20. In /The Soul Collector/, a 65,000 word midgrade fantasy book, a peasant girl is commanded by the cheeky self-absorbed gods of her land to reunite a group of souls and bodies that have been separated. While her simple task provides the god’s with the entertainment they seek, it makes her a target for the person who stole the souls in the first place. It turns out the thief plans to use the souls to become a god, but in doing so, the soul’s bodies will die. The girl must find a way to stop the thief from destroying the bodies and keep him from stealing souls in the future.I'm confused by the levity of the "cheeky" gods' "entertainment" and the very fraught nature of people whose souls have been stolen. I'm not sure this manuscript knows what it is.
21. David’s teacher is a ruthless, uncaring monster, and he will gladly share the stories of how Mrs. Murkel earned her nickname, the “Murkel Monster.” On the other hand, Mrs. Murkel would describe David as an irresponsible fourth grader with a penchant for playing with paper and making up excuses. It would seem that David and Mrs. Murkel understand each other perfectly. However, in an unexpected (and admittedly unbelievable) turn of events, a special girl named Lucy helps the two see each other in a new light.The setting and action of this story seem to target elementary schoolers, but the voice of this pitch is very adult. Remember that I'm going to take as many clues from your pitch as I can--and this one is saying "I can't write for my age group."
22. There comes a moment in every teenager’s life when he or she wonders what it might be like to be the opposite sex. Most geeks fantasize about popularity. Every popular kid wants to stay on top. Alternating Earthling, alien points-of-view shed light on the things we tolerate about ourselves and those we must accept in others.What? Is this about gender? Popularity? Aliens? What happens in this story?
23. After pressing on mysterious bumps that have appeared suddenly on their backs, fourth-grader Kara Kennelly and her cousin Avery discover they can transform into amazing creatures that are half-girl, half-bird. They soon learn the joy of flying comes with extreme danger in the form of “Scare Crow,” a giant winged monster determined to do battle with the “Gird Birls.” Kara and Avery must also battle their own moms, who are secret Gird Birls themselves and dead-set against their daughters flying. But if Kara and Avery don’t fly, who will rid the skies of Scare Crow?Are you saying they have wing buttons, or magical zits? What's with the "gird birls"? That name is not striking me as high in cool factor. And their moms? I'm feeling confused about what this story is about at heart.
24. Teachers HATE show and tell day; student teachers HATE show and tell day; mommies HATE show and tell day; but kids LOVE show and tell day. I wrote a great book explaining show and tell. "Sydney Brooks Loves Show and Tell." The reviewers (aka kids) of room 120 loved it, perhaps you will, too.This was for worst pitch, right? You remembered what I said about what editors think of children's opinions?
If this was sincerely meant, take that last sentence out, and tell me what happens in this manuscript.
25. Minerva Fletcher, Minnie if you please, is probably not a witch. She's just a skinny seventh grader who happens to have a bumbling magician for a father, a mother who disappeared in an unfortunate magic trick gone wrong, and a granny who is one of the original Salem witches and a card-carrying member of the Witches' Relocation Program. Teased mercilessly in her new school by the Queen Bee, Skinny Minnie forges a friendship with Krystal, the candy-eating ghost who haunts the hallways. Trouble brews, along with wasted wishes and kooky spells, when Minnie gets a magical moonstone ring and a junior witch handbook for her thirteenth birthday.There's just something so familiar about this story line. Maybe I'm just over witches for a while.
26. I have been a rugby player, a Canadian infantry soldier, a wilderness survival instructor, have rode bucking horses in the rodeo, married an Eskimo-Cowboy, and am the kick ass (but not peppy) mother of three children under five. I am postnatal and a little more than premenopausal. So, I am not only to be feared if rejected, but also have a plethora of phenomenal stories. If you want to read about an inspiring street child I once knew in South Africa, an Outlaw bush pilot from Northern BC, or a rodeo cowgirl and her bovine sidekick with irritable bowel syndrome (to name a few), I'm your gal.Is this a pitch for a manuscript? It sounds like a pitch for you, which I'm not buying. All the experiences in the world do not necessarily make you a good writer; all the writing in the world does not necessarily mean you have a story that works.
27. Natalie dreams of building little tiny fences along the cliffs of the Arctic to SAVE THE LEMMINGS! from their mass suicides. How will she ever raise awareness for the cause? When Natalie invents the Texty-Talky she becomes an overnight success but the media quickly turns on her and muddies her reputation. Will Natalie be able to rise above the media muck and SAVE THE LEMMINGS!a. What's a texty-talk? b. Who cares about lemmings? c. Is this supposed to be funny, or are you serious about this?
27. On a lonely night, a fox tricks a little kid into following him into the woods. Disguised as a man named Mr. Albatross, he leads the boy far away from home to devour him. But soon Mr. Albatross discovers he's become his role, forgetting all of his fox instincts. Can he and the boy find their way out of the woods?What? Is this some kind of allegory? Ok, I get it--the fox is the author, Mr. Albatross is the story's narrator, and the boy is the reader. By the end, everyone's lost.
28. For Frankie Kinnessey, it’s hard enough being the new kid going into eighth grade, let alone trying to fit in while hiding the fact that her mother’s a witch. When her secret is uncovered, the entire school starts buzzing, but instead of being relegated to the loser table in the lunchroom, Frankie becomes the most popular kid there. Her new found fame propels Frankie to embellish her non-existent powers and alienate the two girls who liked her before she became the resident witch extraordinaire. If she can come clean with her classmates, she just might be able to make it through middle school relatively unscathed... even if she is just a mere mortal.Again, this is feeling a tad familiar. There are just so many witch stories out there...
29. Grandma loves her snuggly-wuggly grandbaby so much, she'd do anything for him. She'd bake him cookies and buy him wookies. She'd smother him with kisses and grant all his wishes. Illustrated with cutting-edge-computer graphix (see attached), Gramma's Snuggly-Wuggles is my 500-word, rhymed, sure- to- be- adored- by- anyone- who- has- ever- had- a- grandma picture book manuscript!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (art in email)Heehee. I got something just like this recently, but it also included a photo of a cat throwing up.
30. Ben was a happy kid leading a normal life - until, somehow, his voice destroyed a museum. Now he's practically a prisoner at Dr. Miller's academy for super-heroes. The only other kids his age are Zach, Dr. Miller's super-intelligent lackey, and Moira, whose screams echo through the hallways as she undergoes "reeducation." In Yeller, my 26,500 word upper-middle grade novel, Ben must navigate the perils of Dr. Miller's academy to preserve his sense of self, rescue the girl, and return to his old life.This doesn't sound at all bad, but I need to know more about these perils. And how did his voice destroy a museum? More info.
31. (YA Contemporary Fantasy Novel) Fifteen-year-old Belle is perfectly normal and perfectly bored with her normal life—until she meets her new English teacher, a witch named Ms. Wendt. Ms. Wendt's classroom is located behind a blue door that erases her students' memories of magic and of Ms. Wendt when they leave. As Belle and her friends Robert and Esperanza try to find ways to thwart the door and remember their magical teacher outside of class, they discover that Ms. Wendt is a prisoner of her own classroom, trapped behind the blue door that ensures no one will remember her or help her escape. Belle's new science teacher hints that there may be a way save Ms. Wendt, but the alchemy he teaches them makes them wonder if he's there to save Ms. Wendt or use his magic for his own purposes... either way, the first step for Belle to save her teacher is to remember her.I'm just not feeling the conflict. What's the personal investment for your MC?
32. George's peaceful summer takes a dramatic turn when he realizes Gloria Stinkmeyer has returned on the same day he learns aliens are about to invade earth. Coincidence? George doesn't think so. George Jones and the Gooey Sneeze that Saved the World is a 900 word picture book with a comic book format that engages kids using gross-out humor.Are you implying that Gloria Stinkmeyer is an alien? Why? How does the gooey sneeze save the world?
33. Fifteen year old, half-Italian, half-Vampire Tommy gets sent to a new school to learn about his Vampire heritage. He attracts a lot of attention: from the biggest bully, to the prettiest girl, to a young boy with an amazingly short attention span, to a gang that wants a taste of Tommy’s human blood. What he does learn is that there are Vampire Rules and his parents may be breaking every single one of them.This sounded funny and maybe interesting up until the last sentence, when it suddenly sounded serious. What rules? And I hope he learns something about himself, rather than just his parents... they're not the focus of the book, right?
34. Picture book 4-6 years of age /Peter Fly is a messy little fly who never cleans his room. It isn’t until his favorite toy is broken that he decides it’s time to clean PETER’S MESSY ROOM.What differentiates this story from a Berenstain Bears story? What diffuses the lesson that this seems to be headed toward?