Tuesday, 6 May 2014


Well, that month is done and dusted. April 1st: Fool's Day didn't stop me from cringing when I pressed the send button to two competitions, and the start of Camp NaNo.

 I entered the #NestPitch Contest where I submitted a 35 word pitch plus the first 300 words of a MS. Though I wasn't successful, it was a useful experience in getting that 'elevator pitch' right. How do you hone your 50k + MS into those few words? It's hard. Try it out.

The other competition I entered was the SI Leeds Literary Prize. I thought I'd left it too late to enter, but they extended the closing date so I thought, what the heck. I pressed send and submitted the full MS. Watch this space.

CampNaNo went okay. The plan was to write 50K. Thankfully I was able to change my word count, something you can't do in the November NaNo, and completed a little over 30K towards my new WIP. I'm excited by this new project.

Oh yeah, there was the #April Extravaganza #ukyaday, part of Project UKYA organised by the lovely Lucy. There were lots of UK Young Adult Fiction promotion, sharing author and book recommendations, and a readathon. I read Shattered by Teri Terry, the last instalment in the Slated trilogy; a dystopian thriller about a girl on a journey to find her true identity. I was running with Kyla to the very end. Then there was A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness, a wonderful story about a boy dealing with his nightmare. It ate me up and left me crying. Bloody brilliant! And Minty by Christina Banach, her first published novel; a wonderful, poignant story about loss.

Another pitch! I went to the SCBWI workshop: Practical Pitching with Sara O'Connor from Hot Key Books. We worked on our MS title, hook, strapline and three sentence pitch then pitched via 'Hangouts.' It was an invaluable day. I came out with a revised title, a pitch I'm really happy with *thumbs up* and I'm now ready for the next step.

Duh duh duuuuhhh! Submitting to agents. Arh!


  1. Sounds like you've been working very hard Debbie. Good luck with it all x

  2. Congratulations, Debbie! Best of luck with your submissions. This post really resonates with me since I'll be attending an SCBWI Conference in August. I've registered for an intensive where I'm required to give a pitch of my MS - something I've never done. Yikes! My stomach does somersaults just thinking about it. Your courage is inspiring. Thanks!