And this year I'm mentoring MG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The question is, why should YOU, the future upcoming talent, submit to ME, the who-are-you-again author / editor?
I'll tell you. In fact, as all great authors do, I'll SHOW you.
That's right, you, my chosen mentee, and I will become besties. We'll hold hands, swap last Rolos, have movie nights and tear-filled pep-talks, and become life-long friends. Oh, and we'll do a bit of writing if we have time.
Who wouldn't want this? NO ONE.
But you see, I'm an author and I've been on the other side of the divider. My debut - Winell Road: Beneath the Surface - has dipped its toe in many a slushy puddle, been through many a revision, and been smashed with the subjectivity bat over and over. I UNDERSTAND HOW IT FEELS. And just because I'm now published, doesn't mean these experiences go away. They don't.
Your book is precious; I know this. It needs respect and a tender touch. Luckily, I have large supplies of these in my bag.
I'm also a freelance editor and super proud of all the authors I've worked with, and I will never give up on any of them, not until they've reached their goals. And for those that have, I'm their number one fan. Ask them. I'm in it for the long haul.
To top it off, I was also a slushie for NestPitch, another writing and pitching contest, and got to work with the incredible Michelle Barry (you should click here and go follow her) on her MG sci-fi retelling, Moongarden. Since then, she has signed with Peter Knapp at New Leaf Literary Agency in New York! You see, I know MG!
Next question: what do I wanna see in my inbox? I'll tell you.
I don't particularly have a favourite genre. I will and do read pretty much everything. However, I've currently had my fill of sad, heart wrenching tales about kids whose parents have died or whose siblings are ill or whose pets are on their last legs, and so on. I'm at a place in my life where sadness isn't all that welcome. More than anything else, though, definitely not a sad ending – ABSOLUTE NO NO for me. And anyway, it's mid-grade; give those kids some happy feels.
But saying that, if your book does include the odd sniffle-snuffle, is unique, and you're 100% sure it will blow my mind, be sure to send it my way. Just warn me to get out the box of Kleenex. Three of my most favourite books ever are The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon, A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness and Skellig by David Almond. Masterpieces that break me every time with their emotional beauty.
I do tend to lean toward novels with a bit of humour and / or a dark, disturbing nightmarish side. My favourite book of all time is The Uninvited by Liz Jensen. Yes, OK, it's an adult book, but it's one disturbing read. And, tossing stupid old trends out of the window, I love zombies and portal fantasies. But again, your novel has got to be unique. A completely squeaky new approach in telling the flesh-eating, vortex-hopping stories, otherwise Houston, we have a problem.
So, on a scale of 'take a peep' 'happily read' 'gimme' and 'grabby hands', here's a quick run down.
Sci-fi – grabby hands
Fantasy – grabby hands
Contemporary – happily read
Horror – grabby hands
Historical – take a peep
Paranormal – gimme
Fairy-tale / retellings – happily read
Mystery – gimme
Action / Adventure – gimme
Humourous – grabby hands
So there you go.
And for every author who submits but I don't choose, I promise to offer some feedback - might not be straight away, but I will give you my tuppence worth, nonetheless.
If you want to ask me any questions about my tastes, or want to know anything else about me to help you decide whether you should submit to me or not, just pop a question in the comments below, and I'll answer as best I can!
Now, submit to me, and let the magic commence.
For more info, and details of other mentors - who are not as good as me - see below.
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