Would You Read It Wednesday #296 – Enough (PB) PLUS The January/February Pitch Pick!

Holy Lightning Bugs, Batman!

Where did summer go?

I blinked and somehow Labor Day weekend has come and gone and school buses are rumbling along the roads today!

I’m sad to see the days shortening, but I am so happy to be back with all of you!  I hope you all had wonderful summers and are renewed and refreshed and ready to launch into a flurry of writing!

As I’m sure you’ve all noticed, I have struggled a bit this year to keep up with everything.  My parents aren’t as young as they once were and have faced a number of challenges since the end of January.  I am fortunate to be in a position to help and care for them, but that added onto life-in-general leaves me with less time for other things.  As a result, I’m just now getting around to all the Pitch Picks for this year.  Sorry about that!

I don’t want to swamp you with all of them at once, so I’m going to add one a week into the next few Would Your Read It Wednesdays until we catch up, starting today with…

The January/February Pitch Pick (at long last!!!)

Our brave pitchers took all your helpful comments to heart and I present you now with their revised pitches.

#1 – Erik – Stoyanovich in Paris (MG historical fantasy)

Nikolai Stoyanovich Krisayev is the last of a long line of Russian rat nobility, living in exile in 1880’s Paris. When he rescues a visiting mouse princess from armed kidnappers, he is thrust into the midst of a silent war being waged secretly in the streets and sewers of the city.
With only his wits, his father’s sword, and the aid of a shadowy figure who may or may not be on their side, he will have to fight to save both the princess and the city he loves.

#2 – Kari – Kids Can’t Fetch (formerly: Training Your Human) (PB ages 4-8)

Kids don’t come with an owner’s manual, and Freckles the dog is having a RUFF time keeping his kid Zach out of the doghouse. After an ice cream truck chasing fiasco, Zach gets Freckles laughed right out of the dog park. If Freckles and his kid Zach can’t foster a friendship, life may turn into an epic dogpile.


#3 – Francis (Tim) – Murphy The Reluctant Potato (PB ages 4-8)

Murphy isn’t like all those other potatoes. He doesn’t dream of becoming a delicious side dish on the dinner table; of making beautiful art that gets displayed on the fridge; or of winning ribbons as a science fair project. Murphy is very happy kicking back in Farmer McCubbin’s cozy little garden. He has no plans for going on any “potato adventures” thank you very much. But when a shovel turns his world upside down, getting back to the garden turns into an adventure Murphy never imagined.

#4 – Jennifer – Taste of Summer  (PB ages 4-7)

It doesn’t matter if it’s sliced, diced, smashed into juice or dressed up like dessert, Wendy turns her nose up at any kind of fruit. But, on a class trip to a famous watermelon farm, all eyes are on her as she’s offered a deal that might be too sweet to resist.


#5 – Ann – The Lovesong of Jubal Jacques (chapter book ages 8-adult)

The ten-year-old narrator has been sent to stay with her grandmother on a small, green island, to convalesce after a long illness.

Her Uncle Jubal is in love with the honey-haired lady who lives on the hill. He writes her a beautiful lovesong and sings it to her, but the lady just sits on her verandah and weaves and weaves, never as much as turning her head. How can she be so cruel?

It is the child who finally guesses the secret that will enable Uncle Jubal’s lovesong to reach the honey-haired lady’s heart.


Now that you’ve had a chance to read through the revised pitches, please choose the one you like best and feel is most deserving of a read and comments from editor Erin Molta and vote for it in the poll below by Sunday September 9 at 9PM Eastern.  Thank you for taking the time to read and vote!


Phew!  All that voting made me a little faint from hunger.  Let’s have Something Chocolate, shall we?  Since it’s been so warm, I think some Oreo Ice Cream Cake would be just the thing!

Oreo Ice Cream Cake


Recipe HERE at Foodtasia

Doesn’t that look like the perfect second breakfast?!  Plus, for those of you who like to double your chocolate, you can make it with chocolate ice cream instead of vanilla!  Or if you like coffee, you could use coffee ice cream!  The possibilities!!!

Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Katie, whom you will remember from her pitches in June and July for The Tooth Fairy Conference and The Boys Who Brushed Teeth Too Much (and almost destroyed the world) Katie says, “I’m an educator, Word Nerd, and Ice Cream-Loving Optimist. Faith, family, and fitness are my motivators. My #1 writing goal is picture books featuring Big Ideas for Young Minds (also the name of my main blog). My side gig is creating teaching resources (my own and for hire).”

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Enough

Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 4-9)

The Pitch: Elpis is an uncommon thing. With feathers sparkling, she spreads hope in brilliant cascades. Until… Moros throws deep, deep shade. Families, cities, and even nations suffer as Elpis sputters, shrinks, then sinks. Moros gloats…until he’s challenged by a few spirited youngsters. Is it enough? Does Moros prevail, or will Elpis rise to sparkle once again?

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 Katie 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 October, 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!

Katie is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to all the fun things we’re going to do this year – Perfect Picture Books (which starts Friday), Tuesday Debuts (next one on September 18), Would You Read It, contests, and who knows what other high jinx and shenanigans!  Plus, there’s always plenty of chocolate around here! 🙂

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂


10 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday #296 – Enough (PB) PLUS The January/February Pitch Pick!

  1. ptnozell says:

    Susanna, good to have you back! I’ve been dealing with elder issues these past few years, too. This stage of life is never easy.

    Katie, I’d give this a maybe. I’d like to know what the characters are (gods, perhaps?), the setting, why “youngsters” must save the day, & a hint at how they do so. I’m confident that once you provide a few more details, you’ll be changing my maybe to a yes!

  2. David McMullin says:

    It’s always nice to wake up to see there is a new post from you, Susanna. The vote today was difficult – they were all terrific.

    Katie, I’m giving this one a maybe also. Simply because I had to read through it a few time to figure out what was happening. It is clear that there is a nice story here, I love your word choices, and the story feels unique. All great things. But I think it could benefit from simplifying. And the sudden appearance of unknown youngsters made me feel like I was missing something about who the story is really about. Good work.

  3. fspoesy says:

    We’re happy to have you back, Susanna! I always look forward to WYRIW!

    I’m also a maybe, Katie. There isn’t enough information for me to picture what is going on and I’m not sure what either Elpis’s or Moros’ motivations are and where the youngsters fit in. This seems like it might be an epic mythological tale, but I just can’t quite work out exactly what the story is. I think with a little more detail this could capture an agent’s or editor’s attention real quick. Also, if you keep the words “Until…Moros throws” I would recommend losing the ellipsis as it seems like a speed bump in the flow of the pitch. I look forward to reading a revised pitch!

  4. Gregory E Bray says:

    Great pitch revisions everyone. =)

    I’m a maybe also. Like everyone else so far, I want to know what the characters are, As is, it sounds like a novel to me. But I do want to see how it fits as a picture book. Good luck!

  5. matthewlasley says:

    Good morning Katie.

    I have to say that you have a good opening sentence. I might combine it with the second sentence to with “because” or else you might have the reader thinking it is a disease.
    I see this as being an epic struggle between two ??? Like some of the other comments, I am not sure what they are.
    It sounds like it is coming off as a legend and if that is so, the culture should be portrayed in the pitch.
    I too wonder what the children do, but I do not know what is at stake.
    Finally, it is in my opinion that there are very few times that you should ask a question in a pitch. I have talked with agents and editors who both have mentioned that they like to be compelled to ask their own questions rather than being asked for them.

    I think that you have an interesting concept here that is workable, so for me it is a maybe as well,

    Good luck!


  6. Judy Sobanski (@jkspburg) says:

    Susanna – Nice to have “Would You Read it Wednesdays” back! That ice cream cake looks pretty good…it’s 98 degrees in Ohio today!
    Katie – Your pitch is intriguing. There is definitely a conflict going on! However, like some other commenters; I’d like to know what types of “things” Elpis and Moros are? (Mythical creature, some type of monster?) You do a great job of defining the “good” character and how she spreads “hope.” Can you give a little more information about Moros other than that he “throws shade” and gloats? I’d like to know how the youngsters play into this rivalry? I feel like a little more detail about the plot would be better than the two questions at the end. Good luck!

  7. Kari Gonzalez says:

    Susanna- that looks delicious!
    Hi Katie- You have gotten some great feedback above. I really like the intrigue you have presented. If you can build out what the main characters are and give a little more detail on the direction the story is going and how it gets resolved, I will change my Maybe to a Yes! I would also recommend the main character resolve their own conflict. I started to second guess if Elpis was the MC, or the youngsters you mentioned were the MC’s. If it is the youngsters, you may consider bringing their entrance into the pitch in the first sentence to introduce them as the MC. Good luck with your pitch!

  8. pamelacourtney says:

    Susanna I don’t know how you know to pick just the right chocolatey breakfast. YUMMO! Katie your story if filled with great imagery, rhythm, and mystery. Easy to get carried away with your beautiful language until you realize you’re not sure what is happening to or with the characters. Defining them a bit without dismantling the intrigue is your task. I look forward to seeing this pitch again. More so the story.

  9. Jay Reece says:

    Hi Katie – I love your goal of ‘Big Ideas for Young Minds.’ It took a few reads to understand that the story is likely to be about god-type figures fighting it out (such as hope over adversity?). I’m on the YES side as I like the mythical theme and possibilities that the pitch conveys, but, like others have said, it would be better with a little more detail on story direction, especially the plot and MC’s role. Also, I wouldn’t include direct questions in the pitch. I look forward to seeing your revised pitch! Good luck

  10. heavenlyhashformoms says:

    Yes! It sounds fascinating! Defining “thing” to “mythological creature “ would help us imagine this “thing” a bit more. And a sentence saying, “the kids must….(by a certain time) or (state consequence)” might also build suspense. The term “youngster” might be changed to a more specific age group. I think you will have a beautiful tale! Best of luck!!!

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