Last night I couldn't sleep. That happens when I'm amped up and excited. And boy the last two days have been an exciting ride. Brenda Drake's Pitch Wars wrapped up yesterday and I am thrilled to have received a request for a query and the first 25 pages for my contemporary Middle Grade.
More than the reward though, I discovered a lot about the process of contests and the importance of putting yourself out there. Working with Veronica Bartles was invaluable. As a result of Veronica's tutelage, I reworked the beginning of my manuscript (which before this I'd assumed was perfect...uh-huh) and this made for a much stronger story overall.
Another wonderful byproduct of the experience was the people I got to meet.The level of camaraderie displayed throughout this whole contest was amazing. As a member of Team Magic, I got to personally know my teammates both through their work and the emails we shared. And the Twitter feed was awash with congratulatory tweets for those who received requests and support and encouragement for those who didn't.
As a writer who published her first book by meeting an editor face to face at a local conference, the idea of online contests seemed really foreign to me. But the publishing world has radically changed since 2007. Had it not been for my critique partner Kimberly Ann Miller giving me yet another nudge, my methods for getting published would still be archaic. But now I'm proud to say I've entered the twenty-first century.
If you're interested in reading my final pitch and a first page excerpt of my Middle Grade, Miracle Meggie, here it is: http://i-am-so-grateful.blogspot.com/2014/01/pitch-wars-alt-vb-13-miracle-meggie.html While you are there, check out the other great middle grade pitches. Maybe you'll be inspired to enter a contest and join me in this century!