:

Since the seats are limited, don’t delay in registering. Have fun and learn lots!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.