Wednesday, November 20, 2013


Let me take a moment to tell you how freakishly excited I am to be a Pitch War mentor this year. The manuscripts, the authors, the agents...just WOW!  Mentor bios and the list of participating agents are being posted today. The rules, the regulations, the how-to's of the submission -- all those goodies can be found on Brenda Drakes blog 

Now comes the hard part, trying to convince a pool of crazy talented writers that I'm the mentor you want.

Who the heck am I

I have a canned bio. It is pretty and formal and makes me look all official. It's on my website should you have ions of time to waste, but here is the real me. 

I live on Cape Cod, land of sun and perpetual traffic. I hate sand, I'm easily irritated by tourists, and I have no tolerance for supermarket parking lots. I am a mom with an insanely organized carpool schedule, a wife to a husband with mad grilling skills, and the proud owner of one rather undisciplined black lab named Orphie. Ohh...and I make the most amazing chocolate cookie dough brownies. And yes, I do send them out to my CP's.

I am a member of the SCBWI, the YA Scream Queens, the Cape Cod Children's Writers and the Horror Writers Association. I am represented by the amazing Kevan Lyon at Marsal Lyon Literary. My YA contemporary, SECRETS SISTERS KEEP, is coming Winter of 2015 from FSG/ Macmillan and my YA Psychological Horror, CREED (co-authored), hits shelves Fall of 2014 from FLUX. My co-authored Sci-fi (we shall call it UNTITLED SHINY WIP) is coming Fall of 2015 from FLUX

You can find me here twitter, here facebook, and here Goodreads. 

What I would love to see

YA Contemporary  Think PAPER TOWNS or LIKE MANDARIN.  Give me a literary feel, beautiful prose, and characters that will stay with me for years to come. Don't tiptoe around difficult topics, dive in and tear it open. Life and emotions are messy. Own them and let me feel them as I read. Issues, edge, language, sex...not a problem.

YA Psychological Horror  There is nothing more frightening than the evil that lurks inside a chosen few. The sociopath who thinks he's sane. The delusional man who subscribes to his own truths. The tormented soul who embraces the darkness raging in his mind. No paranormal or half-dressed girl running away form a chain-saw wielding maniac for this horror fanatic. Bring me straight psychological horror with a heavy dose of "oh crap...that really could happen!"

YA Thriller  I am walking a fine line here between my taste in psychological horror and psychological thriller. Give me a fast-paced, character driven manuscript where the stakes are high and the voice is authentic, and I will fall in love every time. Give me tension and suspense and a cast of characters I neither hate nor trust.  Startle me, confuse me, let me second guess my own intuition. I want to dig for clues, get angry that I didn't see that twist coming, and curse myself for naively "believing" that seemingly honest character.

YA Historical Fiction  Think FEVER 1793 or REVOLUTION. Beautiful writing that captures the depth of the time period. Make me live, breathe, and long to have lived centuries ago when life was harder and the problems were equally as complex. 

YA Sci-fi  Keep it based in reality and set on this planet and I am game. Toss me into another galaxy with flying machines and mutating aliens and I'm lost every time.  Remember, I am a contemporary girl at heart :)

NA  Get prepared to roll your eyes because I am sure you have heard this a gazillion times.  Love it, adore it, can't get enough of it, just make sure is more plot than sex.  Language, edge, sex...none of it is a problem for me, just keep it in context.

That's me and my tastes in a nutshell.  But more importantly...

Here is what I can do for you

I love to edit. I have an unnatural attraction to line edits and have been know to track a CP down on email or messenger just to tell them what part of their manuscript I absolutely adore.

In a world where we are often told no, I think it is as important to point out what does work in a. By highlighting those scenes/ chapters/ beautifully written phrases, the writer knows what to expand on and what to give the reader more of.

I am a proud member of the BREE HIVE which means when I am not writing or attempting to corral three kids and a dog, I am reading manuscripts for Bree Ogden at D4EO Literary. I see a lot of amazing stuff, and I am continually in aw of your talent!

And lastly....yes brownies will be involved :)

I can't wait to see your manuscripts, and HAPPY WRITING! 

Secret Letter: S


  1. I can't believe it's that time of the year already! I participated last year and won myself right into a publisher's arms. Such an amazing experience. Here's hoping you get drown with delicious manuscripts you will love for years to come. =)

  2. Do mentors publicly critique the participants' work or is it kept private?

  3. As I understand it, the actual critiquing of the full manuscript is kept between the mentor and the mentee. We don't take your first chapter and post it live f that's what you are asking :) Obviously you will be pitching to agents at the end, so they will see your pitch/ query/ pages. etc...

  4. Yes, that's what I was asking. I wasn't sure if it was a queryshark type situation. Glad it's not ;)

  5. For #PitchWars NA you said more plot than sex, which is my story. But would you consider NA paranormal romance with a few horror elements? I'm talking vampires (not sparkly) that don't follow the normal mythos, witches, and a creature I'll leave for apllication day.

  6. I wish I felt I was ready to submit something for this ... but I think it'll have to wait till next year :)