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PitchWars: I love you. I’ll miss you.

My #Pitchwars pitch is up in the Alternates Showcase on Jaye Robin Brown’s Blog, and I feel so incredibly sad that a good thing is coming to an end this week. 

I found out about Pitchwars, hosted by the amazing Brenda Drake and her assistant, Rae Chang, about an hour before they started accepting submissions, and I’m so glad I scurried about to participate. There were many loud voices in my head that said negative things and encouraged me to let the opportunity slide by, and thinking about that now makes me feel so upset. I would have missed out on so much, and I never would have even realized it. Ignorance is not bliss. It’s tragedy. 

Along the way, I got to work with a great mentor, Jessie Humphries, who was extremely supportive and encouraging but also told me what I was doing wrong and how to fix it. That was one of my favorite parts. I really wanted to grow as a writer, but sometimes for growth, you need feedback. It’s incredible how good feedback can change the way you see everything. Give me criticism over compliments any day of the week, because I can actually do something with the first. 

I also got great feedback from two mentors who didn’t select me to their team, Jaye Robin Brown and Lori Goldstein. They were supportive and encouraging throughout the process, which was like getting a dose of the warm fuzzies whenever my internal angst was lurking. 

I know I still have a lot to learn, but I feel like a different writer than the person who entered this contest. I don’t know where I would be with my projects if I hadn’t decided to participate in PitchWars the past couple of months, but I know my writing would be weaker. My query. .  . let’s not even go there. Plus, I would never have met so many great writers who are quickly becoming friends, like Andy Hertzenberg and Amy Trueblood of  #TeamBwords, and I wouldn’t have found my fantastic new CP, Wendy Heard.

There’s also a strong possibility I would have shelved Unauthorized. It makes me feel awful to think it, let alone say it (and typing it apparently makes me cry, although I’m pretending there’s dust in the air). I know mostly writers follow me, and you’re all gasping in horror right now at my lack of faith. It’s only the truth, though. I was strongly considering setting it aside to focus on other stories, accepting that it was just a novel for me, not the world. Now, I’m so happy I didn’t, no matter what happens in the long run, because I knew the story had more potential. I knew I had more potential, and it feels great that I gave us both another chance to try to live up to it. 

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  1. Okay, I’m curious now. I may be the only one not in the know, but I’m going to ask a question. What is #PitchWars? I’ve seen it mentioned, but I am completely unfamiliar.

  2. It is bitter-sweet, isn’t it? We work towards this day and then don’t want it to come, or end at least. But I’m going to be uncharacteristically optimistic here and say that I think all these great new friends will be around for a long time to come. 🙂

  3. I believe in UNAUTHORIZED, and I believe in you! I too am extremely grateful for PitchWars and the opportunity to work with you! Maybe one day I’ll come out yonder in Missourah (that’s how you pronounce it, right?) and hang with you, do a book signing, and not nearly bleed to death on a long empty road with unhospitable folk! xoxo

    • Aw! Thanks! I hope you do swing by, but I call it Missouri. Try not to be too disappointed. I guess I didn’t make the people of my state seem very hospitable in that previous blog post. . . Really they are typically very friendly and helpful. I think those were probably the only 2 people in my neck of the woods who would have left me there to die, and I just have the kind of luck that brought them both to me on the same day at the same time. Go figure. 😉

      Thanks for stopping by, and thanks again for all the support and encouragement! 🙂

  4. Anonymous Anonymous

    I’m still reading UNAUTHORIZED and loving it! Whoever you get to edit it will love you to pieces. You’re a very talented writer and I think after you publish the book, you should seriously think about becoming an editor. You have a gift. ~ Lori Lesko

    • Aw! That is so nice of you to say! Thank you so much for asking to read out of the blue like that after reading Jessie’s blog. That was so great of you! I can’t wait to hear what you have to say once you finish. Be sure to let me know what I can improve!

      Honestly, some part of me would love to be an editor, but I definitely don’t have the credentials for it. 🙂

  5. I am very glad you didn’t shelve UNAUTHORIZED! Pitch Wars has been such a cool experience. Cheers to new friends, polished manuscripts, and being brave enough to put our stuff out there!

    • It was fabulous! Thank you so much for all that you did. It has been a huge step forward for me. It’s nice to be part of a community instead of all by myself in the writing world. 🙂

  6. Congrats in your learning endeavors! Isn’t it great to be able to learn so much? I’ve had others tell me before that it’s okay if I decide to put my current WIP down. Why in the world would I want to do that?!

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