Friday, April 1, 2011

BlogFest Contest: My Twitter-Sized Pitch

Writer extraordinaire, Shelley Watters is hosting a BlogFest contest this week. The winner will receive a full manuscript request from literary agent Suzie Townsend of Fine Print Literary Management. What do you have to do to be a part of the contest? *Gulp* Write a Twitter-sized pitch. That's right, narrow down your manuscript to just a 140 characters.
Since it took me (and my writing partner, Yelena Casale) four revisions to get the manuscript, four versions of the synopsis, and thirteen drafts of the query to feel halfway happy, the TwitterPitch should take me about... any guesses? Well, this is draft number three. Please give me your thoughts, comments, and questions. Don't hold back, I can take the heat. Help me make this pitch smolder!
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Word Count: 80k
OLD PITCH: Submit to madness, demon enslavement, or bonding to a vile angel - Cassie’s out of options. If she can’t master her powers, she’ll lose all.


NUMBER 1: Enslavement to a vile demon or vicious angel. Half of each in her blood, Cassie must master her power to open dimensional doors or lose all.

NUMBER 2: As a Key, half demon/half angel, Cassie can open portals btw worlds. If, that is, she can master her power without being driven mad by it.
Ok, now it's time for your input. Remember, the pitch can only be 140 characters long.
Thank you all for your input. Here is the final pitch based on all comments. I appreciate the support! Please let me know your thoughts on the final.

FINAL PITCH: Half demon, half angel, Cassie can open portals between worlds, but she must master her power or risk insanity and losing her freedom.


  1. While each element on its own sounds intriguing, I'm not sure how it all fits together. I'd like to know what Cassie's powers are as well.

  2. You've got good examples of the stakes of her choice. Can you take out one stake and add an adjective about her character?

  3. Thanks for your comments! Cassie is a Key, offspring of a demon and fallen angel that can open portals between worlds, but I have no idea how to sum that up in the 140 word pitch.

    So, I like the idea of adding an adjective to describe Cassie, just not sure what to put. Any ideas?

  4. Thanks for participating! I'd take out the 'submit to madness'.

    Here's my try at rewording:

    Her choices: demon enslavement, or bonding to a vile angel. Half of each in her blood, Cassie must master her powers or she'll loose all.

    Great job and good luck with the contest!

  5. I like what you've got, but it doesn't seem like she's out of options, so much as doesn't like the ones she's got. :) I agree with others tho that knowing what her powers are is probably more prudent. Good job so far!

  6. I agree with the other comments. To rewrite it, could you maybe interchange the choices with her powers and how she may lose them? I don't know if that helps much. Love the blog by the way!

  7. I like Shelley's post best. That's what I was going to recommend.

  8. Thanks for the feedback everyone! This is why I love the writing community. Great ideas! Please keep them coming.

  9. After reading both a couple times, I think I like the second pitch better. It seems to flow better. Love the half and half aspect. I'd read it for sure. Also, love your corgi. :)

  10. I like number 2. Much more clear. Great premise!
    All the best.

  11. I like the dichotomy of angel/demon rather than the three choices; makes it more clear. I like what Shelley did for you, although I'd retain madness as a possible specific outcome. I don't think It's that important to say that she's a Key because that requires explanation and you only have 140 characters.

    Thanks for your comment to my pitch. hope this was helpful.

  12. Number 1 pitch feels the strongest so far. Good sense of what is at stake. Great job!

  13. I liked all 3 pitches but felt they needed to be combined somehow. My example pitch is below:

    Half demon, half angel, Cassie can open portals btw worlds, but she must master her power or risk insanity and losing everything. (this gives you 11 extra characters to work with)

    In any event I like the premise of the story and something I know I would like to read. If you're looking for a beta let me know.

    Thank you for stopping by my blog earlier your crit was helpful and I posted up a 2nd entry. Would love your feedback on the 2nd one.

    Thnk you and good luck!


  14. I like the second revision the best of the three, and I also like S.A. Hussey's suggestion. The story is intriguing--I'd read more.

    I revised my pitch based on the comments I received, including yours, and posted a new version. Thank you so much for your help.

  15. I know this is going to sound a bit crazy in 140 chracters.I am being driven mad! LOl. BUT, what will she lose? I think you could the KEy part, maybe say as hlaf-demon, half angel,. Also, the btw should be a word, even though it is Twitter style. YOu can also lose the "by it" part if you need to. GOOD LUCK. and thanks for commenting. Lots of help : )

  16. Agree with Bekah that you don't need the "key" part (it will be explained in the book, but it's too much to explain here). Just Half-demon, half angel, Cassie can open portals... etc. Oh! Just saw S.A. Hussey's--I think that's on the right track. Good luck!

  17. wow, lots of info in 140 characters. the revision is strong and i bet getting stronger as you revise. i could see where others thought to drop the key part, but if you leave it i think it isn't a negative. unless you really have something else that will draw readers in instead of the key part...good luck and keep writing!
    douglas esper

  18. efinitely number two, though I would take out "as a key" and "that is."

    Demons and angels are awesome. I'd love to read this book.

  19. I like the second one best! I'd take "btw" and put "to". It may not be literally exact, but it conveys the idea without making someone try to guess exactly what you meant by "btw" (By The Way?, Between? Between The Worlds? Break The Winter?)

  20. I like the revisions and I like where you are going with this.

    Wondering if you can start with "Half demon/half angel Cassie must master her power to open portals between worlds before.... [insert stakes]" might want to add something specific, if you have room.

    Great job! Sounds like an interesting story ;o)

  21. Enslavement to a vile demon or vicious angel. Half of each in her blood, Cassie must master her power to open dimensional doors or lose all.

    I like this one. Except I'd go for:

    Half-demon, half-angel, Cassie must master her power to open dimensional doors or lose everything.

    Short and sweet.
    Good luck,
    Robin Delany

  22. I love your final pitch. It hooks and gives the plot. I have nothing to add to it. Excellent job!!! Good luck! :D

  23. Really like the final pitch. Well done.

  24. You've got a great final pitch and a cool story! Good job!

  25. Your final pitch is very intriguing but I do have a question. Why would she lose her freedom? Because she's insane and they are going to lock in her in a padded room? Or is it something different at stake.

    Good luck! I'd like to read your book.

  26. It's good, but maybe you should end with "losing her freedom and then her sanity." I don't know, it just sounds better to me. Overall, it sounds like a great pitch!

  27. Half demon, half angel, Cassie can open portals between worlds, but she must master her power or risk insanity and losing her freedom.

    I like this one because if gives me all I want to know. She is half/torn able to move into each but at what risk? Good luck :)

  28. Thank you all for your feedback. It was so tough to get the story into 140 characters. I appreciate the support and wish you all the best of luck in the contest!