Would You Read It Wednesday #338 – Furrysaurus Rex (PB)

Can you believe it?

It’s Would You Read It Wednesday again!

Where did the week go?

I’ve been thinking about it and I feel pretty certain that Would You Read It Wednesday needs a theme song!  Wouldn’t that be fun?

(Beverly Hillbillies tune)
Let me tell you all a story ’bout a perfect pitch

One for which an editor will find a niche…

Okay, so it needs a little work! 🙂

Feel free to submit theme songs in the comments! 🙂

Let’s have Something Chocolate, shall we?  It might help us write better pitches.  And theme songs!   I think this morning we’ll have fudge – the breakfast of champions!  (Well, one of the breakfasts of champions, the most well-known being Little Chocolate Donuts! 🙂 )

3 Ingredient Creamy Homemade Fudge


Recipe HERE (including helpful video!) at iheartnaptime

Mmmmm!  Isn’t that delicious?  Creamy, chocolatey fudge and ooey-gooey salted caramel on top?  With a nice cup of coffee?

I admit it.  I’m swooning 🙂

Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Greg who says, “I’m a chocolate loving, hockey playing  happily married, father of an energetic seven year old who keeps me young and inspires me to write silly stories.”

Find him on the web at:

Twitter: @GEBray19
Instagram: @gregoryebray


Here is his pitch:

Working Title: Furrysaurus Rex

Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 4-8)

The Pitch: Having seen a live furry dinosaur roaming around in his neighborhood, Edwin grabs his friend Jennifer to investigate. After several false dinosaur sightings, his amateur paleontologist title is on the line.

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 Greg improve his 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.  At this point, we’re pretty much looking at the new year (there might be one spot left in December) 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!  But there’s no time like the present to secure your date! 🙂

Greg is looking forward to your thoughts on his pitch!  I am looking forward to Warwick Children’s Book Festival this weekend!  Always a well run, super fun event!  I hope I’ll get to see some of you there!!!

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂

Oh!  And P.S.! Hopefully a special post tomorrow on something we’ve all been anticipating…! 🙂


45 thoughts on “Would You Read It Wednesday #338 – Furrysaurus Rex (PB)

  1. Nadine Poper says:

    Susanna, I was thinking more of The Brady Bunch…’here’s a story of a lonely pitch, who is waiting for it’s time to become more…’

    And I can’t wait to read your special post tomorrow!

    Greg, this sounds like a fun story concept! I love how you told me Edwin has the title of amateur paleontologist. But I think knowing that at the beginning would shape the pitch better. You use the words ‘furry’ and ‘false’ which gives the hint that perhaps it isn’t a dinosaur at all, which makes me want to read the story. Thanks for sharing and good luck.

  2. Karen Condit says:

    Yes, I would read it! I get the goal and also picture some fun hunting and guessing by the reader. One little thing: I would eliminate the word “live” from the first sentence….not needed since it is roaming about.

  3. Sarah Tobias says:

    Oh, Susanna, oh what you’ve done to Wednesdays. . . No, that won’t work either. Woot woot, I love possible Thursday surprises.

    Greg, I am curious. Your pitch jarred my brain a bit. I am wondering if the story is about Edwin and Jennifer searching for the Dinosaur or if the story is about Edwin losing his title of being a paleontologist? I feel like it’s really the first one, but the last line made me question that. (Does that make sense?)

    The other thing that I wonder about is the use of the word paleontologist. That is the study of fossils. Many happen to be dinosaur bones. Kids who are serious about their dinosaurs will know what the job is and tell you that they don’t search for live things. But . . . If Edwin is a paleontologist (I’d leave out the word amateur) then maybe he’s on to discovering the last living dinosaur.

    From all of that, I think if you add a little more detail, like: Edwin, kid paleontologist, spies a real live furry dinosaur in his neighborhood. He grabs his best friend Jennifer and they are on the hunt. They head to the place where the dino was last spotted and discover . . . (Footprints?) but no dinosaur. After a full day of searching they have a lot of clues but the furry beast remains ellusive. Edwin wonders if he should go back to studying bones that don’t move.

    OK, I made a lot of presumptions, but I hope it helps you add a little more excitement and clarity to your pitch.

    Good luck

  4. ptnozell says:

    Susanna, great suggestion to compose a WYRIW theme song. I see a new contest in your future. For me, the perfect music would be Climb Every Mountain, especially as we all know Julie is a picture book writer and who could resist hearing her voice echoing through the Hudson Valley (now, the challenge is to write the perfect lyrics).

    Greg, I love the title and concept of this picture book. Dinosaurs are such a popular topic, and paleontology is a terrific STEM tie in. I’d suggest flipping the pitch to lead with the knowledge that Edwin (love that name, btw) is an amateur paleontologist. Maybe something like this: When award-winning paleontologist Edwin spies a furry dinosaur roaming his neighborhood, he and his friend are off to investigate. But after several false sightings, Edwin must think quickly or risk losing his title.

    I hope this helps!

  5. Katie Engen says:

    Love the succinct yet friendly phrasing. Hooray for using big vocab (hoping ‘paleontologist’ is in the text). Are false sightings the only examples of trouble for Edwin? Does anything goofy/scary/confusing happen related to the sightings (or otherwise)? If so, a hint of this would be engaging. Is the paleontologist title of his own making or does it come with some social (or other) status that’s at risk? Finally, ‘furry dinosaur’ is intriguing – I’m hoping the story sprinkles in actual facts (must avoid creating unintentional misconceptions) about the likelihood of dino fur.

  6. authorlaurablog says:

    Yes, I would read it.
    I have been working on a pitch as I revise, revise, revise a MS and am here to say writing a short but complete pitch is no easy task. Congratulations Greg!
    It might help to let us know he’s an armature paleontologist at the beginning and then at the end you could say he’s worried he’ll lose his title.

  7. rosecappelli says:

    This sounds like a cute story and I would definitely want to read it. I agree with others who suggested moving the paleontologist reference to the beginning and removing the word “amateur.” I’m hoping Edwin believes he is a real paleontologist in his imagination. I’m also wondering why he might lose his title if he doesn’t find the dinosaur. But I guess I’ll have to read the book to find out!
    Good luck with this!

  8. matthewlasley says:

    Greg, you have written a concise pitch that delivers well. I would read this. The title delivers a cute concept that tells you there is already a sense of falseness (Dinos aren’t fuzzy) and shows the playfulness of this story. The pitch promises a search which could be an adventure.
    I think you can play up the drama with the friend, Jennifer. Is she also an “amateur paleontologist” or does she doubt?
    Instead of “grab” perhaps you could use word “convince” or “Prove” to show opposition from Jennifer (if there is any).

    I wish you luck and hope to see this book soon!

  9. Jennifer G Prevost says:

    I don’t have anything to add, other than the fact that we would definitely read this at our house! It sounds engaging, intelligent (cue: big words) and fun which is a recipe for a great picture book. Good luck with this one, you definitely have great suggestions already!

  10. Maria Marshall (@MariaMarshall_) says:

    Greg, this is really interesting. Sounds like a fun premise. I am wondering who is “judging” Edwin’s (love the name, btw) “status or reputation” as a paleontologist? Kids? adults/Scientists? To have this “title,” has he found some thing in the past? I am also curious if Jennifer is a partner or someone he has to convince (as mentioned above). That would dictate whether you use “grab” or another verb.

    Here’s a question for you – what makes a person a paleontologist? Schooling? Can you be self-taught? If you learn the proper proceedure, participate in digs (or do your own digs) are you a paleontologist? What makes one an amateur? Age? I ask b/c it is something I’ve been thinking about for one of my MS – especially since the definition of “scientist” does not include a degree or a need to act professionally (or for money). But “a person who is studying or has expert knowledge of one or more of the natural or physical sciences.”

    So, I like Sarah’s suggestion: [slightly tweaked]
    Edwin, kid paleontologist, spies a live, furry dinosaur in his neighborhood. Grabbing his best friend Jennifer, they begin the hunt and discover . . . (Footprints?) but no dinosaur. After a full day of searching, they have a lot of clues but the furry beast remains elusive. Edwin wonders if he should go back to studying bones that don’t move.

    Best of luck with this one. It is something I would enjoy reading. 🙂

    • Gregory E Bray says:

      Thank you, Maria. In the story, he has given himself the title of amateur. But I think I will change it to kid. It has a better ring to it. =) Like most kids, he is fascinated with dinosaurs and hopes to be a full fledged paleontologist when he grows up. There’s actually a twist to the story at the end. I haven’t figured out a way to hint at it without revealing it.

    • Gregory E Bray says:

      Thank you, Maria. In the story, he has given himself the title of amateur. But I think I will change it to kid. It has a better ring to it. =) Like most kids, he is fascinated with dinosaurs and hopes to be a full fledged paleontologist when he grows up. There’s actually a twist to the story at the end. I haven’t figured out a way to hint at it without revealing it.

  11. Cheryl Keely says:

    Yes, I would read it. Loved sleuthing and animal stories when I was a kid. Still do. As others have suggested, I’d move up the part about being an amateur sleuth. Wonder if you could hint at it being a dinosaur instead saying he actually saw one. Having glimpsed what he’s sure must be a furry dinosaur… That would help set up a is it, isn’t situation and what could be the funny things they encounter that they are sure is a dinosaur. Sounds like a fun book. Good luck.

  12. Angie says:

    Yes, I would read this book! The pitch captures my attention, but I feel like I want a little bit more of something…I’m not sure what. Sorry! But I would read this book. 🙂 Sounds like it will be lots of fun.

    Tomorrow huh? Guess we’ll have to wait! And the fudge looks decadent! Thanks!

  13. authoraileenstewart says:

    The first thing that comes to my mind is the question, “Why is the dinosaur furry?” Secondly, as mentioned above by another person, a paleontologist studies fossils, and you seem to have a living dinosaur. Perhaps the MC could be a simple dinosaur hunter whose title is on the line. I would also like a few more details packed into a few concise sentences. Is it a real dinosaur? Do they eventually find it? What kind of mishaps happen along the way?And I would just like to add that I love the name Edwin :0)

  14. Judy Sobanski (@jkspburg) says:

    Susanna, I love the idea of a them song! Perhaps the theme to Lavern & Shirley would work? (anyone remember that show or have I just totally dated myself?)
    One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight
    Scribibble! Scrabbable! Would You Read it Wednesday?
    Give us feedback now — we’ll take it
    Help us smooth and punctuate it
    We’re gonna make our pitches brand new…
    Workin’ together
    (Haha! well..you get it)

    Greg – I love the premise of your story. I agree with others that putting “amateur or kid paleontologist” earlier would help establish your character. I would love to see a hint at what the “false” sightings are… a footprint, a pile of you-know-what that might belong to a dinosaur? And why is his title at risk? Is he presenting a report or something at a science fair that it would need him to be totally accurate about this dinosaur hunt? This sounds like a book kids will love…plus a great STEM tie-in. Best of luck!

  15. Patricia Finnegan says:

    Yes! I would read Furrysaurus Rex:-) Frankly, you had me from the word dinosaur, and, when you wove a sense of adventure into your pitch, I simply wouldn’t be able to resist. I liked the brevity of your pitch, as well, and think you will be the best judge of how to tinker with the sentences until they best align with your story.

  16. Ashley Congdon (@AshleyCCongdon) says:

    I think you received a ton of feedback already. I just wanted to say you have me wanting to know more. Looking forward to your revision.

  17. Nancy Riley says:

    Very late to the Would You Read It Party, but yes, I would read it. I agree with the others about mentioning Edwin is an amateur paleontologist earlier. I also think you should make it more active words. The words, having sighted, doesn’t grab me into the action of this fun mystery adventure. Maybe something like, Edwin can’t believe it when he spots a living, breathing fossil. A furrysaurus! When he tries to show his friend, it’s disappeared and the hunt is on . . . Something like that?? Good luck, can’t wait to read your revisions!

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