It’s a strange, surreal year. But here we are, at the turn of fall, and the annual arrival of Pitch Wars. I’m truly excited to have the opportunity to be on the other side of this blog post and I hope as I gleaned some insight during the submission period from the many blogs I read before, this would be of some use to you as a potential 2020 mentee.
The biggest advice I have for anyone pursuing Pitch Wars is to prepare yourself mentally and physically.
For those of you interested in numbers, 2019 was my fourth time entering PW, second time entering with the same manuscript. Yep. In 2018, I entered my ms and got my first full requests. And I didn’t get it. Instead of moving onto a new project, I found that I had new ideas for revisions, so I overhauled the ms. A brand new draft and submitted it in 2019. I got in.
My mentor, a brilliant writer whom I have looked up to forever, got down to business fast. And the revision notes she handed me basically ripped into the heart of the story. I knew from the first that I needed to re-write this book from the ground up again.
That wasn’t easy. I had to work within deadlines, some for weeks, some within days. And that required a lot of time management, and still I managed to miss my deadlines by a day or two every time.
This is why I insist on anyone taking PW seriously to prepare yourself for some hard work. Your ms may not require the same intense work as mine did, but it might. This should absolutely not mean that you sacrifice your mental or physical health. Especially during times as uncertain as this. A lot of us are under immense pressure right now, make sure that your priorities are focused, that you prepare a time table that you can follow in a healthy manner, and give yourself a break every now and then.
Take care of yourself, and only then will your best writing shine.
And remember, even if you don’t get in this time, you will have the opportunity to continue working alongside many writers during this period. Not just PW, there will also be Nanowrimo in November (apart from the election of doom but that’s another story and requires a whole lot of alcohol to get into). So, as a writer, this period is going to be creatively busy for many of us. Don’t ever lose heart, publishing is a long game. No matter how much you hear this, it’s true every single time.
Thank you for reading this, and good luck! If you have any questions, please always feel free to DM me on Twitter.