Would You Read It Wednesday #270 – Cock-A-Doodle WHAT? (PB)

Good Morning, Dearies!

I’m just going to come right out and confess that I am not even here right now!

Whilst you are reading this post (which I scheduled ahead), I am in BRAZIL!  I know!  Nuts, right? 🙂  But I am!

And I’ll tell you right now, I didn’t even pack my computer!  I am taking a whole week off to visit my son and not doing any work at all!  So you may rightly accuse me of dropping the ball 🙂  Hopefully I’ll figure out how to pick it up when I return, since the Holiday Contest opens approximately the next day!  Have you noticed how there just never seems to be enough time for everything?

Anyhow, even though I am in Brazil where I’m not sure if they even have chocolate (I’ll let you know when I get back) I would not want to deprive YOU!  So how about a little Something Chocolate to get you revved up for helping today’s intrepid pitcher.  (Please help yourself to seconds if you need extra fuel to motivate your Holiday Contest entry writing! 🙂 )

Easy Chocolate Cake

Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Candace.  Candace follows her heart and writes poetry and short stories. Her poetry blog is http://rhymeswithbug.com

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Cock-A-Doodle WHAT?

Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 2-4)

The Pitch: Clarence the Rooster was nervous. Tomorrow morning was his big opportunity to wake up Farmer Judy. But what if she sleeps right through his crowing? Clarence decides to ask his friends on the farm for advice. He asks the cat, the sheep, the ducks, the cow, and even the hairy dog, for ideas. Should he follow his friend’s suggestions, or should he follow his heart?

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 Candace 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 time to polish your pitch before putting it up for helpful feedback and a chance to have it read and commented on by editor Erin Molta!

Candace is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to the upcoming Holiday Contest!  Have you written your entry yet (hint-hint, nudge-nudge! 🙂 )?!

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂

 

14 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday #270 – Cock-A-Doodle WHAT? (PB)

  1. Ann Martin says:

    Yes I would read this. With the right illustrations, It has all the hallmarks of a popular book for this age group: farm animals, an easy-to understand problem to be solved, repetition (littlies love this!) and presumably a happy resolution!

    Go Candace!

  2. nancyriley7 says:

    Yes, I would read it. As Ann said above, with the right illustrations is could be very fun to read with the 2-4 target audience.

    One thought, the pitch starts in past tense, “Clarence was nervous. Tomorrow morning was his big opportunity.” I suggest – “Clarence the Rooster is nervous. Tomorrow morning is his big …. Will his crowing wake up Farmer Judy? What if it doesn’t?” Something like that.

    What fun Candace! Good luck and I hope Clarence’s crow rings loud and clear!

  3. authorlaurablog says:

    Great idea for a story, this is a yes for me. I found the wording of past tense in the beginning awkward and think Nancy’s suggestion is perfect. Love the farm animals but my favorite part of the pitch is “follow your heart!” Good luck.

  4. matthewlasley says:

    I am on the fence with this one. I get a peek into what could be a fun story and the title is clever, but I want to know more about what happens. Okay, I know that is the point of a pitch, but this want to know more is not about the story, but the plot.

    First things first. Verb tense. in the beginning you say “tomorrow” but use the verb past tense “was.” This is done a few times in the first few sentences. When you ask a question, you can get away with it because you are expressing a thought you already had. An editor or agent want to see your writing credentials in your pitch, and I have watched many seminars and webinars where they say they never got past the opening sentence because of grammar mistakes and mixed up verb tenses.

    Words are golden. Every word needs its purpose. You mention that Clarence asks his farm friends, then went on to list all of the farm animal. Is it necessary? They are all animals that you expect to find of a farm.
    This space could be used to flush out the plot. What happens without giving away the whole story. What kind of advice does he get? Why would the other animals care?

    And finally. I will preface that this is a personal opinion and you may hear differently elsewhere, but I am not sure ending a pitch with a question is the proper way to do so. You want the agent or editor to ask their own questions, a want to know more. If you do want to end with a question, make it about the plot and not so much about the character, i.e. “What could go wrong?” When you end with a character question, it feel like you are trying to push a lesson.

    Anyways, I enjoyed your pitch and I am curious about the story. I can see a lot of fun lines and moments here. Good Luck. Matthew

  5. Maria Marshall (@MariaMarshall_) says:

    Candace, I would have to say maybe. There are a large number of Rooster books on the market (see: https://www.google.com/search?q=rooster+picture+books&rlz=1C1CHBF_enUS755US755&tbm=isch&source=iu&ictx=1&fir=OPK1bbZyTpF0fM%253A%252CEarLyrZvr9bC2M%252C_&usg=__yRowwFmUaZCfaCROiSr4XWQ8ANU%3D&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiuwuWWy-TXAhVV1mMKHb2eCzYQ9QEITzAA#imgrc=_)
    This pitch sounds familiar. How is your PB different from the others?

    Why is this Clarence’s big chance? is he new? A youngster getting his first chance? That might be an important fact to get into the opening sentence, a reason that THIS book is different.

    Instead of telling us: “Clarence decides to ask his friends on the farm for advice. He asks the cat, the sheep, the ducks, the cow, and even the hairy dog, for ideas.” Can you use examples? Is this a humorous book? or serious? Use this chance to offer a peek at your voice in how you describe the friend’s suggestions, & snag the attention of your reader. Maybe try something like –
    “Surrounded by conflicting advice to _(crow deeply in his ear)_, ____, or ___, Clarence must decide whether to follow his friend’s suggestions, or his heart.”

    I would not end with a question, so many agents and editors do not like queries that end with questions. I do like Clarence’s dilemma and I think it is tantalizing.Good luck with this.:-)

  6. heavenlyhashformoms says:

    Yes, I would read it…I love it! I can’t even imagine what sort of advice those animals would give the rooster. I would be curious to know what you have done with this idea! Good luck, Candace! Will you follow your friends’ advice, or lead with your heart?

  7. Jilanne Hoffmann says:

    First, I would echo Maria’s comment, wondering what makes your book different from all of the others. I just attended a webinar about picture book pitches in the 12×12 group. The speakers, Julie Hedlund and Emma Walton Hamilton, warned against using rhetorical questions in your pitch. So there’s that. I also am wondering what about this day is different from all the others. Why will this be the FIRST day that the rooster is going to wake up the farmer? Hope these comments help. Good luck with this!

  8. Corine Timmer says:

    You have my interest. I am drawn to the conflict between other people´s voices and one’s own inner voice. However, I think that children in your target age may not think about it consciously. I like the idea of the rooster asking his friends for advice. I am curious to find out what they tell him, how he reacts, and what he decides to do. I do wonder why he needs to wake up the farmer. Is it a special day? And why would she sleep through his crowing? Does Clarence have a problem with his voice? Is the farmer a very deep sleeper? Lastly, I am not sure if the book is serious, fun, or enchanting. Good luck!

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