Would You Read It Wednesday #75 – Just Call Me The Kid (PB) AND Straight From The Editor

So, I was reading an article on MSN the other day that said (and I am seriously not making this up!) that it was good to have dessert for breakfast.

They announced this like it was an important new breakthrough, but I ask you – haven’t I been saying this for years? in my own chocolate-loving way? 🙂

I believe I am smarter than the average bear 🙂  Have Something Chocolate, won’t you?  It’s for your health 🙂

And you are going to need your energy today because we have an action-packed Wednesday!

First, I am honored to say that I have received the Very Inspiring Blogger Award from the lovely and talented Tina DC Hayes!

I am so delighted to think anyone finds my blog inspiring!  Really!  It totally makes my day 🙂

Aside from displaying the award and mentioning and linking back to the blogger who gave it to me, I’m supposed to tell 7 things about myself.  You guys all know me pretty well, though, and I don’t want to bore you, so we’ll just skip that bit for now.  Then we get to the bit where I’m supposed to pass the award on to blogs I find inspiring, and for once that’s easy because it’s ALL OF YOU!  So help yourselves – you deserve it! 🙂

Now then.  Onward!

Next on our action-packed schedule, we have Straight From The Editor for the December Pitch Pick.

You will recall Kim’s pitch:

Oyster And Pearl (PB) ages 4-8

Pearl is a tiny grain of sand that lives in the bottom of the ocean. She feels insignificant in her world and both envious AND enamored of the star that she can see far above her. As she sets her sights on joining the star, she encounters many challenges... until finally, one night, she meets Oyster, who helps her become a star of her own.

And here is Erin’s helpful response:

Cute idea! I would make two small changes. One at the end . . .”who helps her become a star in her own right.” Because she doesn’t literally become a star and “of her own” sounds like she’s got a star. You want to get across that she transforms (like a butterfly) into something special a jewel of the sea – a pearl. And it seems odd that her name is Pearl but that’s what she becomes. I would give her another name or else it gives away the ending right away. Maybe something like Little or Tiny or something to emphasize the insignificance she feels.

I always find her comments so insightful!

Next (no rest for the wicked 🙂 – go back and have another slice of cake if you need further fortification :)) we have today’s pitch which comes to us from our friend Julie, whose previous pitch for Eddie Brick Visits The Aunts you may remember from December.  A scribbler of children’s stories in between chores, Julie Rowan-Zoch has visited three continents, attempted to learn 4 languages, and has a 2-3-3-3-3 phalangeal formula in both of her hands and feet. (Though not yet able to get a good grip with her toes, she has been drawing with her hands since she exchanged a banana for a crayon.)  Please come visit her on her blog and view her beautiful artwork (some of which is featured in my PB writing course :))!

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Just Call Me The Kid
Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 4-7)
The Pitch: Pip the mouse longs to be a cowboy, and does his best to rustle up some skills. His mother gets kinda ornery though, as Pip’s attempts turn the household on its head. But that doesn’t sour his milk, and neither does the neighbor’s cat!  

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 Julie 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.  There are openings in March, so we could really use some new pitches!  It’s your chance to be read by editor Erin Molta!

Julie is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to spring, which Phyllis has assured me is coming early and I plan to hold her to it.  Anytime this afternoon would be fine! 🙂

Have a great day, everyone!

86 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday #75 – Just Call Me The Kid (PB) AND Straight From The Editor

  1. Angela Brown says:

    Great advice from Erin. The slightest tweaks can really add to a pitch.

    For today's WYRI, I would read it. Shallow reason in loving the name Pip. But that's not all. I can just imagine the shenanigans Pip gets into around the house that cause his mom to get on the ornery side.

  2. delores @ thefeatherednest says:

    Sounds like a fun read. It could be just me but I think the pitch could use a little more excitement.

  3. Patricia Nozell says:

    Susanna, I've long been a dessert for breakfast kind of person myself, so I'm with you on congratulating MSN for finally catching up!

    Julie, I'd give your pitch a resounding YES, or make that a Yah, pardner. Love how you've integrated “cowboy speak” into the pitch & I am truly curious as to how a cat will affect this little cowmouse's dreams.

  4. Heather Newman says:

    Yes! This is a perfectly polished pitch, Julie 🙂

    Susanna, my son Arthur agrees with you about chocolate as a breakfast choice. He has brownies on the menu today!

  5. Stacy S. Jensen says:

    I love Pip. So yes I would read it. (I really like the pitch, so no suggestions). I'm a sucker for cowboy kid/mouse stories. I love cake for breakfast, but have to sneak it in before the toddler wakes up. 🙂

  6. Julie Rowan-Zoch says:

    An afternoon Spring arrival, what a delightful thought! But what else should we expect from this most inspiring blogger! Congratulations, so well deserved I am not surprised, not one bit!

  7. Genevieve says:

    This explains why I get up every morning thinking I should have tiramisu French toast. Again.

    I am not a big fan of cowboy stories, but YES I would read this. I love a naughty character, even if he's naughty by accident. I agree with Angela, though, and would like a hint or 2 or a detail or 2 about how Pip upsets the household.

  8. Julie Rowan-Zoch says:

    I've been wondering about a pitch hooking you in and how much detail could be too much. Thanks for the suggestion.

  9. Julie Rowan-Zoch says:

    Heather – Susanna might need to use your phrase 'perfectly polished pitch' as a regular line for Wednesdays – or will she come up with…another hair-brained scheme!

  10. Sue Heavenrich says:

    I love the idea of “rustling up some skills” – it evokes images of a lariat flying past the stove to hogtie the milk bottle. So I'm wondering: what's the first thing Pip does that starts the downward spiral into cowboydom? I can def. see this as a story! And I do want to read more.

  11. Clarike Bowman-Jahn says:

    Yes, I would read it but it does need a little something extra to spark my interest. A little more in the conflict area if possible. How does Pip upset the household for instance.

    I had chocolate cream pie for breakfast and chocolate covered almonds for dessert for lunch. Yum. so Glad to learn I am finally legal. 🙂

    Congrats on your award Susanna. You are inspiring no doubt about that. 🙂

  12. Maria says:

    I'm at a bit of a disadvantage (or advantage?) here because I think I've also read the first 250 :). So I'm a YES. I did stumble a little over the last line of this pitch. I know what you mean by “sour his milk”, but it somehow still reads literally, and then the second half of that sentence has me imagining the cat adding some sort of drops to the milk (okay, maybe I need more sleep…). Short story long, still a YES, just consider that phrase 🙂

  13. Teresa Robeson says:

    I saw tiramisu mentioned in the comments!!! Oh, sorry…getting side-tracked. 😉

    Yes, I would read this. Others have mentioned the 2 concerns I had about it: one is maybe giving a concrete example for how he turns the household on its head, and the second is about the souring milk expression (…it doesn't seem to fit the rest of the pitch somehow). But, overall, I think it's a cute idea. I also love the name Pip and I think the idea of a cowboy mouse (cow-mouse!) is adorable. 🙂

  14. Yvonne Cynthia Mes says:

    I also read your first 250 words and loved Pip's character, and his character also comes through in your pitch, excellent.

    I did stumble over ornery, it is just not a day to day word, and I even had to look it up (then again English is not my first language). And I am not sure if you need the word 'though' after ornery.

    I wonder was your use of sayings : rustle up/ household on its head/ sour milk – intentional? They work … just wanted to know if it was on purpose 😉

    A wholehearted YES from me.

  15. Patricia Tilton says:

    Love the idea of a cowboy mouse. Since I haven't read the story like others, I wonder about the second line about the mother. Would like to see how he upsets the household.

    Really loved Erin's response to Kim's pitch. Excellent advice.

  16. pennyklostermann says:

    I would read…yeehaw!!! I think the pitch is tight, but not so sure about the last line. I think the sour milk and the cat sound fun, but the wording is a bit awkward as it leaves me hanging instead of neatly wrapping up the pitch. This sounds like such fun, Julie!!!!

    Erin's comments were so clarified the pitch so well. Wow!

  17. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    Oh my yes…Julie I would definitely read this…sounds like a fun story…can't wait to find out exactly what the little mouse does to turn the house upside down.
    Susanna…Erin's comments on Kim's pitch are very helpful…she has a knack for honing in one what needs to be changed (guess that's why she does what she does :).
    BTW, the cake is delicious…as you well know, I am in total agreement with dessert for breakfast…well, for just about anything. 🙂

  18. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    Just took part in a 2 hour webinar that focused on using rich language with toddlers and young children…it grows their language and literacy skills and they love big words…we need to sprinkle them in to books and conversations.:)

  19. Stina Lindenblatt says:

    *wipes drool of keyboard* 😀

    I love the idea of Pearl being called something else so not to give the ending away.

  20. Carrie Finison says:

    Great pitch, Julie! I would totally read this.

    Just a couple of things:

    – small typo in line two ('as' should be 'at')
    – while the phrase 'turn the household on its head' is a good, descriptive idiom, I think it doesn't work here for two reasons. The first is because it doesn't feel particularly western or cowboy, while the language in the rest of the pitch does. Second, I haven't read the story, but I'm guessing that Pip is not actually trying to turn the household on its head — he's trying to do something else (e.g. have fun pretending to be a cowboy) and in the process the household is disrupted. The way you've phrased it makes his intent seem more malicious than it probably is in the story.
    – in the title, I think “The Kid” should be in quotes

    Other than that, I love it. Great job!

    Working Title: Just Call Me The Kid
    Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 4-7)
    The Pitch: Pip the mouse longs to be a cowboy, and does his best to rustle up some skills. His mother gets kinda ornery though, as Pip’s attempts turn the household on its head. But that doesn’t sour his milk, and neither does the neighbor’s cat!

  21. Hannah Holt says:

    It's a YES from me Julie. I think your pitch is pitch perfect; however, I would alter your comma placement, like so…

    “Pip, the mouse, longs to be a cowboy and does his best to rustle up some skills. His mother gets kinda ornery though as Pip’s attempts turn the household on its head. But that doesn’t sour his milk and neither does the neighbor’s cat!”

    Well done!

  22. Pamela Courtney says:

    Oh Julie it's a YES for me! Each of your sentences is cute and each on its own would be just fine. However, I wonder if there could be something that connects them all together? For example, why is mother upset? Maybe mouse's lasso-ing turns the house on its head and spills the milk. I'm not sure I'm saying what I mean in a way that makes sense. Oh I got it! A cowboy trick gone wrong that links all your cute sentences together. I think that's it. (insert grain of salt, here).

  23. Leigh Covington says:

    Great to hear Erin's comments!

    And as for the pitch… HECK YES! I'm all for cowboy stories, but this sounds darling and I think she has put such a fun spin on the pitch it makes me want to read the book! Excellent work!

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