Would You Read It Wednesday – The 16th Pitch

In case you were wondering, there are only 46 shopping days left until Christmas, counting today!

I’m not sure why the radio feels it necessary to tell us this in a panicky voice, as though we might have trouble getting our shopping done in 6 and a half weeks!  But there you have it.  Consider yourself forewarned.

Personally, I couldn’t shop for 6 and a half weeks.  Maybe after I write a New York Times bestselling book, or Punxsutawney Phyllis gets made into a movie 🙂 but at the moment, 6 and half minutes of shopping is more in line with my budget! … and my patience… 🙂

So.  That is my public service announcement for the day.  Chocolate creme donut anyone?

Now onto the fun stuff.  We have a winner in the Halloweensie Contest!!!  I do want to say again, before I tell you who the winner is, that ALL the entries were really wonderful – I was so impressed.  So if you didn’t make the list of finalists, don’t feel bad.  The competition was stiff.

Okay.  Are you ready???  Drum rollllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll!

The winner of the Halloweensie Contest, the signed copy of Haunted Party by Iza Trapani, and your admiration is #2 – Cathy!!!  Congratulations, Cathy, on a really great piece of work!  Please email me at susanna [at] susannahill [dot] com or use the handy Email Me button in the right-hand side bar to contact me with your address so I can mail your prize!

And never fear!  We will be having another contest in a couple weeks which I will be announcing on Friday!!!

Now.  Buckle up your reading glasses because it’s time for everybody’s favorite show:  Would You Read It!

Today’s contestant is Dee from Down Under who blogs at DeeScribeWriting and is currently participating in NaNoWriMo.  She presents us with the following:

Title:  Hating Ric
Age/Genre:  YA Verse
The Pitch:  On the day of his brother, Jason’s funeral, 17 year-old Ric’s anger explodes, and he races Jason’s car through the streets, crashing and badly injuring jogger, Kate.  Ric is sent to a juvenile justice centre, where survivor guilt and grief set him on a reckless destruction course. Help comes through his music and from an unexpected source in Kate who is struggling to put her own life back together.

So what do you think?  Would You Read It?  YES, MAYBE or NO?

If your answer is YES, please feel free to tell us what you particularly liked and why the pitch piqued your interest.  If your answer is MAYBE or NO, please feel free to tell us what you think could be better in the spirit of helping Dee improve her pitch.  Helpful examples of possible alternate wordings are welcome.  (However, I must ask that comments be constructive and respectful.  I reserve the right not to publish comments that are mean because that is not what this is about.)
Please send YOUR pitches for the coming weeks!  For rules and where to submit, click on this link Would You Read It or on the Would You Read It tab in the bar above.
Dee is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  And I am wondering about your holiday shopping habits… 🙂
And a quick reminder that Friday’s Fun Foto theme is HIBERNATION if you want to post a kid-friendly, story-inspiring, hibernation-related photo on your blog Friday 🙂  Friday will also be the next installment of Straight From The Editor!, so stay tuned.  Friday may or may not include a Warm Fuzzies entry (depending on whether or not I can pull something together :)) but it will include the next contest announcement.  So see ya Friday!!!

45 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday – The 16th Pitch

  1. Abby Fowers says:

    Interesting. This is definitely good for YA. I think that anyone could learn from a book like this, but it would be especially helpful for those who have put themselves on a destructive course. I hope it has some truth to it. I think this is something I would like to read. It's different than what I normally jump at, but it sounds very interesting and I am impressed with the choice of story.

  2. Joanna says:

    Yes. Firstly it is in verse and I am a bit of a sucker for this. Secondly I want to know about the relationship between Ric and Kate. Sounds authentic.

  3. catherinemjohnson says:

    Congrats to Cathy, that was my favourite too.

    I would definitely read that story and I love novels in verse. It sounds quite realistic, I would mix up that last line, to hint more about Kate's relationship with Ric. Do you like this:
    Music is his only comfort in his dark world until his crash victim, Kate shows up.

  4. Coleen Patrick says:

    My first thought is a YES, the blurb sounds great, but then I noticed that it was in verse. I don't usually go for that in YA, but that's just me because Ellen Hopkins YA novels in verse are very popular!!

  5. Bren MacDibble says:

    Yes, I would definitely read Ric and Kate's story. Teenagers often get themselves into destructive patterns and I think they'd love to read this too. Especially since Ric has very real reasons for his feelings. I'd like to find out more.
    It's a good punchy pitch. But I sped over the first mention of Kate. Is there room to call her a “young” jogger or “teenaged” jogger? Just a little more. And I'm wondering at the end if each of them know who the other is at the outset of the relationship. If it is to be a one-sided or accidental meeting then that might be worth mentioning for even more interest.

  6. Sheryl Gwyther says:

    Yes, this pitch would make me want to read this story too.
    I approve of Catherine's suggestion about highlighting the relationship between Kate and Ric in a positive way – with all the sadness before it, it gives a feeling of hope at the end. 🙂

  7. Patricia Tilton says:

    Yes, I would read it. The book begins with a bang and the tension only grows. I think this would be excellent for teens to read. There are so many emotions that jump out at me. And, I see redemption. Very nice pitch!

  8. The Golden Eagle says:

    Maybe. I really like the pitch; I want to know more about Ric, and why Kate is struggling as well. The only thing that might lead me to not pick up the book is the fact it's in verse–I enjoy books in that form, but I have to be in a certain kind of mood to read them.

  9. Shelley Souza says:

    I would read this book because it's written in verse. Not that I particularly like stories that are written in verse but because I think this story could provide for something unexpected to happen to and for the reader that might not otherwise occur if it were written in prose. I like the way Dee has written the last line of the pitch, it's less obvious but more poetic.

    (The one thing I would change is syntax in the opening line to “his brother's funeral” and lose the brother's name because it's irrelevant for this pitch. It causes a hiccup in the flow of the overall pitch, as written. If Dee really wants the brother's name in the pitch, then it should be written as: his brother Jason's funeral; or, his brother's, Jason's, funeral; or Jason's, his brother's funeral.)

  10. Kaz Delaney says:

    Congratulations Dee – this is a great proposed work. And I agree with Catherine, I think the whole concept is an intriguing mix: The fact that it's in verse, the dark theme with the hint of rising hope. Brilliant.

    But, imho, to make it more intriguing, in terms of making me want to rush out and buy it, I'd spice up that last line, as Catherine suggested.

    I know, I know, it's the journey, not the destination, but when I got the last line, it felt a bit like a 'done-deal'. I'd rather go into the story wondering how that's going to pan out than actually 'know'. Maybe an editor will feel the same and request?

    But that's just me. And I'm jealous. LOL. Fabbo concept, Dee.

  11. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Bren, Sheryl, Shelley and Kaz – welcome and thanks so much for stopping by and commenting! It's nice to “meet” you all. Dee is lucky to have such supportive and helpful friends!

    Joanna, Catherine, Coleen, Patricia, and Golden Eagle – thank you for your comments and for always being so helpful to our Would You Read It pitchers! 🙂

  12. Dee White says:

    Thanks, Bren, Sheryl and Patricia for your insightful comments.

    I can see there are a couple of things I need to work on to get across more clearly, what's going on in my head.

    Dee

  13. Dee White says:

    Thanks, Julie,

    I can see what you mean. There's internal information about Ric but the pitch doesn't show much of Kate's emotional journey. The book is from both POV so I need to think some more about that one.

    Dee

  14. Dee White says:

    Susanna, that would be great if you went into publishing:)

    I've been getting nice rejections from agents for this novel, saying they love the writing but they don't think they are best person to rep a verse novel.

    Don't suppose you know any agents or publishers who do rep/publish verse novels.

    Any advice gratefully received:)

    Thanks.

    And thanks again for having me on your blog.

    Dee

  15. christinemareebell says:

    YES, I would definitely read this book. Exciting premise; I'd just like to see a hint in last line too about the relationship between Ric and Kate. Also, one other thing struck me; if the survivor guilt is over his brother's death, I'm thinking that might want to be mentioned more where Ric explodes, rather than when he goes to juv detention.
    Good luck, Dee.

    Chris

  16. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Chris – welcome and thanks so much for visiting! I hope you'll come back for other Would You Read Its, and feel free to submit a pitch yourself if you'd like 🙂

    Dee – unfortunately I don't know anyone who specializes in verse, but I can ask around a little…

  17. Stacy S. Jensen says:

    Congratulations Cathy. I loved the rhyme in your story.
    Yes. I would read the story. I stumbled over the brother's name too. I'm not familiar with any of these stories in verse. I may need to checkout the example mentioned in the comments. Is Kate a teenager love interest or an adult/mother/sister figure?

  18. Dee White says:

    Thanks, Chris,

    I'll definitely be working on making the relationship between Ric and Kate clearer and also clarify about he survivor guilt. I appreciate your feedback.

    Dee

  19. Dee White says:

    Thanks, Susanna,

    Thanks for offering to ask around for me.

    I have been checking out other YA verse novels and their publishers and agents. Even though Ellen Hopkins' novels are bestsellers there does seem to be reluctance particularly in the current economic climate to publish in verse. But I have tried rewriting this book in prose and it didn't work. I will persevere with my submissions and keep hoping:)

    Thanks to all the helpful feedback I have received on your blog I will be able to fine tune my query letter and I'm sure that will help.

    Dee

    Dee

  20. Empty Nest Insider says:

    Congratulations to Cathy! Would You Read It is an excellent idea! Not only does it give writers a platform, but it enables other writers a chance to provide helpful feedback. Because I am new to this, I'll wait to chime in later. Best of luck to Dee. Julie

  21. janebuttery says:

    I think Young teens would be attracted to verse. when my daughter had school problems she often wrote poetry to get it out of her system. She still does this at times. There are all kinds of ways to present novels now and so why not verse? I also think that a musician would THINK that way. Does he write songs? Rhythm is so important in music so the use of verse fits your theme.
    Good luck.
    Get it out in 'sneek' previews and that might garner interest.

  22. janebuttery says:

    Just thought of this pitch Susan and Dee. I had fun making poetry!

    Ric’s anger about his brother’s early death
    Made him race recklessly and injure more
    Teen Kate whose own struggles left her bereft,
    Till she saw a way to help beleaguered Ric.
    Guilt ridden, remorseful into ruin pitched.
    What would he contrive with no hope left?
    Would Kate’s love rescue Ric, grief-bewitched?

    Just a taste of verse!

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