A PITCH A DAY WILL BRING SUCCESS YOUR WAY
Leery of queries? Perturbed over pitches? Learning to write the perfect pitch is like riding a bike or playing an instrument. It gets better with practice -- and thankfully nothing you can't manage with a little discipline.
Here's an exercise to strengthen your pitch potential.
Choose a favorite book from your chosen genre. Consider its unique aspects and write a 50-word query lead.
EXAMPLE: When Alice falls down a rabbit hole, an adventure begins. Soon, she is chasing a white rabbit, taking tea with rodents, changing size and trying to keep her head from a volatile queen. Can Alice escape the madness and find her way home?
If you feel you need to study up before undertaking this task, get a pile of picture books and read the jacket flaps!
Write five pitches as practice.
Now, take a look at your own body of work and write five pitches. If you only have a few projects, challenge yourself to write the pitches in an entirely different style. See which one works best. An as always you should be rereading, revising and re-visioning your pitches to make them as vivid and tight as possible.
BONUS *WORD WEAVING* CHALLENGE:
Write a picture book story using as many words from this list as possible. Give yourself bonus points for using all of them. If this practice becomes a project, feel free to discard any words that don't serve your story. They will have done their job by inspiring something new!
Word weaving exercise inspired by words from SANTA'S KWANZA, written by Garen Eileen Thomas and illustrated by Guy Francis (Jump at the Sun/Hyperion, 2004 and I'M DONE, written by Gretchen Brandenburg McLellan and illustrated by Catherine Lazar Odell. Please check out these books!
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Lynne Marie is the author of Hedgehog Goes to Kindergarten - illustrated by Anne Kennedy (Scholastic, 2011), Hedgehog's 100th Day of School – illustrated by Lorna Hussey (Scholastic, January 2017), The Star of the Christmas Play -- illustrated by Lorna Hussey (Beaming Books, 2018), Moldilocks and the 3 Scares -- illustrated by David Rodriguez Lorenzo (Sterling, pending) and Let's Eat! Mealtimes Around the World -- illustrated by Parwinder Singh (Beaming Books, 2019). You can learn more about her at www.LiterallyLynneMarie.com
To order the Star in the Christmas Play, click the title.