I cannot begin to tell you how awesome this is.
But let me rewind a bit. The manuscript I submitted has been on my mind for months. I'd think about it on and off, then push it to the back of my mind. In fact, I found some notes for it from over a year ago. Its spent A LOT of time in the think tank. Many characters and things have changed, though not the basic idea.
When the school year ended, I decided that one of my goals was to get really, REALLY serious about this whole writing thing. Now, I'm not saying I wasn't serious before - but I wasn't doing everything I could. Now I am. I scheduled "office" hours for myself and required myself to sit in front of my computer and write a specific amount each day.
Somewhere in there, Rory started talking, and he wouldn't shut up. And for about four weeks, I wrote and edited like a fiend. I handed the story out to a few trusted friends, who I knew wouldn't mince words. One of the harder sells came back and told me, "It was awesome. Where's the next one?"
Back in July, I realized PitchWars was coming, and that was the goal I set. I entered last year, but I hadn't gotten anywhere. But I got some good feedback, and I found some awesome people online. So after a couple more edits, I went ahead and agonized for three days over my mentors. They would all have been awesome choices.
September 1 rolled around, and I tuned into the live chat like all the other hopefuls, watching with the secret hope that the surprise would be an early reveal. It was getting late, I'd had a crappy week, and I really wasn't expecting to see my name at all. Seriously.
So when the surprise was revealed and I opened that tab, I did a double take. And a triple take, and then I might have squeed a lot and made my husband come over to look at the laptop. There may even have been tears once it really sank in. Then I called everyone I knew. Most of whom were happy for me, but had no idea why I should be excited.
If you're also wondering, here's why Pitch Wars is so awesome: You take a polished manuscript that you're ready to query, as well as the query letter and you submit it to the mentors you've chosen. If you're picked, you then work for two months with your mentor to shine and sparkle and make your manuscript the best thing it could ever be. Then, at the end of the mentoring, there is an agent round with a bunch of AWESOME agents, who can look over your pitch and sample and request more (or not).
Regardless of whether or not anything comes from that agent round, at the end, you have a manuscript that is the best it can possibly be. You query, you see what happens.
Its an amazing opportunity. And even if you don't get in, its an awesome community. I have found people to chat with on Twitter, to cheer for and follow. It really is a supportive and fabulous writing community.
So for the next two months, I'll be editing and whipping my baby into shape. And when its all over, I will know that this manuscript is going to have the best chance I can give it.
I'll be blogging about my editing and being a mentee, if you're interested. So stay tuned!