I don’t know, folks!
The last two times I’ve posted, we’ve gotten slammed with snow!
Friday it resulted in several days of power outages and limping internet. Today, we’re supposed to get even more snow than last week – some say as much as 18 inches with thunder (Jem Dog hopes not! She does not like thunder, with or without snow!) – so if you don’t hear from me you’ll know the internet got wiped out again!
Or that I’ve taken myself off to somewhere warm and sunny and stopped posting for a while to protect the east coast from further storms. It’s important that I use my power for good 🙂
But you know the weather clan – they do like to get all dramatic about storms. So maybe it will be a tempest in a teapot and all we’ll get is a dusting 🙂
I guess we’ll see…
Meanwhile, what better way to greet a snowy day than with Something Chocolate? Chocolate Espresso Cheesecake is looking pretty good…!
Chocolate Espresso Cheesecake
Mmmm! Lucious! Chocolate and coffee in one! What could be more delicious?!
Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Pat who says, “I read my way through my childhood and teenage years, specializing in books on rabbits (although there are no rabbits in any book I’ve written since). I once worked on a public art project that became a Crimestoppers crime of the week. You can get more details by visiting my website (see below). My main character has been writing a blog (also see below) , which has been way fun, but it can be hard to stop talking like a pirate, ARRRR.”
Find her on the web at
Here is her pitch:
Working Title: Baba Yaga’s Arrful Day
Age/Genre: Chapter Book (ages 7-10)
The Pitch: When her magic stops working and a shipload of bad things happen, pirate-talking witch Baba Yaga has to think outside the wand if she’s going to turn this arrful day into a chest full of gold doubloons.
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 Pat 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 March, so you could get your pitch up pretty soon for helpful feedback and a chance to have it read and commented on by editor Erin Molta!
Pat is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch! I am STILL looking forward to Spring, even though the weather seems to have other plans!
Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂 Stay warm and safe!
30 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday #276 – Baba Yaga’s Arrful Day (CB)”
Maybe. The pirate/witch mash-up is odd enough to catch my attention. The pitch has so many pun phrases that it’s less inviting than it is a bit clunky. It could help to replace one (‘think outside the wand’ interrupted flow the most for me) with an actual plot or problem detail.
Arr, I be thinking on this. I does tend to pun off at the mouth. Stap me vitals, I did it again.
Yes, I would read this and I think kids would, too. Pirates and witches – a unique combination. And the word play in the pitch was fun. I think it set the stage for the type of writing the reader will find.
I be thanking you big time. I needs to play up me uniqueness as a pirate-talking witch. Gold doubloons to you.
Yes. Your character is very clear and an interesting combination for readers of that age. I loved the way your pitch was fully committed to the character using the phrase “think outside the wand,” “arrful day,” and a chest full of gold doubloons. I am wondering do witches have wands? You might also want to mention one of the things that goes wrong or why her magic isn’t working.
Aye aye matey witches does have the wands – at least this witch does. Mayhaps that be me problem. Thanks for yer suggestions – they be good ones.
I’d read this, as it seems like a fun, mad-cap story. I am a bit confused, though, as to whether Baba Yaga only talks like a pirate or is a pirate (or maybe wants to be a pirate?). I’d also like some clue of Baba Yaga’s age – is she an adult or a kid playing at being a pirate?
Hope these comments help as you get your pitch shipshape!
Ahoy, I talks like a pirate because me dad he be a pirate so I wants to honor me masculine side too. I be proud to be 477 years old – mayhaps that makes me like a kid again. Aye useful comments.
I love this. I would definitely take a look. The words “bad things happen” seem a bit dull as compared to all of the other wonderful word choices. And I also am confused if she is actually a baby or is that just her name. Great work.
I agrees with you matey. We be including some of they bad things instead. Me name it be Baba, not baby. Baba Yaga we be a long line of Eastern European witches.
This gets a yes from me but I’ll be honest, I hadn’t made up my mind completely until I read the description of the story on your web site, Pat. The mention there of Baba Yaga’s antagonists hooked me. I think you need to fit them into the pitch, probably where the generic “bad things happen” is now. I’m also a little confused because your web site description of what kind of stew Baba Yaga wants to make, it seems like she is really the antagonist/vilian of the story. But I’m willing to let that go as it is possible that it is a story of redemption/change for Baba Yaga.
That be a good idea.I be looking at the website me matey Pat put up. Aye, I starts out looking for kiddies to roast, but I ends up seeing the light. I turns vegan at the end of the book.
I think the forecasters are right this time, Susanna. We’ve had snow all morning and it’s piling up. At least there’s no significant wind this time (we still haven’t had the flashing on our house replaced that got ripped off last Friday night). No thunder yet though!
I agree with commenters above–I think the mashup is clever, but I’m not sure if Baba Yaga is a pirate or not. I picture her as a grownup, not a child. Is that correct? And maybe expand on the stakes? If her magic isn’t working–does she NEED a chestful of doubloons today? Hope this helps!
It helps. Me dad he be a pirate, but I takes after me witch mom. Mayhaps I sez that I takes after me witch mom but I talks like me pirate dad. And aye matey you be right- I be 477 years old.
I think it is a fun a clever idea. I agree with the others that I am unsure if this a pirate witch, a witch pirate, or simply a witch that talks like a pirate? The puns are clever, but without knowing more, I wonder if the pirate bit is essential to the story, or if it is a gimmick.
Since you only have one sentence, albeit a long one, I think you have space to flush out the story a bit more in your pitch. I want to hear the journey a bit more. She lost her magic so…. I think giving a little more here will clear up the witch/pirate thing.
I am definitely interested in more, so I would say a yes!
Thanks matey. The pirate thing not be a gimmick – I talks like me pirate dad. This be the thing most of you kind reviewers be confuzzled about so I be thinking on how to make it clearer.
I’ll admit it, I had to reread this three times before I realized it said “Arrful” and not “Artful” I think if you want to snag a busy agent who might be skimming through pitches it would be helpful to either change the title or make it extra clear by using something more obvious like “ARR-ful” or something that won’t loose the meaning if it is misread, like “Arrrible.” It was very confusing when my brain was seeing it as “artful!”
Aye matey I sees how you could misread it. That be anything but a artful day. I likes the suggestion of ARR-ful.
Yes I would love to read more of this! I love the pirate talk! I agree with the others who think a little more detail on who she is would help-is she a witch who likes to talk like a pirate? I interpret it as a witch who is ALSO a pirate (so much fun for kids!) Can’t wait to read the entire story!
I be liking that witch-pirate mashup thingie, which is what I be. In me blog I explores me pirate side more. I agrees we needs to make it clearer.
Arrr – I see that I’m not the only one who thought it was about Artful day (and expecting brushes and paints). “outside the wand” didn’t sound quite right…. but maybe beyond the wand (like magic can only go so far)? But I do like the whole concept of a pirate-talking witch. Would be perfect for Talk like a Pirate Day.
Thanks – I be changing the title like the reviewer above be suggesting. I be using the phrase ‘outside the wand’ like you sez ‘outside the box.’ I be hoping to rock ‘talk like a pirate day’ this year with me mateys.
I love the idea of a witch-pirate mash up. I’d definitely read your story. Although it seems some are wary of the pirate puns, I don’t think you have an overload at all. I’m curious–is this told in first person or third?
And Susanna, what would I do without my weekly dosage of chocolate recipes! This one is a must try. (Lucky you with the snow..we got a passing shower. I may live in MD but it’s been more like Seattle of late…sigh.)
Thank you for liking me puns. Me matey Pat be telling me story in 3rd person but it be all in me point of view. I be in all the scenes, but me voice it mayhaps be too much for a whole story.
I would absolutely read this! Great pitch. I’d just switch up the first part of the sentence, “When a shipload of bad things happen, and her magic stops working…” so the magic and the wand reference are a little closer together. I did also pause at the pirate-witch mashup, so if you can explain her dad was a pirate, and her mom was a witch, without it getting too wordy, go for it!
Arr matey these be great comments. I be hoping to get by with calling meself a pirate witch, but I be thinking more on it.
Yes, I would read it. It sounds actions packed and fun. I got stuck on ’pirate-talking witch Baba Yaga’. I had to read that a couple of times to grasp it. It doesn’t flow well but maybe that’s because of the line break or the fact that your sentence is very long. I like Leah’s suggestion ARR-ful. Good luck!
Thank you. I be changing the ‘pirate-talking witch’ to show that I be both a pirate and a witch. I not be thinking of that until all the smart characters out there be pointing it out. I be trying to shorten the sentence too.
If I had me any gold doubloons I be sending some to all of you helpful reviewers. I think I be revising the pitch something like ‘Pirate-witch mashup character Baba Yaga loses her magic just as three tween girls bully her, a frog threatens her, and her house demands new shoes. She has to think outside the wand to turn this arr-ful day into a shipload of gold doubloons.
You have the pirate-talking down to an arrrrt Pat. LOL! I would include one or two examples of what goes wrong for Baba Yaga, just as you have above. The frog threatens her by….? Maybe put that in there too. Good luck. Sounds so fun!!