In the past few months while my blog has been idle, I’ve been feverishly revising and editing my novel Learn Away the Indian. (There was also a lovely trip to Europe, but that’s for another post). My wonderful critique group tackled the pages in large chunks and offered great suggestions for improvement. My front-line beta readers helped with pacing, repetition, and pointed out all those pesky little a’s and the’s I so frequently omit.
It paid off!
I entered the manuscript in the Pitch Wars contest hosted by Brenda Drake and landed myself a spectacular mentor, historical fiction writer Heather Webb! She’s the author of the upcoming novel, Becoming Josephine.
Over the next month, she’ll help me get my book, my query, and my pitch in tiptop shape, and ready for the final stage of the contest: the agent round. January 22nd and 23rd, a dozen first-rate agents will peruse the pitches of the 52 finalists (myself among them, yay!!) and request material of their favorites. The author/mentor team with the most requests wins.
I love to win!
But in so many ways, I already have. Through the initial phase of the contest I met several new authors reaching out to the world with their manuscripts, just like me. Camaraderie, friendship, learning from each others’ journey—these are my prizes. An amazing author and editor is reading my book right now! Her critique is invaluable. The chance to get my work in front of agents—whether or not I get the most requests—what better award than this?
I’m honored. I’m excited. And, yes, I’m ready to win!