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Good News & Bad News: Trends in Pitch Wars submissions

As some of you know, I mentored in FicFest earlier this year. It is a contest in the same vein as Pitch Wars (finalists receive mentorship before an agent round) so I was surprised at how many differences there were in the submissions I saw. First, the good news. After that I’ll talk about some tips that will help you get past an agent’s slushpile once Pitch Wars is all over. The Good News The good news is that Pitch Wars submissions were incredibly high quality. Much higher than the agent’s average slush pile. You guys are already going to beat out a lot of your competition, and I’m so freaking proud I could make embarrassing squealing noises, but I’m going to try to refrain and give you hard data instead. -Good queries: The majority of queries I saw were...
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Stats on Pitch Wars Submissions & Requests

I wanted to do a quick post on the stats for the entries I received in Pitch Wars (an online writing contest, for those curious minds who haven’t heard of it). I’ll touch on genre breakdowns, what genres I am requesting, and the quality of queries I saw. I’m not going to post my overall submission numbers, because as it turns out, Pitch Wars mentors are just as human (and therefore susceptible to the agonies and ecstasies of comparison) as the mentees are. What I will say is that if you subbed to me, barring the possibility of a battle for my final entry, you have a 1.7% chance of becoming my mentee. Which sounds terrible, unless you then realize that when you query an agent, you have around a .03% chance of signing with them. And if you get...
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Agent Life with Jennifer Johnson-Blalock

Today I’m talking agenting life with the multi-talented Jennifer Johnson-Blalock of Liza Dawson Associates. This is her first year on the star-studded agent lineup for Pitch Wars, and she has some juicy teasers at the end of this interview about what she’s hoping to find amongst the mentee manuscripts.   What is your favorite part of being an agent? Unquestionably, my favorite part of being an agent is getting to work with my clients. They’re the talent. I facilitate bringing their work to a bigger audience, but this business begins and ends with the writers. There’s no feeling of excitement that quite matches the one I have when I’m reading a manuscript and start to think, “This is really good… I think I might love this.” And in addition to being talented, my clients are kind, supportive, generous people. I’ve...
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