Would You Read It Wednesday #234 – Armadillo’s Pillow Fight (PB) PLUS The October Pitch Pick!

Good Morning, Poppets!

I hope you all had wonderful Thanksgivings with plenty of pie! 🙂

So.

Here’s the situation:

My internet, as you know, is feeble at best (forget dial-up – think internet delivered by carrier pigeon… 🙂 )  Stone Age internet speed is pretty much the only downside to living on Bueberry Hill.  But in the computer age it’s a real humdinger!  Ever since my email server updated itself (without my knowledge or consent!), I’ve been having extremely sporadic luck being able to access my email.  I can get email by going to the local library, which has awesome internet speed, but usually not at home.

For the past two days, however, my email has been showing signs of working better! (Miracle of miracles!)  And I allowed it to lull me into a false sense of security (because it was pouring rain and chilly and I didn’t want to go to the library!)  After all, it made sense that the kinks would eventually get worked out of this fancy new email update and it would function as it was meant to!  But… when the time came to put this post together…my sluggish internet and fancy updated email once again refused to speak to each other.  As a result, I was not able to access the emails with the updated versions of the pitches for today’s pitch pick!

So, I have two options.

Option 1: hope the internet is working at 5 AM and try to update this post before most of you have gotten to it.

Option 2: postpone the pitch pick another week.

One or the other will show up below… which will it be???  I guess we’ll just have to be surprised! 🙂

Looks like I have internet this morning!!!  We’ll see how long it lasts… 🙂

#1 Michele – When Sheep Fall Asleep – PB ages 3-6

All Sam wants to do is stay up late. His parents agree to a deal: If he gets into bed and counts sheep all the way up to ten, then he can stay up all night. But the sheep aren’t cooperating, and once the monkeys, elephants, chickens, and even hyenas start crowding in, it’s all Sam can do to keep his room from turning into a zoo!

#2 Greg – Pochon’s Monster – PB ages 4-10

Staring at a pile of single socks, Viola wonders if Pochon’s Monster is to blame. A sock stealing monster made of socks. Created by the inventor of the manual dryer to take revenge on owners of electric dryers, one sock at a time.

Viola stakes out the laundry room and catches the monster red-socked in the act of stealing a sock. With a loud pop and a bright flash the monster escapes. Viola tracks down the monster and with an act of kindness gets the monster to relinquish what it has stolen.

#3 Carolyn – Muggsy And His Go-Go Cart – PB ages 4-8

Muggsy Pawsborne is born without his hind legs. However, he and his family have never seen this as a disability. It has always been his Musggsability, which means he can do anything other dogs can do, just differently. When Muggsy starts at a new school, he encounters the typical group of mean kids. When the mean kids make fun of Muggsy’s wheelchair during recess, he is left feeling embarrassed and lonely. A friendly classmate encourages Muggsy to participate in the school’s Olympic Day in order to show everyone that just because Muggsy has a wheelchair doesn’t mean he is disabled. Will Muggsy persevere and become the top pooch in school?

#4 Lisa – X Marks The Spot – PB ages 4-8

X is tired of his alphabet job. He wants to be a pirate! After getting hired to sail aboard The Porpoise, X quickly finds that he doesn’t eXactly fit in. For eXample, all the other posh pirates have squawking parrots and silver swords, but X only has his pet oX, a clumsy old aXe, and an ill-fitting tuXedo. X is utterly eXcluded from the pirate party on the poop deck. But when a band of scallywags try to steal The Porpoise’s most valuable treasure (spoiler: it’s their parrots!), X discovers his purpose with one eXpert move that saves the day!

Please choose the pitch you think is best and most deserving of a read by editor Erin Molta and vote for it in the poll below by Sunday December 4 at 5 PM EST!

Sheesh!  That was exhausting!  How about Something Chocolate?  Now, before you point out that this is pink, I realize that of course!  It’s made with white chocolate, which I know is the poor sister of the chocolate family, but it’s so pretty and seasonally appropriate that I’m sharing it anyway 🙂  (Also, I didn’t even know there was such a thing as hot chocolate made out of white chocolate, and I thought you might not either, so I felt it incumbent upon me to further our chocolate experience!) (Also, just because white chocolate is the poor sister doesn’t mean it should be shunned – it’s still chocolate – technically!)

Slow Cooker Candy Cane White Hot Chocolate!

Even though it’s not dark chocolate doesn’t it look beautiful and delicious?  I haven’t actually tried it yet… but it’s cold and rainy again and this looks so cheerful and festive that today might be the day! 🙂

YUM!  It would probably go GREAT with a brownie 🙂

Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Nadine who says, “I am an elementary librarian in an urban school district and I love my job! I am on the selection committee for the Pennsylvania Young Reader’s Choice Award (PA’s state book award) and a wiener dog owner and lover!”

Find her on the web at:
Website
Twitter
FaceBook

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Armadillo’s Pillow Fight

Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 3-8)

The Pitch:  Willow Armadillo is planning a pillow fight. She asks a friend to spread the word of this nocturnal party. As each friend gets the message, an important detail is left out. Poor Willow. Perhaps her pillow fight wasn’t meant to be.
ARMADILLO’S PILLOW FIGHT is a 446-word character driven picture book and is as much fun as a game of Telephone or Whisper Down the Alley. Children will roll with laughter at the animals’ silly missteps. ARMADILLOW’S PILLOW FIGHT is a great read-aloud encouraging audience participation.

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 Nadine 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 Would You Read It in the dropdown under For Writers in the bar above.  There are openings in January, so you have a little time to polish your pitch before putting it up for helpful feedback and have a chance to have it read by editor Erin Molta!

Nadine is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂

27 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday #234 – Armadillo’s Pillow Fight (PB) PLUS The October Pitch Pick!

  1. Norah says:

    I love white chocolate! But the candy cane hot white chocolate looks a little too sweet, even for me!
    I like the sound of Armadillo’s Pillow Fight, but wondered about the planning for one. I thought pillow fights usually erupted without planning, perhaps at a pyjama party. Nevertheless, I’m happy to have my thoughts challenged in this way. I love the premise – of the party’s details being twisted by each character who spreads the word. I had to read the pitch a couple of times to get it though. I wondered if it would be clearer if “As each friend gets the message, an important detail is left out.” became “As each friend delivers the message, an important detail is omitted.”
    I do look forward to hearing how the message gets changed each time, and wonder what Armadillo will get instead of a pillow fight. 🙂

  2. kathalsey says:

    Love the MC’s name and the premise of “telephone” as the invite gets messed up. I would personally nix the last two sentences: Children will roll with laughter at the animals’ silly missteps. ARMADILLOW’S PILLOW FIGHT is a great read-aloud encouraging audience participation.”
    Name a misstep and don’t assume what the reader will do – roll w/laughter. Perhaps name or give the phrase that makes the audience participate in the pitch. Good luck with this!

  3. ptnozell says:

    Poor you, Susanna. Internet AND email issues – vintage clothing I like, but not vintage problems!

    Nadine, I like the premise of your story but would rather learn more about why she is planning what generally is a spontaneous activity and fewer conclusions about children finding it funny and that it is a “great” read-aloud. Good luck with this – spikey armadillos & pillows are a great combination!

    • Susanna Leonard Hill says:

      The weird thing is, Patricia, that the internet actually works in its own slow dysfunctional way…most of the time… it just seems to be too slow to handle the new version of msn Outlook. Because I have no trouble getting my email if I go to the library. But that is not something one does at midnight or whilst wearing pajamas 🙂 Thanks so much for your helpful thoughts for Nadine!

  4. Lisa Riddiough says:

    Dear Nadine, I love the rhyming with Willow Armadillo and her pillow! So cute. But I agree with the others that we need a little bit more specificity about what Willow wants (friends?) and why it isn’t working out (miscommunication), then how it gets resolved. On the flip side – what child doesn’t love a pillow fight? Best wishes.

    Susanna, the pink hot chocolate looks delicious, and I bet it smells good while its cooking in the crock pot!!

  5. Judy Sobanski says:

    Nadine, I love the title for your story. It did seem a little odd to “plan” a pillow fight. However, could you say she was planning a slumber party that included a pillow fight? The first three sentences work, but then I’m curious as to what’s at stake? Friendships? The pillow fight itself? Your third sentence is enough to let the reader know it is similar to the telephone game. And I would also eliminate the “children will roll…and that it’s a great read aloud”. Sounds like a fun story that kids will love! Good Luck!

  6. Sydney O'Neill says:

    Nadine, I would love to read this story. The similarity to Telephone immediately makes me smile, and you’ve created a new angle. Like others, I’d like a brief explanation of why the pillow fight was planned.

    The last two sentences of the first paragraph sound to me as if Willow is aware of and disappointed by the misunderstandings as they occur. Is that correct? This might be a good place to mention the “silly missteps” that threaten Willow’s goal.

    Saying the story is character driven adds interest for me. You’ve done a good job of showing the story is fun, so trust your reader to know that without being told. Would it be accurate to substitute a mention of poetic language for “fun read aloud”? What is it that encourages audience participation? Repetition? Questions?

    I’m wishing you good luck with this story. It sounds like one both children and parents would enjoy rereading!

    Susanna, with all you’ve gone through on Internet connections, you’ve earned a relaxing cup of that beautiful candy-cane white chocolate. Indulge!

    • Susanna Leonard Hill says:

      Thanks so much for your very helpful comments for Nadine, Sydney! And I believe I WILL indulge 🙂 because I’m quite sure the internet problems are not solved! I will no doubt have to move into the library during the holiday contest!

  7. Gregory E Bray says:

    Glad your internet was behaving Susanna. =)

    This sounds good to me and I would read it. I agree with all of the above comments. A little more detail as to maybe what’s left out as the communication get’s passed along. Good luck!

  8. heavenlyhashformoms says:

    I’m all in on that hot chocolate! Can’t wait to get some snow here in Minnesota so we can serve some up at a sledding party! Speaking of parties, I think the ‘planned pillow fight’ in the above pitch is so unique and fun…might just start a craze across the country. “Hey come on over for a pillow fight!😀”. I love that silliness! And the idea of “telephone” and miscommunication could be so funny! I love the title as well. I would absolutely read this. The fact that it is also an “interactive” book with audience participation

  9. Keila Dawson says:

    Love hot chocolate on chilly days, oh and not so chilly days too. 🙂

    To the pitch…I can see fun illustrations of armadillos and pillows!
    I concur that pillow fights are typically spontaneous and unplanned, so maybe just say she’s planning a party. And I don’t quite see the connection to a pillow fight to the problem of friends spreading the message incorrectly. Why does she want to have a pillow fight? She’s never had one? Someone else did and their fun? Is it something she’d like to do but wonder if armadillos can do it? Just asking so you can think through why that’s important to your story.

    Not recommended you describe your story as a great-read aloud, let the editor or agent come to that decision. But I do like that your story is active and the reader engaged…how? Is there a refrain?

    Good luck!

  10. viviankirkfield says:

    Nadine…YOU ROCK! The title is awesome…the concept is delightful…and the pitch is spot on. I don’t know if you need the second paragraph…I’m thinking that would be more for the third paragraph in your cover letter…the one that details marketing and such. Best of luck with this winning story…I expect to be buying it one day in the future. 😉

    Susanna…your treat was delicious…and I voted…although EVERY SINGLE STORY DESERVES TO WIN!!! This was truly a hard pick.

    • Nadine Poper says:

      Vivian, YOU ROCK too! SWEET DREAMS, SARAH sounds like a great match for the PA Young Reader’s Choice Award of which I am on the committee. I will definitely be nominating this precious work of art.

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