3 S.R. Johannes: Mary Kole's Agent Pitch Contest!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Mary Kole's Agent Pitch Contest!

UPDATED:Contest Deets

Mary Kole, Agent at Andrea Brown Literary
At this time, Mary is only considering young adult and middle grade novels and truly exceptional, funny, quirky and character-driven picture books (she especially loves working with author illustrators). She's seeking fresh, unique voices and idiosyncratic characters who, by book's end, are more friend than fiction. Her favorite stories are upmarket, high-concept, character-driven and well-plotted...featuring a mix of fast pacing, emotional resonance, and beautiful writing. In essence: literary spark with commercial appeal.

While she's not interested in high fantasy (think Tolkien), she would love to consider realistic/contemporary, character-driven fantasy (think GRACELING), urban fantasy, action/adventure, light science fiction, absolutely unique paranormal (no vampires or werewolves or Greek mythology), and humor manuscripts. She is especially looking for horror, ghost, mystery, thriller and dystopian tales. One of her favorite genres is magical realism: a story set firmly in our world, only with a twist—something that turns "reality" on its ear—to make things more interesting. Favorite themes include: family, home, unlikely heroes, discovering one's voice, and finding one's equilibrium after a big life event. Mary adores manuscripts that make her laugh, make her tear up or punch her in the gut. She also loves stories of friendship, romance, betrayal, full of those "first time" moments that make teenage life electric and unforgettable.

Gets a query critique from Mary!

When: Today, Friday August 20th. Begins at Noon EST, ends Sunday 22nd at noon EST (I will close comments when it ends and go by the time stamp on blogger.)

What: Leave your 140 character book pitch (for MG, YA, and select PBs - see above list) in the comments.

  • If your manuscript is still in WIP - you can enter since this is a query critique.
  • Your pitch must only be 140 characters (not words!) so be creative. If it is longer when I test it in twitter, it will be disqualified. so be sure! You can check this either on Word, on Twitter if you have an account, or here.
  • This is for unagented/unpublished book writers only. (if you've published articles or essays - you can enter!)
  • You can only enter once so choose wisely!
  • You must be a follower of my blog. If I were you I would follow Mary's's blog and Twitter too just b/c they are awesome and she does a lot of contests there.
In the comments you must leave the following information to be considered: title, genre, your 140 character pitch, and your email.

Example: YA Survival Suspense - Grace Under Fire When her forest-ranger father disappears,Grace uses her survival skills to search the NC mtns & finds a secret group plotting against nature
Here are a few reference articles on writing one sentence pitches:

Nathan Bransford (agent)
Rachel Gardner (agent)
Query Tracker
Scribe Chat
140 character pitch

Good luck!


Stephanie McGee said...

Good luck to everyone who enters! (I don't write YA so I'm out.)

Shelley Watters said...

Sorry - I hit send before I realized that it hasn't opened yet!

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Email: shelleykuklish@gmail.com

When Anna travels to Egypt to work with her father on an archeological dig, she must discover her past in order to have a future with Alex.

Anne M Leone said...

Title: A Truth I Don't Know
Genre: YA Paranormal/UF
Email: annemlanderson AT gmail DOT com

When 16-year-old Mali sees a vision of her brother’s murder, she will sacrifice everything to save him, including her new found romance.

Unknown said...
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Michelle Sussman said...

Thanks for the opportunity! :-)

Title: The Sleepers
Genre: YA fantasy (more like Graceling, nothing like Tolkein)
Email: michelle (at) michellesussman (dot) com

Will Lianne, adoptee, elite fighter and queen’s maid who’s filled with rage and uncontrollable magic, protect or destroy the kingdom?

Unknown said...

Sorry for my first comment, clearly reading instructions immediately after waking up is not a good idea.

Title: The Sandman's Apprentice
Genre: MG paranormal
Email: a-j(at)cox(dot)net

To save her kidnapped brother, Taryn must become the first female Sandman; venture into new realms; and, oh yea, save the world from monsters.

Sarah N Fisk said...

Title: Miranda's Fire
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy (60K)
Email: sarah.n.fisk(at)gmail(dot)com

When supposedly-extinct demons kidnap her mother, 16yo Fire Mage Miranda sets off on a cross-country rescue mission with a young Paladin

Jess said...

YA magical realism/time travel

The first time, Madelyn drowns accidentally. The second time, her twin sister Camilla lets it happen, a choice that could pull her under.

Jessica @ jessicatudor . com

Unknown said...

Title: Blackbird
Genre: YA Spy/Urban Fantasy
Email: kyle@skyledavis.com

Magical Spy Taylor faces hit squads, impenetrable security, and a hot but vengeful elf boy to stop sorcerers unbalancing the magical world.

Meradeth Houston said...

Title: Colors Like Memories
Genre: YA UF
email: mrs.which (@) gmail.com

Julia’s secret: she killed the guy she loved. It was an accident—sorta. Now she must save her best friend, but her ghosts won’t make it easy

duwarr said...

Title: Unlives of the Undead
Genre: YA Paranormal
Email: dustin.warren at nc.rr.com

High school is never easy, but George, a dim-witted zombie, must deal with more than homework and bullies – he’s been accused of murder.

kidsbookjunky said...

Name: Charlie Eve
Genre: MG Adventure/Humor/Fantasy
Email: kidsbookjunky@gmail.com

Mason's cast of misfit characters came to life and Princess was kidnapped. Hero and Villain must rescue her, but this is no fairytale.

Larissa said...

Name: Larissa Hardesty
Title: LURE
Genre: YA Paranormal
Email: lchardesty at yahoo dot com

People in 15-year-old Mitch's town are reading themselves to death. He must figure out how to stop the obsession, or lose everyone he loves.

Jared Larson said...

Title: I'm Here to Save Your Day: The Adventures of Bo Wolf
Genre: MG Adventure/Fantasy
Email: iwillwhisperno(at)gmail(dot)com

A brazen boy faces a playground bully to reclaim the jungle gym, only to discover the bully's mom– the lunch lady— is a far worse enemy.

Nazarea Andrews said...

Name: Nazarea Andrews
Title: FireFall
Genre: YA paranormal.
Email: nazareanandrews@gmail.com

Falling in love isn't easy, but when 17-year-old Alianna Clayton falls for a shapeshifting phoenix, everything in her life heats up.

tiftruitt said...

Name: Tiffany Bennett
Genre: Dystopian YA

After the great war everything changed. No hope. No freedom. No purpose. Naturals and chosen ones. And a girl caught between two worlds.

Melissa Gill said...

Name: Melissa Gill
Genre: MG/Adventure

Watership Down meets Zombieland when a zombie rabbit leads a quest, inspired by The Odyssey, to liberate an animal testing lab.

Artemis Grey said...

Title: Amarok and the Gone Missing Girl
Genre: YA Fiction
Email: Greyvaledesigns@gmail.com


When shy albino Ansel finds a lost girl in his shed he wants to help her, but falling in love with a girl you don’t know can get tricky.

Martina Boone said...

Title: The Wind Walker
Genre: YA Paranormal
Email: kidlit (at) writeedge dot com

When a rebellious teen inherits an ancient battle and an archangel's sword, she must sacrifice the love of her soulmate to save humanity.

Pam Harris said...

Title: WANTS
Genre: Contemporary YA

When two girls discover that their boyfriends are lovers, high school cliques are reevaluated as this “love square” begins to unravel.


Wendy Delfosse said...

Title: Burying Elsie
Genre: Contemporary YA

As Elsie dives into drugs, sex & even hardcore shows, goody-goody Shawna must decide if helping her BFF is worth risking all she believes.


Nicole Thomas said...

Title: Scare Tactics
Genre: YA Contemp.
Pitch: When Leah agreed to meet Ari at the prom, she never expected to fall for the mastermind writer behind death's list.
E-mail: nicole@nicolethomas.net

Jessie Oliveros said...

Title: Pieces of Moon
Genre: YA magical realism/time travel
Pitch: When Tess travels back to fifteenth-century Maya, she must betray the soldier she loves to stop her time from becoming the End-of-Time.


Kerri Cuev said...

Thanks for this opportunity Shelli and Mary!

Title: Three Cheers for Cookies
Genre: MG

Oatmeal cookies are so
sweet. Sabotage could be a delicous treat. But revenge makes the recipe complete.

Editor Cassandra said...

Title: The Practice of Wearing Skin
Genre: YA Paranormal
Email: camarshallwrites@gmail.com

Pitch: Sofia meets hot grim reaper Theo and must choose: die normally and be remembered, or become a reaper too and let everyone forget she existed

140 exactly :) Thanks!

theartgirl said...

title: Mystery of the Tweed Coat
genre: paranormal MG
Email: colleen@myartsite.com

Maggie buys a used tweed coat and is haunted by a ghost who draws her into a mystery that has her solving more than she ever bargained for.

Unknown said...
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Bree said...

Title: Lock 19
Genre: Dystopian YA
Email: redridinghoodie(at)gmail(dot)com

After uncovering her dead brother's rebel ties, Eva joins a group of underground terrorists to stop her father's plans for a Utopian future.

Weronika Janczuk said...

GENRE: YA Literary Historical
EMAIL: weronika[dot]janczuk[at]gmail[dot]com

PITCH: Leukemic, 17-y.o. artistic genius Anna has a year left to live + she expects to spend it painting, n/ revolting against communism undergrd.

Cheryl Angst said...

TITLE: Nikko's Bond
GENRE: YA sci-fi (light)
EMAIL: cherylangst(at)gmail(dot)com


When his best friend is sentenced to death, Nikko must choose between saving her and betraying the soul he's been bonded to since birth.

Elizabeth Briggs said...

Thanks for this!

Title: Alternate
Genre: YA Sci-Fi

A nerdy teen is thrust into a war between alternate universes when she meets her double, the chosen one prophecized to end it.

Unknown said...
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Unknown said...
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Rebecca Gomez said...

GENRE: YA Verse, light fantasy
EMAIL: rjgomez08(at)aol(dot)com

PITCH: When 14-year-old Sharra’s connection to animals makes her the target of an invading army, she must learn to wield the link as a weapon and fight to save her home.

Ashley Maker said...

Title: Tug the Horse Girl
Genre: MG General Fiction

Pitch: Horse crazy Elliot finally gets her 1st horse, but he’s old & cranky & teaches her some goals can only be reached if you work hard for them.

Email: ashleydmaker@yahoo.com

RAD - Dot Painter said...

Title: The Lion Within
Genre: Realistic Fantasy

Pitch: Renna’s mauled by a lion in Africa. His venom gives her body cat-abilities. Renna must lie, kill and die in order to find value in her life.

Email: art(at)racheldillon(dot)com

Unknown said...

Thanks again for this contest!! :D

Title: Out of My Body
Genre: YA Paranormal (55,000 words)
Email: moni.bw at gmail dot com

Tanya’s To Do List

Ace her out-of-body experiences
Learn not to faint in class—God, especially not near her crush
Save Mom’s kidnapped soul

Catch My Words said...

Title: Being Bompsy Carleffa
Genre: YA - fiction

A teen, kidnapped into a freaking mob world run by his manipulative "dead" father, escapes then quests to save himself and someone he loves.


Angelica R. Jackson said...

Thanks for this opportunity, it was a fun challenge!

Title: Those Lost at Sea and Drowned
Genre: YA historical/ghost story
Email: strikingnotes(at)yahoo(dot)com

After surviving a horrific attack, Isabelle seeks justice for her murdered friends—only to face a hanging as the killers accuse her in turn.

140 exactly, whew!

Carolyn Abiad said...

Title: Burnt Amber
Genre: YA fantasy

Pitch: Three words best describe Sybil: Introvert, Exchange Student. Her entire life is like an OCD cocoon in a foreign land but she’s too independent for her own djinn world.

email: csabiad00@gmail dot com

lisa and laura said...

Awesome contest! Mary is going to have a tough time making a decision with all of these great pitches!

CL said...

Thank you for hosting another great contest!

Title: Princess Rex
Genre: picture book

P. Rex is not a locked-in-a-tower kind of princess. She crashes around the castle! She busts through battlement! But can she tame the terrible dragon before bedtime?


Melissa Dean said...

Genre: YA Paranormal

When Grace saves a guardian angel, she becomes entangled in a battle of heavenly porportions and learns the true meaning of soulmates.

Melissa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MarcyKate said...

Thank you for the opportunity!

Genre: YA ghost story
Email: marcykate (at) gmail.com

Tessa denies the 1st letter. She rationalizes the 2nd. When the accidents begin, there's no ignoring the ghosts in the theatre next door.

C.R. Evers said...

Another awesome contest! Thanks Shelli!

Title: Time Warden

Genre: YA adventure

e-mail ChristyEvers(at)att(dot)net

A rebellious teen is kidnapped and brainwashed into believing that he fell into a time-warp loophole that transported him to the year 1691.

Dawn Embers said...

Thank you for the opportunity.

Title: Tattle Tell
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Email: DawnEmbers@ymail.com

Pitch: Ephram is a reluctant snitch to the men in suits until a friend's secret means deciding between friendship and life as a tattle tale.

Tracey Joseph said...
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Tracey Joseph said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rachael Harrie said...

Title: From The Other Side
Genre: YA Paranormal
Email: rachael[dot]harrie[at]gmail[dot]com

Misfit Verity is murdered by the boy she loves and awakens with strange powers, uncontrollable rages, and an unquenchable desire for revenge

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

Title: Byrne Risk
Genre: MG dystopian SF
Email: susankayequinn@comcast.net

In a future where clones are slaves, Kate finds her clone caretaker has stolen wormhole engines and races to save her from the Peace Police.

Meredith McCardle said...

Title: Four Stones
Genre: YA historical fantasy
Email: merediththewriter(at)gmail(dot)com

Four Stones = (The Highlander - swords + sparkly gems) x (one spunky heroine + one reluctant hero) ^ 700 years of English history

Melissa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bethany C Morrow said...

Title: The Last Life Of Avrilis
Genre: YA Steampunk Dystopian
Email: Bethany.Morrow@ymail.com

Live, repeat, live, repeat. Lonely Avrilis can do it again - or she can save a boy meant to die and run from the hunters til time runs out.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this contest! It was great fun reading all the entries. Good luck, everyone.

Here's mine:

Title: Rupert and the Great Space Mix-Up
Genre: Middle-grade science-fiction
Email: sam[at]sirnewtonbooks[dot]com

Garden gnome look-alike aliens declare war on Earth and a geeky 11-year-old and his thumb-sucking sister are the only hope to save the world

Jeff Barnes said...

Title: Autokarmatic Rainbow
Genre: YA Magical Realism/Humor
email: Jbhollister(at)gmail(dot)com

Ander gets a bad batch of BC
Her bff is a chromopheliac
& after sknydping w friends, nak pics of her surface@school
Hello frshman year

Julie Hedlund said...

Thanks for this great contest! Here goes:

Genre: PB Humorous
Ginny McMaudy dreams of riding a roller coaster called DARE, but she’s too short. Can a special brand of magic called Foodoo help her grow?

Unknown said...

Title: Nocte Yin
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Email: jin.tina[a t]hotmail[d o t] com

Pitch: Nocte: average teen girl. Family: average villain clan. Problem: Girl going to Evil Academy. Big Problem: She doesn’t want to be evil.

Miles McG said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tracey Joseph said...

Title: Alice and Olivia
Genre: MG Contemporary
Email: tracey_joseph@msn.com

Pitch: Everyone thinks Alison's gone for good but twelve-year-old Olivia knows better, Alison would never leave--they pinkie promised she wouldn't.

Anonymous said...

Title: Order of Chaos
Genre: YA fantasy
Email: danimpa[at]aim[dot]com

Dana never dreamed she’d spring a kidnapped prince out of her father’s dungeons. But, in the end, is he the only one who needs to be freed?

Unknown said...

Awesome contest, thanks for hosting!

Title: The Tick-Tock Hearts
Genre: YA Steampunk/Mystery
Email: sesinkhorn [at] gmail [dot] com

Pitch: In Edwardian Chicago, Clara must avenge her dead father & stop a group of cyborg immortals fueled by synthetic hearts before they cage her.

Jamie said...

Title: Ivy and Blue
Genre: Contemporary YA
Email: jamielynnf(at)yahoo(dot)com

While living homeless in a city park, Ivy falls for a boy in a vegetative state and learns what it is to be a friend.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Thanks so much for doing this contest, Mary and Shelli.

Genre: YA urban fantasy
email: sleuthwood (at) sbcglobal (dot) net

A teenager learns she's half-mermaid and must accept being an inter-species freak if she's to reveal mermaids exist & what's killing them.

Carol Riggs said...

Genre: YA light science fiction
email: artzicarol[at]gmail[dot]com

With her brain waves replacing a patient's, Morgan must lose 100 lbs despite a live-in chef, a trio of enemies, and violent protesters.

Wow, you respond to all comments? Superwoman! To make it easier, my blog: http://carolriggs.blogspot.com/

Susan X Bradley said...

Thanks for the contest

Title: Beansville's Neighborhood Carnival
Genre: Older Picture Book
E-mail: bradley_susan(at)yahoo(dot).com

When Beansville’s favorite citizen, Amelia, falls ill again she can’t continue collecting donations for her organization so the town helps by putting on a carnival.

Ishta Mercurio said...

Genre: quirky humorous PB
E-mail: ishtamerc@gmail.com

Huge-haired Penelope tries to shrink her 'do, but learns that if you want to get noticed for the right things, it's not about the hair.

L.B. said...

Fun to see all the great pitches! Thanks for the opportunity.

Title: Stanley and the Letter (of utmost importance)
Genre: MG Fantasy
Email: leona.broberg [at] gmail [dot] com

Only 12-year-old Stanley can bridge two worlds by answering one riddle: when is a letter not a letter? Too bad he stinks at riddles.

whirligigdaisy said...

Title: 18
Genre: YA (Contemporary/Realistic)
Email: whirligigdaisy [at] yahoo [dot] com

Aging out of foster care, Brie finds luck and love in unlikely places as she hopes her knack for refurbishing antiques will pay the bills.

Sheri Dillard said...

Title: The Fairest of the Mall
Genre: humorous picture book
Email: thedillard5 at yahoo dot com

Goldie escapes to the city for a fun, bear-free afternoon with Rapunzel. But the day of dress-up at Fairytale Mall becomes too much to bear.

Page After Page said...

Name: M.D. Grace
Title: Soulmates
Genre: YA paranormal.
Email: pageafterpage0@gmail.com

Luke’s role, Grim Reaper trainee has been the same for a century, but now something is different. He’s drawn to a young girl whom he follows her throughout her life.

Carolyn V. said...

Title: Incognito Burrito and Other Things I did on my Trip to Mexico.
Genre: YA contemporary
Email: carolynVwrites(at)gmail(dot)com

Note to self-today I will not:
Hit hot guy with car,
Trip over dead body
Find out hot guy's a spy.
Provoke killer.
Days like this suck.

Woo hoo! Thanks Shelli & Mary.
Good luck everyone! =D

Unknown said...
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jessica said...

Title: Waking the Binding Tree
Genre: YA Fiction
email: jlhendricks924 at yahoo dot com

When Elliana frees the spirit of a malevolent ancestor, she must hone her own powers to defend the memories and histories of her loved ones.

Unknown said...

TITLE The Secret of Elijah
GENRE YA Historical Fiction
EMAIL: shavriluk@bellsouth.net
Leah searches for her brother Elijah, kidnapped by a hoodoo conjurer, and falls for both a man-ghost and a Civil War soldier who aid her.

Melissa said...

Again it's a fab contest!

Title: Sammie McCloudy, M.R.I.T. (Mind Reader in Training)
Genre: MG Magical Realism/Humor
E-mail: MSSnow2000@aol.com

Surly Sammie must save her baby brother. Even if it means embracing her unwanted superpower and hanging up her leopard-print leotard.