Pitch Wars Wishlist

Hello Fellow Writers!

I think it’s important to start this post off by telling you a little bit about me and my mentoring style. My name is Megan and I’ve worked as an assistant editor in NYC for almost two years. Just recently, my internship with Corvisiero Literary Agency was announced. Prior to that, I had two internships with indie fantasy publishing houses where I acted as a line and content editor. On top of that, I read way too many books for my health (jk, no such thing), talk about writing, and freelance edit YA & MG stories. My non-book related activities include: hiking, binge watching television shows on Netflix, playing with my dogs, and traveling whenever I can.

For my first time as a mentor, I am specifically looking for YOUNG ADULT stories. They’re my favorite audience category to read and have sent me weeping into my bed on several dozen occasions. Also, I just love the idea of books being written for children and teens and want to see as many of these wonderful stories as possible.

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What My Mentoring Style Is Like

I’d consider myself a cheerleader for the stories I love. I want to push writers so they can get the words on the page as close as possible to what’s in their heads. I’m a very open and communicative person so I encourage questions, ideas, and new routes you think will help your work as we go forth. Nothing makes me happier than everything clicking into place.

Before we begin edits, I’d like for you to tell me anything you’re concerned about or anything you’d specifically like me to pay attention to before diving in. I’d also like for you to tell me what you love most about your story.

Our first round of edits will be focused on the larger picture:

  • How’s your pacing?
  • Are there any obvious plot holes?
  • Do your characters and their motivations make sense?
  • Are you doing enough to convey your world to your audience?
  • Does your story have a full and completed arc?

All of these topics and more will be addressed in an edit letter after I read your manuscript. For me, this is often a few pages and consists of what I liked about your manuscript, what isn’t working, and suggestions on how to incorporate necessary changes. Once you receive this and go over it, I’d love to discuss where you stand, what’s going through your head, and of course any inquiries you may have. We will also work out a schedule to have these changes made.

The second round of edits will still include the bullet points above but will also be focused on line editing and proofreading. Here along with any big picture edits, you’ll get an annotated manuscript from me that will highlight:

  • Grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors
  • Sentences that aren’t adding to your story, are repetitive, or seem out of place.
  • Tense issues
  • Consistency of your writing style

The goal of this edit is get everything polished for the agent round. Of course you’re welcome to ask anything about publishing beforehand, but any lingering questions would be best at this time. My ultimate goal as a mentor is to make your manuscript shine while keeping in mind the message of your story and what you want readers to take away from your world.

What I’m Looking For

Onto the fun part: what manuscripts I’m interested in. As I mentioned above, I am ONLY taking YOUNG ADULT.  I will NOT take graphic novels, new adult, or memoirs. The genres I am eager to read are:

Science Fiction

  • Dystopian/Apocalyptic
  • Space Operas/Space Exploration
  • Futuristic Societies
  • Present Day but with a Twist
  • Steam Punk
  • Cyber Punk
  • Virtual Reality

Fantasy

  • Fairytale Retellings
  • Magical Realism
  • Contemporary Fantasy
  • Urban Fantasy
  • Dark or Magical Fantasies

Contemporary

  • Dark Contemporary or Contemporary with a Twist

Elements I Shout for in a Story

  • Diversity in terms of characters, setting, and culture
  • Gray Morality
  • Strong Women
  • Soft/geeky characters
  • Queer characters that have an arc larger than their sexuality
  • Anti-heroes
  • Strong friendships and sibling relationships
  • Complex family dynamics
  • Strong mental health rep
  • Slow burn relationships of any kind
  • Uncommon hobbies
  • Worlds I can sink my teeth into
  • Emotional gut punches/angst
  • Wholesome best friends, especially best friends to lovers
  • Badass group of friends who take on some role and often explore their relationships with one another

What I Don’t Want

  • Epic or High Fantasy
  • Stories that have animal abuse
  • Contemporaries centered entirely around romance
  • Paranormal, Supernatural, or Horror Stories (Note for paranormal/supernatural stories: I will take stories with magic or magical creatures. What I CANNOT take is anything involving exorcisms, hauntings, possessions, and similar paranormal elements.)
  • Historical Fiction (There is an exception to this – if your story takes place in a certain time period, but isn’t necessarily recreating real life events, I’ll take it. I just don’t think I’m the best fit for history retelling pieces).

Favorite Books

To give you a better sense of what I like to read and my tastes, here’s a by no means completed list of some older and newer YA books.

  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
  • The Chaos Walking series by Patrick Ness
  • Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman
  • They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera
  • Nyxia Triad by Scott Reintgen
  • The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
  • This Savage Song by V.E. Schwab
  • Proxy by Alex London
  • When the Moons Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore
  • Forest of A Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao
  • How to Make a Wish by Ashley Blake
  • Timekeeper by Tara Sim
  • Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glen Marsh
  • Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert
  • Warcross by Marie Lu
  • Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde
  • Bruja Born by Zoraida Cordova
  • Nothing Left to Burn by Heather Ezell
  • You’ll Miss me When I’m Gone by Rachel Lynn Solomon

Favorite TV Shows

  • Stranger Things
  • Fullmetal Alchemist
  • Avatar the Last Airbender
  • Breaking Bad
  • Dear White People
  • Cloak & Dagger
  • Jessica Jones
  • The Punisher
  • The 100
  • Sense8
  • This is Us
  • Shameless

I think that’s everything. Thank you so much for reading and I can’t wait to see the stories that appear in my inbox.

You should check out all of the other mentors HERE 😀

Xx

Megan

 

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13 thoughts on “Pitch Wars Wishlist

  1. Hi, Megan!
    How would you feel about a dark comedy dystopian YA manuscript with 4 unique POVs? ( Think Black Mirror meets Mean Girls). The POVs alternate each chapter, and it’s 2 boys and 2 girls narrating.
    Thanks for reading!
    Best,
    Mina Fears

    Like

  2. Hey Megan,
    Really hyped to submit my manuscript for you to have a look at in pitch wars! I’m writing some contemporary fantasy, which (I hope) is angsty and a lil funny at the same time, with what I hope are- as you say- queer characters that have “story arcs larger than their sexuality”.
    I am very excited now!!

    Like

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