Would You Read It Wednesday #374 – Rocky The Christmas Tree Surprise (PB) PLUS The April 2020 and May/September 2020 Pitch Picks

No time like the present for getting around to a task that should have been done 8 months ago! 😊

Due to COVID and the general insanity of 2020 which included various situations I will not burden you with, it appears we’ve wandered into 2021 without doing all of last year’s pitch picks and Straight From The Editors! So this week and next week we will play catch up and you will get to Vote Vote Vote to your hearts’ content!

Let’s start with the April 2020 Pitch Pick, shall we? Please read the 3 pitches in the April group, choose the one you think best and most deserving of a read and comments by editor Erin Molta and vote for it in the April 2020 Pitch Pick Poll below by Sunday January 24 at 9 PM Eastern.

1 – Sandy – Capybara Triplets (PB 4-8)

The rambunctious capybara triplets, Sebastian, Arturo, and Esteban, play and have fun all day.  But when bedtime approaches, they put on the brakes and push for a delay.  The three capybaras use slow-motion, bathroom art, and a closet hideaway to slow the bedtime process.  Although they end up under the covers, they may not stay there as they are determined to investigate what staying-up-fun they might be missing.

2 – Deborah – Sonny’s Smile (PB 3-8)

When Sonny Brightwell is invited to The Gleeful Gala to receive the “Biggest Smile on Earth Award”, he finds that the only place in town to stay is at The Prickly Inn; where smiles aren’t allowed. Being around all of the frowning guests causes Sonny’s smile to droop to the floor and now he must figure out how to get it back in time to receive his award. 

– Elaine – withdrew from consideration

3 – Sierra – The Bug Battle Circus (PB 3-8)

When household pests go head to head in the Bug Battle Circus, which crawly critters will be victorious? You guess! A wild, interactive story comparable to Bob Shea’s Crash, Splash, or Moo! and the Who Would Win? series. Nonfiction backmatter included.

Next we have the Remaining April/Single May/September 2020 Combo Pitch Pick: please read the following 4 pitches, choose the one you think best and most deserving of a read and comments by editor Erin Molta and vote for it in the April/May/September 2020 Pitch Pick Poll below by Sunday January 24 at 9 PM Eastern.

1 – Jennifer – Priya Paints Backwards (PB 4-8)

Priya thinks blank pages are scary and art class is hard; harder for her than everyone else, at least.  When you add in other opinions and constant comparisons, she’s sure she’ll never make a masterpiece.  Then one day, she turns it all around, and finally finds her way.

2 – Deborah – Jack’s Crazy Confection (PB 4-8)

Jack wants to sell his sweet confections, but the dastardly Ice Cream Man has stolen all his customers. Using his great-great-grandmother’s magic ingredient, Jack must cook up something to out-sweet those frozen treats. But a little too much magic ingredient leads to outrageous results.

3 – Lindsey – The Wind Keeper (PB 4-8)

On Jenny’s eighth birthday, Papa tells her that she comes from a long line of Wind Keepers. Together they harness the power of the wind to change the seasons and send kites flying high. But when Papa suddenly passes away, her world becomes still. Jenny must find the strength to overcome her grief and bring the wind back to the valley.

4 – Katie – Winx Thinks. . . Dinosaurs (MG Time Travel Adventure)

Winx Muller dreams of visiting the Mesozoic Era. But he’s going nowhere fast thanks to an ailing sister, busybody great aunt, and missing parents. Then Winx finds a pair of disgusting old socks that sing promises of Time Travel and suddenly the future – and past – seem wide open! Before he can  meet any Mesozoic megafauna, Winx must survive the Time-Space Continuum and the unsettling  evolution of paleontology. Stumbling through fossil-hunting hot spots, Winx gets mucked up in Colonial America, chased by men with explosives in Victorian England, captured by an ancient tracker in the desert Southwest, and half-drowned in British Colonial India. Which is nothing compared to the thunderous dangers he faces in the Mesozoic Era.

Thank you all so much for taking the time to read and vote!

Phew! After all that voting we definitely need Something Chocolate! Grab a cup of coffee, tea, or milk and let’s get dunking with these delectable Sea Salt Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies!

Sea Salt Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Mmmmmm!!!!! Scrumptious!!!!! Perfect for breakfast, second breakfast, mid-morning snack, elevenses, lunch, etc… 😊😊😊

Now then, onto today’s pitch which is a special one! A WYRI first! – a team effort! The pitch comes to us from Debbie and Sophia.

Debbie: I’ve been writing since I was twelve years old and have always loved creating stories. My other passion is volunteering with my therapy dog, Zoey, who is a Tail Waggin’ Tutor. We have been working in libraries helping children practice their reading for 9 years.

Sophia is a sixth grader in Denver, Colorado and is eleven years old. She has been writing for 3 years and can’t wait to publish her very first book! She writes in the Creative Writing column in her school newspaper, the Sun Devil Scoop. So far, she has published four stories. To read them, you can click the link below.

The two of us have been friends since Sophia was born and we both share a love of reading and writing.

https://sundevilscoop.org/?s=Sophia+Zafra

Here is their pitch:

Working Title: Rocky The Christmas Tree Surprise

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

The Pitch: A little owl takes an unexpected trip in the most famous Christmas tree in the world. After getting stranded, she discovers that she is no longer in the peaceful countryside. Alone in New York City, this brave owl finds her way home with the love and help of kind strangers.

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 Debbie and Sophia improve their 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!

Debbie and Sophia are looking forward to your thoughts on their pitch!  I am looking forward to being able to taste those delicious-looking Sea Salt Dark Chocolate Chunk cookies and getting out of quarantine someday 😊

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 😊

Would You Read It Wednesday #323 – Thaddeus, The Unicorn (PB) PLUS The April Pitch Pick!!!

Hello again, my friends!

Today is the kind of day that requires cake! 🎂

choc bday cake

That is because this little chickadee

fullsizeoutput_177

is 22 today!  Hard to believe…especially since I’m still 29 😊

We’ll be having cake (chocolate of course) right after the pitch pick, but in the meantime, Happy Birthday to the girl who is the poster child for last-could-never-ever-in-a-million-billion-years-be-least! 💕

Ready for the April Pitch Pick?

I present to you the new and improved pitches from the talented April WYRI participants!  Please read through the choices and then vote for your favorite in the poll below by Sunday May 13 at 7 PM Eastern.

#1 – Mary – April Showers (PB 4-8)

April adores taking big bubbly baths. When Mom suggests a shower, April’s imagination runs wild with fears of fiery space rocks, smoochy weddings, and pirates! Armed with determination and precise plans, April takes avoidance to a whole new level. In the end, her resourcefulness is the key to helping her wash away her fears. APRIL’S SHOWER combines the literal thinking of Amelia Bedelia with the humorous logic of The Big Bed by Bunmi Latidan.

 

#2 – Maria – Clean Kitty Super Suds (PB 4-8)

Andi T. Vipperman was born with a true knack for business and a bit lazy streak when it comes to homework. But, he mustmake it out of 1st grade before he can make it on Wall Street.

Will the stow-away in his backpack help him razzle-dazzle Ms. Stegman with his final project?  Or, does Andi create a “cat”astrophe that dooms himself to summer school or even worse?

*** Disclaimer: No animals were hurt in the making of this story!

 

#3 – Sarah – To Brighten A Birthday (PB 5-8) (formerly Lane Makes Mama Smile)

As Lane’s birthday nears, he pictures every detail of his special day: a party…caramel brownies…animal balloons.  But Mama stares out the window, with eyes as empty as their new home.  Lane hugs her, breathing in her perfume of paint and gloom.  He suggests they go for a walk in the sunshine, or watch a funny movie – Mom doesn’t want to do either.  Lane works with his dad to find a clever way to succeed, realizing that his mother is still capable of much love…and birthday celebrations!

 

#4 – Nadia – My Pet Phoenix (Graphic Novel ages 8-12)

Arka desperately longs for a pet. Her father doesn’t think she is responsible enough to have one. She makes a wish under a dark moon, but instead inherits an ailing phoenix from her uncle. He tasks her to take the dying phoenix to Sun City before the next full moon to retrieve something special. With less than 30 days and more than one Sun City on the map, Arka must journey through the eight phases of the moon to get the ailing phoenix to the right Sun City or it will die. And, if the phoenix dies, Arka will not be able to complete her journey.

 

 

And now, I think we have waited long enough for Something Chocolate! Bring out the cake!

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake (from a Healthy Dessert Blog!)

(it says healthy right on the blog!)

 

You’ll note that I’m serving health food – chocolate cake that comes from a healthy dessert blog – because I always have your best interests at heart!  So, feel free to have multiple slices, since it’s good for you and all… 😊

Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Nicole.

Nicole is a mom, social worker, member of SCBWI, and a big believer in Unicorns. You can find her on Twitter @beautify_life

 

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Thaddeus, The Unicorn

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

The Pitch: Thaddeus isn’t like other unicorns – he doesn’t have a flashy name, he can’t sing or dance, and his special power is a bit of a…well…snooze. But when an angry dragon attacks town and threatens his little sister, Thaddeus must put his best hoof forward and save the day.

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 Nicole 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 September, 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!

Nicole is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to birthday celebrations!  In the words of everyone’s friend, Max, “Let the wild rumpus start!”

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂

 

Would You Read It Wednesday #252 – Princess Ickybelle (PB) PLUS The April Pitch Pick!

Holy Anticipation, Batman!  I am on pins and needles!

Why? you may well ask.

Well, I’ll tell you!

I have just (yesterday afternoon) been informed that advance copies (one each) of WHEN YOUR LION NEEDS A BATH, WHEN YOUR ELEPHANT HAS THE SNIFFLES, and THE ROAD THAT TRUCKS BUILT are speeding toward Blueberry Hill as we speak!!!  They could get here today!!!  (OK.  Probably not.)  But maybe tomorrow!!! Or Friday!!!

Luckily I have a school visit today to keep me from setting up camp at the mailbox.  But tomorrow, if you need me, I’ll be out there in my tent just a-waitin’! 🙂

Meanwhile, let’s do the April Pitch Pick, shall we?  Our talented pitchers all revised their original pitches in response to your valuable input.  Read on to see their new and (hopefully!) improved pitches.  Decide which one you think is best and deserves a read and comments from editor Erin Molta and vote for it in the poll below!

#1 – Ana –  Working title: No More Cats
Genre: Picture Book. Ages: 3 to 6
Revised Pitch: When Lilly’s dad agrees to adopt a cat, he thinks one will suffice. But now Lilly seems to be on a mission to rescue every stray she encounters; a calico evading traffic, a kitten rummaging through trash, a tabby outrunning a dog. One by one the cat count rises while the number of potted plants and dad’s patience decreases. Together they must find new homes for their furry friends to make life sane again.

#2 – Joan –  Working Title: The New Girl or Cross-Stitch Crossbones
Genre/Age Range: MG
Revised Pitch:  Twelve-year old Jenna has been dealing with her FBI dad’s disappearance for over a year. When her mother is deployed to Afghanistan, Jenna must go to live with her grandparents in rural NC.

To help Jenna make new friends and handle the separation from her parents, grandma tries to interest Jenna in cross-stitch. At grandma’s cross-stitch group, Jenna makes her first friend of her own age—Colinda, who does cross stitch to spend time with her own grandma. Colinda is a student leader not afraid to make friends a new girl. Colinda introduces Jenna to other students but advises Jenna the best way to make new friends is to participate in activities. Jenna agrees to start a walking program to get in shape for the coming tryouts for the track team. On Jenna’s first walk, however, she discovers a skeleton! Colinda, some of Jenna’s other new friends, and the ladies of the stitchery group all prove helpful in uncrossing the jumbled bones of the mysterious skeleton.

#3 – Gabi – Working Title: A WORTHY CAPTAIN WAS SHE
Genre/Age Range: PB Fiction (ages 3 and up)
Revised Pitch:
Captain Sea Lion stuck firm to her rulebook. Rule number one: a worthy captain never turns back. Danger befalls hearties who do! But when stubborn Pelican squawks “sail back” like a broken distress call, Captain must face her own stubbornness and choose between empathy and fear.

Fans of Crankenstein and The Princess and the Pony will appreciate A WORTHY CAPTAIN WAS SHE—a quirky celebration of friendship and reconsidering rules.

#4 – Emmie –  Working Title:  JESSIE’S DREAM
Genre/Age Range: PB @5-8
Revised Pitch:  Jessie’s dream is to play baseball again with her team. Her reality is sitting out the season because of surgery requiring her to wear a halo cast.  Her friends pitch in to make her dream come true – a baseball field adapted just for Jessie!

Please vote for the one you like best in the poll below by Sunday May 14 at 5 PM Eastern!

 

Whew!  It is always such a tough choice, isn’t it?  I think all that brain-strain calls for a restorative.  And what could be more restorative than Something Chocolate?! 🙂  Grab a fork, pull up a stool, and join us at the table.  Today we’re having Oreo Chunk Cookie Pie!

Oreo Chunk Cookie Pie!

Just because it might not be the most obvious breakfast choice doesn’t mean we shouldn’t dig in.  It’s important to think outside the box.  Because after all, as writers, thinking outside the box is in our job description 🙂

Now then, onto today’s pitch which comes to us from Joanna.  A displaced Canadian and painfully slow runner, Joanna Biggs has been writing since childhood, when she kept her teachers’ in-trays busy with piles of new stories. Her head space is usually taken up with zany, colourful characters who stick around until their stories are put to paper. In between naps on her keyboard, Joanna is currently writing the next picture book in the Princess Ickybelle series. When not napping and writing, Joanna can be found traveling around Europe and Asia with her husband and children. She is currently based in rural England, where she writes and runs a popular book club.

Find her on the web at:

twitter: @joanna_biggs
facebook: www.facebook.com/joanna.biggs2
new website coming soon

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Princess Ickybelle

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

The Pitch: When messy and mucky Princess Ickybelle needs a bath, the fed-up Queen calls for help. Queen Granny arrives with some terrific tricks up her sleeve but Princess Ickybelle leads Granny on a wild goose chase around the castle, determined to foil Granny’s perfect plans. When the Princess finally succumbs to a scrubbing, she discovers that some Princesses aren’t meant to stay spotless for long.

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 Joanna 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 June, 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!

Joanna is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to SEEING MY NEW BOOKS!!!!!  (I feel like Animal on Sesame Street – all wild hair and eyes and incoherent yelling! 🙂 )

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂