|Posted by heidinorrod on July 29, 2015 at 5:20 PM||comments (0)|
Welcome to the Adult Pitch Online Conference! (Also known as #AdPit on Twitter)
Here are the board rules for participating writers.
The genre specific peer critique boards at the top are for critiquing each other’s work prior to the industry professionals dates.
Only post chapters from your finished and polished manuscripts.
Only ADULT and NEW ADULT manuscripts are permitted.
No self-published works. Only never before published manuscripts are allowed.
Any GENRE, including NON-FICTION is allowed.
Submission Dates for the critique conference begins August 1st, 2015. Submissions will remain open throughout the span of the conference. You may post your work at any time between August 1 - August 10th. However, the agents and editors will be arriving on the boards on August 6th. It is in your best interest to have your work posted before this date.
On August 5th, it is YOUR responsibility to have your work posted in the ‘Final Submissions’ boards titled; Query, Synopsis, First Page and First Chapter. Here are the rules about posting in the review section for the industry professionals.
You MUST start a new thread for your manuscript.
Use the title line: TITLE: Author (or Pen Name): Genre: And NA or A for age category. Such as; SHE, GLADIATOR: Heidi Norrod: Historical Fiction: A
Post your manuscript under EACH heading, using the SAME title line. (You can post only what you want, but I advise you to post under all of them, Query, Synopsis, First Page & First Chapter - it gives you more of chance to get seen by the industry professionals.)
On August 6th - 8th, the industry professionals will begin reading through the submissions and making requests. They are allowed in the boards through the end of the conference on August 10th. You are welcome to continue critiquing each others work in the GENRE - PEER CRITIQUE section of the boards throughout the entirety of the conference.
This shouldn’t have to be said, but please remain professional and respectful through the conference. If the need arises and anyone has any problems, please let me or one of my associates know and we will take the necessary actions to see that it stops.
I will be posting a series of writing-how-to posts on the website’s blog during the course of the contest. My cohorts @MTelschWilliams, @NCTFowler, @SidneyTBlake and I (@hrnorrod) will also be keeping a watch on #AdPit throughout the conference if you have any questions, just post on Twitter using #adpit or @ us, and we will get back to you as soon as possible. You can also contact @AdultPitch.
Enjoy this free online conference!
Thanks for joining us,
The Adult Pitch Crew
|Posted by heidinorrod on June 11, 2014 at 8:40 PM||comments (0)|
A new love will test the boundaries of passion between a privileged boy next door and the tattooed, blue-haired girl who helps him embrace his wild side...
Nate has developed quite a playboy reputation around campus. It's not that he doesn't respect or trust women; he doesn't trust himself. The men in Nate’s family are prone to abusive behavior—a dirty secret that Nate’s been running from his entire life—so Nate doesn't do relationships. But he can’t help himself around one girl…
Jessie is strong, independent, and works at a tattoo parlor. Nate can’t resist getting close to her, even if it’s strictly a friendship. But it doesn't take long for Nate to admit that what he wants with Jessie is more than just friendly.
With Jessie, he can be himself and explore what he’s always felt was a terrifying darkness inside him. Even when Nate begins to crave her in a way that both shocks and horrifies him, Jessie still wants to know every part of him. Testing their boundaries together will take a trust that could render them inseparable… or tear them apart.
Mother, wife, reader, dreamer. Christina lives in the Midwest with her husband and son--her two favorite guys. She's addicted to lip gloss and salted caramel everything. She believes in true love and kissing, so writing romance novels has become a dream job.
Author of the Between Breaths series from Penguin. ALL OF YOU, BEFORE YOU BREAK and WHISPER TO ME available now, PROMISE ME THIS on October 7th, 2014.
Also the creator of Tags-n-Stones (dot com) jewelry.
Connect with Christina:
|Posted by heidinorrod on January 27, 2014 at 3:15 PM||comments (0)|
Guest Post by Molly Pinto Madigan on her success with last October’s Adult Pitch (#AdPit)
By Molly Pinto Madigan
That's all you have to summarize the quintessence of your book. Oh, and while you're at it, you need to make it dazzling enough to catch an agent's eye: a snappy, summer sparkler that will blind with its brilliance and stand out against the annoyingly clogged Twitter feed. "For cripessake, we're novelists," you say. "140 characters couldn't adequately describe an exceptionally dull pack of chewing gum, let alone a completed masterpiece of literary achievement!"
I hear you. I feel your pain. I question your judgment in using the word cripessake, but, hey, you're a neologist. I dig it. Save some of that panache for your Twitter pitch, you! Okay, so the truth of the matter is: it's a miserable pain in the arse trying to squeeze an intelligible pitch into a single tweet, but it's good for you. First of all, it's a (hideously painful) lesson in precision, in making every word count; you have to be concise when you only have 140 characters, minus the #AdPit hashtag and (if you're good and/or masochistic) the genre, to sell your soul -- uh, I mean, manuscript. Sitting down in front of your empty tweet, thoughts like "Can I abbreviate chupacabra?" or "Do you think they'll still get it if I omit all the vowels in sequoia?" will undoubtedly surface. These are trying times, my literary friends, for the answer to such questions is, invariably, no. No one will understand your pitch if you invent contractions where there are none or abbreviate words from foreign tongues. And no, you can't spell sequoia without the vowels. That's the desperation talking! You need take a deep breath, go eat a sandwich because you're clearly delirious, and hone that pitch. Push through the tears. Perfect it (or at least throw some of the vowels back in), and get it out there, because, hey, it worked for me.
Yes, that's right. I know what you're thinking: how did someone who wrote a book about chupacabras kicking it old school up in the sequoias land an agent? Well, I hate to burst your proverbial bubble, but I made that whole thing up for teaching purposes. Feel free to write that crazy adventure, though! And while you ponder what that plot might look like, here's a pitch I used when I participated in #AdPit last October:
@mpintomadigan: Halloween in Salem : A bored undergrad gets more than she bargained for when she meets a man who sings the shadows awake. #NA #TamLin #AdPit
Nothing too special, right? But it was enough to pique an agent's interest. The luminous Laura Zats of Red Sofa Literary 'favorited' the tweet, which meant I got to send her the first chapter. Then the whole manuscript. And then, The Call. Yes, capital T, capital C. The Call, that legend, the unagented author's Holy Grail. It was terrifying in its glory, but Laura was great and liked Doctor Who, and I signed with her in the beginning of November. She's a veritable SuperAgent who is cool and quirky and gets all my weird jokes. And the rest? Well, the rest is history. (And, yes, I did sneak in an extra hashtag because my novel is a retelling of a ballad, and because I'm particularly deranged.)
That's all you have to do with your Twitter pitch: stir up interest, leave them wanting more. And with a little bit of luck, maybe you'll really connect with an agent who really connects with you, and the two of you will live happily ever after in a literary land where chupacabras like to chill in ridiculously tall conifers.
Wishing you the best of luck this #AdPit season,
P.S. On second thought, I'm calling dibs on the chupacabra story. My mom's a lawyer, so no funny business!
P.P.S. Follow me on Twitter, and I'll reconsider. I might be willing to negotiate terms.
P.P.P.S. 'Like' my Facebook page, and I'll write that book for you.
About the author: Self-proclaimed poet and songstress, Molly Pinto Madigan loves roses, old ballads, faery stories, and beaches, where she spends her days indulging her mermaid nature. In her spare time she drinks tea, makes music, and writes novels about thinly-veiled versions of herself. She is currently working on book three of her OF BLOOD AND ROSES trilogy. Visit her world at www.mollypintomadigan.wordpress.com and www.facebook.com/mollypintomadigan
|Posted by heidinorrod on January 14, 2014 at 8:40 PM||comments (0)|
GUESS WHAT TIME IT IS AGAIN???!!!!
That’s right - it’s time for #AdPit! An open Twitter pitch party for writers of adult works. Again like last time only adult complete and polished manuscripts should be pitched.
DATE: 5 Feb. 2014
TIME: 8.00 a.m. - 8.00 p.m. EST (New York Time)
What is Adult Pitch (or#AdPit)?
It is a twitter pitch contest open for all authors of Adult or New Adult fiction and nonfiction. –Sorry but no picture books through young adult will be accepted.
If you’ve ever done #pitmad or #pitchmas and the like, then this is the same thing. In the vein of #pitchsqueak (which is for picture books), #AdPit is for adult works.
New to twitter pitches? Then you are probably asking what the heck is a pitch -
A twitter pitch constitutes one (1) 140 character tweet on twitter, plus the hashtag #AdPit. If possible and it isn’t clear from the pitch, then add the genre.
An Example – Under the explosive Vesuvius, convicted murderess Tamar must decide who to trust before the Roman Army catches up to her. #AdPit HistFic
~ Only pitch completed and edited manuscripts. If you aren’t ready to send out the whole manuscript right now, then you aren’t ready to pitch it.
~ Only pitch once an hour. This helps ease the congestion on the #hashtag the day of #AdPit.
~ If you are pitching more than one manuscript, stagger it out over the hour. Please don’t dump six different pitches at the top of every hour.
~ Remember to leave the favoriting to the participating agents and editors. If you like someone else’s pitch please either retweet it or @ the author directly.
~ If you receive a favorite from an agent or editor, scroll back through the feed and see what they want to have submitted, or simply follow the submission guidelines on their websites.
There will not be a list of participating agents and editors as it is an open party, which means all are invited. Rest assured there will be several lurking and they’ll be perusing the hashtag throughout the day. I’ll try to announce them as they show up on the feed.
If you have questions, I’ll be checking comments.
|Posted by heidinorrod on September 23, 2013 at 3:40 PM||comments (0)|
Looking ahead to the month of October, here are some free resources, lesson plans, and activities from Scholastic for teachers and parents to use with kids.
October Craft Ideas Fill your classroom with pumpkins, owls, bats, and a friendly ghost or two with these spooky craft projects.
Classroom Activities for HalloweenMath games, creative writing projects, and fun activities for Halloween-themed learning
Pumpkin Time Unit Plan These lesson plans combine pumpkins with language arts, science, and math skills to create fun activities for students.
Soar with Bats! Students will learn all about bats, as well as valuable skills for research projects.
StudyJams! The Skeletal System Help your students learn about the human skeletal system with this multimedia activity and quiz!
We are also excited to announce that we are now accepting submissions for theScholastic Art & Writing Awards
The annual Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the nation’s longest-running, most prestigious recognition initiative for creative teens, is now open and offering more opportunities than ever before for all public, private and home schooled students in grades 7-12. Deadlines for art and writing submissions vary by region, occurring throughout the winter months and national Award winners will be announced in March 2014. For more information about the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards or the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, visit www.artandwriting.org.
|Posted by heidinorrod on September 20, 2013 at 4:20 PM||comments (0)|
Tales from my writing strike –
Writing can be so frustrating. It can make a person bitter beyond resolve. It can create the biggest jealousy demon you’ve ever seen. It can make you quit. It can make you want to quit. It can make you want to crawl off under a rock and never show your face again. It can make you angry. It can make you mad.
“We are all mad here?” “I’m afraid so - but I’ll tell you a secret all the best people are.” – Good grief Alice! Get out of my head! You too, Hatter! Shoo! GET!!
Ah, but the bad thing is - they both have a point. I think all writers are mad - at least to some point. We have to be, or we wouldn’t keep setting ourselves up to be gluttons for punishment. Because face it, we all dream so highly and so many of us have a very, very long journey ahead of us. A journey of bitterness, hard work, horrid self-doubt and of course rejection, so much rejection, that’s the jaunt we have all consciously chosen to take - the only reasonable explanation is because we are all completely nuts.
Sometimes, it all gets to be too much. It does, at least for me - but I may be very different from everyone else. So, that is why I chose to put myself of a writing strike, which lasted a month in some aspects - read on – –
Writing can easily become an obsession and rightly so. Especially with such things happening like pitch contests and twitter pitch parties, then don’t forget all the bright shiny conferences (either in person or on the internet) - these things call to writers. They make them yearn. They add dead wood to the already flaming fire within writers. (Actually to be fair, it may be easier to say it’s like throwing gasoline on an already out of control fire.) They spark the natural desire for competition that resides in ALL of us, writers or not.
But please don’t misunderstand - I have nothing against these pitch parties. I’m just as guilty as the next person to compete. In fact, a twitter pitch landed me a request, that bled into a revise and resubmit email, which prompted a full manuscript request. I still haven’t heard back from the said agent, but it goes without saying that these sorts of competitions allows a hopeful, dreamy writer to catch an agent or editor’s curiosity. They also help you find potential critique partners and new writing friends. ----- They can also cause A LOT of stress.
Stress weakens anyone’s muse. In fact, I think my muse packed up her bags and took off for Tahiti without me. But before I went on strike to give her a break, she was like an engine misfiring. I’d get blasts of ideas for books, plot twists for said books, and sometimes urges to delete the whole darn thing. Before I chose to break - I started FOUR new novels. Yes, four. And, I’d have to take several hours to count how many pages of notes, brain blasts and sketching out of ideas I had. Then with all the stress, my ugly self doubt demon roared into full swing. Especially when I received notes from a critique partner that was trying to rewrite my book in her own voice, and got exceptionally angry with me for refusing to do EVERYTHING she wanted. Needless to say, that didn’t go very well. ( I think I’ll do an entry on what I think a good CP is in the near future.) I also had a nasty bit of aggravation at the thought that my writing does not fit into ANY genre category specifically. I cannot begin to express how many people ragged me that it would never do any good because I was too far out of the box. It really depressed me to the point of considering never picking up a pen and paper to write a story again.
It was all just too much, and I tucked my memory stick in its case, shut down my computer, hid all of my notebooks, and stayed mostly away from anything to do with writing web sites. And then, I went on strike.
Break down of my strike:
Four weeks ago - I was going insane trying to write down all my muse’s notes on all the ideas she granted me. Not to mention, I was being a good CP and critiquing a fellow writer’s novel.
Three weeks ago - I refused to start anything new, and tucked my memory stick away.
Two weeks ago - I hid my notebooks, shut down my PC and started avoiding writing web sites.
One week ago - I was focusing on things entirely different from writing. I was working on my folk art. Trying to get some outlines done for paintings requested by a local business. I even had a yard sale and started making some herbal concoctions for health. I wasn’t even thinking about writing. I was reading - A LOT. How I managed to do that much reading without thinking like a writer I will never know, but I imagine it was partly because my muse was still in Tahiti. She didn’t even bring me back a postcard. ;-)
Today - I wrote again for the first time. My muse has come home and we are happily working on a new novel with the working title of Twisted Bets. Well, it’s kind of new. It’s one of the ones I was losing my already fragile mind over before my strike. This novel is letting my math nerd come out to play with my writing geek and it’s really becoming fun to write.
So, a month of rehab -
Four weeks of rehabilitation and recuperation for both my muse and my mind, that’s all it took for words to start flowing again. My self doubt dragon has gone back to sleep for now. I’ve situated my ‘I don’t care, I’m gonna write what I want to write’ hat neatly on my head. Then, I picked up my notebook again and a pen. The story is there. It’s waiting patiently for me. My muse has agreed to just take small breaks instead of lengthy vacations away - and this book – This novel, Twisted Bets will be finished. We’ve come to an agreement. ;-)
My advice to you, if you are reading this and feeling some of the same things as I was - Take A Break. It doesn’t have to be a month long. It can be however long it needs to be for you to feel better, for your muse to get in tune with you again. It’s okay to rest. I know that so many of the writing advice columns scream for you to write every day, but you DO NOT HAVE TO. You don’t. The story, the characters, the plots, they will all still be there when you get back. So, take that break if you need it.
Thanks for reading!
Happy writing or breaking depending on which you are doing. ;-)
*Hey, I've even managed to write a nearly 1200 word long blog post. ;-)
|Posted by heidinorrod on September 20, 2013 at 3:25 PM||comments (0)|
FRUSTRATIONS OF WRITING
By: Heidi R. Norrod
You work, slave, write and still accomplish nothing.
Or, is it something?
Making a decision you re-read.
Then you think, who off this would feed?
Terrible, trash, rip and crumple then pitch.
So you rest for a time to heal with a stitch.
Back to the computer, you go.
Try again for beautiful words to sow.
Write, type, squiggle and stop.
Nervous fingers push the cursor back to the top.
Rotten, awful and the delete is pressed.
But wait! This isn’t bad I confessed.
I think I’ll keep it! :-)
I can use it!
Hey, you know what?
It can be taught.
Writing isn’t such a bad job after all. ;-)
*And by the way, I never, ever, not even once profess to be a competent poet. I’m not. But my mind was whirling and this erupted. It isn’t even edited. ;-)
|Posted by heidinorrod on June 27, 2013 at 4:50 PM||comments (0)|
I have reasons behind my decision to put away my completed Historical Romance – good ones.
I guess the first is; I’m sick of it. The idea of finding an agent/editor and having to spend up to the next two years or more, editing it again – worries me. I do still have a full out with someone, and should it come to fruition – I will work on it with them. I also have a couple of queries out for it, but I’m really not feeling that great about them picking it up. The thing is that today I pulled it from a blog pitch party and have no regrets.
The second reason, I’m not sure it needs to be a first book that I put out. I mean it varies so significantly from the other things that I have completed or in the works that it really doesn’t match my unsteady platform I’ve tried to set up as a writer. Now, if I were to throw in some aliens (the space sort) or werewolves – Maybe. Maybe, it would match up better to my Science Fiction/ Fantasy platform that’s still quaking under foot. I’m not sure though.
The thing is I’m wallowing in self-doubt about it today. I know that. I fight with my self-doubt and my writing constantly. This time though, I’m heeding my inner voice, it really is rather nagging me today, and putting it away, back on the shelf so that maybe I can go back to it some other day, or maybe not. I’ve only actually ‘shelved’ completed books twice in my life.
The other ‘shelved’ book was a high fantasy, with a plot hole I couldn’t ever find. I should mention I worked on that particular novel for the best part of a five-year period – yeah, it was painful as heck to put it up. It (the plot hole that is to say) was there though sucking the life right out of my characters and their story. I think I actually went into mourning for my characters. I really do.
This one, this historical romance isn’t that bad. I just mainly feel like the time to query it, isn’t here. It isn’t right now. Maybe it will never come around, or maybe it will – but for now ---- the book, word file, pages of scribbles, etc…are going on the shelf. And, I’m going into a mourning phase. The book really is good and I’m sure that there would be people, readers, interested – but I can’t reach readers without an agent or a publisher (and I’m too wimpy to self-pub, and too poor to afford a freelance editor) so on the shelf it goes ----
Good luck to everyone out there running the rat race trying to find an agent/publisher or self-publishers, I bow to you.
Thanks for reading!
|Posted by heidinorrod on June 22, 2013 at 8:15 PM||comments (0)|
The following are opening paragraphs for my Middle Grade Time Travel Adventure entitled, The Quest for the Emerald Eye. This particular piece is the first in a planned series, assuming I can find someone to take on a series - though the query will read, it has series potential. ;-)
I hope you enjoy and happy reading!
THE QUEST FOR THE EMERALD EYE
By: Heidi R. Norrod
Chapter 1: ‘Boo’tacular Harvest Festival
Nala Peppers paced the length of the steps that led into William Jefferson Middle School. Chance was late again. She should have planned for it. Then again, she didn’t think he’d ever be late for the costume contest.
As she neared the edge of the top step again, she almost tripped on the too long hemline of the wedding dress. Inside the building, a bullhorn blared.
‘Attention! All the contestants for the costume judging contest please line up behind the purple curtains.’
Nala almost swore. She was going to miss it, if Chance didn’t get his always-late backside to the school auditorium pronto.
“Hey Nala! Thanks for waiting.”
Nala whirled around so fast her stiff hair wobbled. “Chance! You’re late. They’re already lining up. Come on!”
“You might give a boy time to catch his breath.” Chance wheezed. “I ran here all the way from the post office.”
“Why didn’t your parents bring you?”
Chance shot her a look that said, ‘don’t ask.’ And changed the subject, “What are you supposed to be anyway? You look like you stuck your finger in a light socket.”
“Well, I didn’t. I’m supposed to be the bride of Frankenstein. Can’t you tell?” Nala failed to stop her hand from slipping down along the side seam of her mother’s lacey wedding dress.
Chance scrutinized her. “The white streaks in your frizzy hair are a definite plus for the overall.”
Nala snorted. What did boys know about looking good anyway? “What are you supposed to be then, a hippie hobo?”
Her friend’s mouth fell open. “Absolutely not! Seriously? You can’t tell?” Nala shook her head. “I’m a disco zombie. See?”
|Posted by heidinorrod on June 22, 2013 at 8:10 PM||comments (0)|
The opening paragraphs of my Young Adult supernatural suspense romance, entitled FIRE BUG.
Hope you enjoy and thanks for reading!
By: Heidi R. Norrod
Chapter 1: Picture of Fire
Fire licks the dark underbelly of the purpling sky of the late October twilight. The searing red and orange tongues fully engulf Rochester family’s shed as they dance closer to the right side of the old Victorian house. Sirens wail as more fire engines screech into the gravel driveway to assist the first responding truck. Xenia Crowe coughs as she adjusts the lens of her Nikon. Hopefully she can get decent pictures of this three alarm fire and get them edited by Friday just time for the feature story slot in the Pugh-Hardeman High School’s newspaper.
The acrid air thickens as the newly arrived trucks start spraying the ravenous fire. A fireman charges toward the shed, axe in hand and just as he shatters the window, Xenia snaps a shot. Flames leap up at the new rush of oxygen, but a trio of firemen piggybacking the axe man hoses it into submission. Xenia shoots a series of shots as the firefighters quell the fire with sheets of white water.
Another team of fighters attack the fire from the shed’s far side, but the only thing Xenia can see through her camera lens is the twelve-foot white fan of water. So instead she turns toward the third team as they spray down the side of the Victorian to prevent the flames from jumping to its old, clapboard siding.
Xenia snaps a few pictures and turns back to the first team.