Thanksgiving is a designated time to remember what we are thankful for in life. For many, it’s having our health to spend time with family and friends while gorging on amazing meals until our stomach feels like it will explode. But there are others who might be joyful they survived a fatal illness to be here celebrating with people they love. Or maybe, there are those thrilled to still have a job, maybe paid a mortgage off, or even happy because they got that iPhone they’ve always wanted.
All of this still holds true amongst this horrible pandemic. We all want to get back to the way life was before this virus, but it sometimes feels like a fantasy with cases starting to soar this season. So, for those that are still having family gatherings, small or large, I pray you stay safe. Wear a mask when required, keep your distance, and taken cautioun before kissing on loved one. (I vote for elbow bumps to be the new kiss!)
As for me, I’d like to thank:
My family and friends who’ve supported me with my writing.
My readers. (Because without y’all, I’d have no reason to have a blog!)
All my critique partners, beta readers, and anyone who has ever glanced at a few pitches/pages/chapters and offered feedback (The list is SUPER long and I LOVE you guys!).
And finally (but not last), to God for giving me the strength to get through each day, especially for 2020! (For numerous reasons, but especially my health.)
I’m sure there are many things and other people I may have forgotten, and ask forgiveness if I have. Everyone in my physical and virtual life are very important to me. Y’all give me strength to become the best me. And yes, you complete me! (Go ahead, grab a tissue.)
Whatever your reason for being thankful today, I wish you the Happiest of Thanksgivings!
Some of the past participants and winners have gone on to getting agents and/or publishing deals. Inaugural winner Lucy Van Smit was swiftly signed by literary agent Sallyanne Sweeney. Jane Brittan attracted a Carnegie Medal nomination for her indie-published debut. Shortlistee Sophie Cameron signed a book deal with Macmillan Children’s after accepting representation with literary agent Hellie Ogden for her YA novel Out of the Blue. Struan Murray signed a six figure deal with Penguin Random House for his novel Orphans of the Tide.
Entry for the award ends November 29, 2020 (and remember, this is UK time zone)! For complete guidelines and entry fee information, go here. As always, good luck!
Faith Pitch is a Twitter pitch event exclusively for faith-based fiction is being hosted by Little Lamb Books on November 12, 2020 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! For complete guidelines, go here. And as always, good luck!
Per the Philadelphia Writing Workshop website, this online writing event (November 14-15, 2020) is a wonderful opportunity to get intense instruction, pitch a literary agent or editor (optional), get your questions answered, and more. Although online, please note that there are limited spots available (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:
A cool twitter pitch party is coming on October 29, 2020 and I’m excited! Author Jason Huebinger is the host of #PitDark. This is one of my favorite contests because it’s strictly for manuscripts with darker elements, which is soooo down my alley. The event is between 8am and 8pm EST. Authors may pitch once an hour per manuscript. Please do not clog the feed by over pitching so agents don’t get frustrated and quit reading.
Hashtags for AGE CATEGORIES
#MG – Middle Grade
#YA – Young adult
#NA – New adult
#A – Adult
Hashtags for GENRES & SUBGENRES
#H – horror
#PH – psychological horror
#GH – gothic horror
#CSH – cosmic horror
#BH – body horror
#CH – comedy horror
#DC – dark comedy
#DR – dark romance
#SFH – science fiction horror
#PNH – paranormal horror
#ZH – zombie horror
#MH – monster horror
#GRH – graphic horror
#MM – murder mystery
#FA – fantasy
#DF – dark fantasy
#T – thriller
#EF – epic or high fantasy
#HF – historical fantasy
#LF – literary fantasy
#AH – alternate history
#PN – paranormal
#PR – paranormal romance
#UF – urban fantasy
#MR – magical realism
#SF – science fiction
#AF – apocalypse fiction
#ML – military science fiction
#PA – post-apocalyptic SF
#CP – cyberpunk
#SFT – sci-fi thriller
#SH – superhero / superhuman
#SO – space opera
#DS – dystopian
#SP – steampunk
#TT – time travel
#WW – weird west
#SPEC – speculative fiction
#NF – non-fiction
For complete rules, go here. (Note: If your curious about previous agent, editor, and film company participation, there is a link on this page.) As always, good luck!
In just a few days, #PBPitch will begin for picture book authors and illustrators. The event will be on Thursday, October 29th, 2020 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST. For those wanting to participate, here are the rules:
*Pitch your PBs on twitter using #PBPitch. *Pitch manuscripts only ONCE in the morning and ONCE in the Evening. (Once before 2pm and once after.) *If you are an author/illustrator, you can attach an image to your PB manuscript pitch. *Include Subgenre # if it applies. #F=Funny #CD = Character Driven #NF = Nonfiction #C= Concept #L= Lyrical #I= Interactive #FT=Fairy Tale/Folk Tale
Only agents and editors should favorite a pitch. If they do, be sure to do your research before submitting (as anyone can troll the feed). For complete details, go here. And as always, good luck!
Agents and editors are taking live pitches on the SavvyAuthors blog! What you will need is a three line pitch (unless stated differently on their personal pitch page). Be sure to state the title, genre, word length, and your author name. Then post your pitch below that information. The format should look like this:
Agnes plays pretend in an old manor to keep her father’s memory alive and learns she must solve the murder of an eight-year-old ghost—daughter of Franz San Galli, the inventor of the radiator. Her non-believing brother wants her to grow up but she must convince him to acquire his help. After all, it’s not safe to play in secret passages and hidden rooms when a sinister specter threatens her.
Be sure to read the guidelines thoroughly before pitching. And don’t forget to research each editor/publisher and agent to make sure your manuscript fits their wish list. To pitch editors/publishers, go here. To pitch literary agents, click here. And don’t delay! The Pitchfest runs October 28-30, 2020.
The search for diversity within books has increased, not just with secondary characters but main characters. The world wants to see a fabulous palette of colors and cultures among the stories they read and the publishing industry is responding! This prompted literary agent Beth Phelan of Galt & Zacker Literary Agency to create DVpit.
According to the site, #DVpitis a twitter event created to showcase pitches about and by marginalized voices. This includes (but is not limited to): Native peoples and people of color; people living and/or born/raised in underrepresented cultures and countries; disabled persons; people with illness; people on marginalized ends of the socioeconomic, cultural and/or religious spectrum; people identifying as LGBTQIA+; and more.
The next event will spread over two days
October26 will be for Children’s & Teen Fiction/Nonfiction (picture books, chapter books, graphic novel, middle grade, young adult).
October 27 will be for Adult Fiction/Nonfiction (all genres, commercial and literary).
October 27 Artists and Illustrators are included on this day using #DVart
Each day the event will run from 8am-8pm ET using the hashtag #DVpit. Be sure and pitch your manuscript on the correct day because agents/editors will search the feed on the specific day of the category and genres they represent/acquire. And finally, make sure you follow the guidelines for pitching.
L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers and Illustrators of the Future contest entries ends on September 30, 2020. So, hurry and get your submissions in.
Writers L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Contest is an opportunity for new and amateur writers of new short stories or novelettes of science fiction or fantasy. No entry fee is required. Entrants retain all publication rights. All awards are adjudicated by professional writers only. Prizes every three months: $1,000, $750, $500, with an annual grand prize: $5,000 additional! If you have not read the contest rules, please click here before submitting. To enter, go here.
Illustrators L. Ron Hubbard’s Illustrators of the Future Contest is an opportunity for new science fiction and fantasy artists worldwide. No entry fee is required. Entrants retain all publication rights. All judging by professional artists only. $1,500 in prizes each quarter. Quarterly winners compete for $5,000 additional annual prize! If you have not read the contest rules, please click here before submitting. To enter, go here.
Every writer has a dream of seeing their manuscript published. To hold the bound pages and sniff the fresh ink would bring a euphoric state of mind. Those who’ve never slaved over writing a manuscript may not be able to relate.
Then there is the ultimate dream the dream of having your book optioned for a movie! I’m talking the double payday. During a break in my “binge blog pre-scheduling”, I surfed the net to see how many books for children have actually made it to the big screen. Here is a list of just a few:
The Fault in Our Stars
My Dog Skip
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
If I Stay
A Monster Calls
Diary of a Wimpy Kid
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
The Book Thief
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
The Chronicles of Narnia
The Hunger Games
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
And so many more.
I perused to see what was interesting about the books, meaning I read a LOT of opening pages on Amazon and book blurbs (for the books I haven’t read yet). The honest truth is what we’ve all heard so often. You just need a damn good story! (And, of course, good writing skills and voice.)
It’s an interesting list, and it’s not absolute. If you want to check other stories that have made it to the “big screen”, go to this Wikipedia link. Some books I’ve listed are not on the Wikipedia site yet though. But have fun reading, or watching (if that’s what you choose), about the ones that are there.