May 9, 2012

Would You Read It Wednesday - The 39th Pitch

Big news.

It's official.

(And you're probably going to want to sit down for this.)

After all this time I have finally become...

duh duh duh duh....

... a twit.

You heard right.  After all that kicking and screaming I joined the masses.

(For those of you who already thought I was a twit, well, I guess you can't argue with the evidence :))

I'd like to tell you my handle so you could all come join me in my confused wanderings, but I have no idea what it is.  I'll let you know as soon as I figure it out.*  I abandoned my twitterings in mid-twit late yesterday afternoon to bake birthday cake (the answer is chocolate - I have exceptionally keen hearing) and then help my birthday girl eat it :) so I have yet to actually make a nest or whatever y'all do in lieu of profiles over there :)

So that's my big news for the day.

When you've finished reeling from shock, grab a donut and have a gander at today's Would You Read It pitch.

By way of introduction to the pitcher...

Beware of the fiery haired writer who calls herself Rena J. Traxel. She lives in the middle of the nowhere in the province of Alberta, creating stories and poems for children. Death of Sleeping Beauty is book one in her fantasy series. Please visit her blog, On The Way To Somewhere, and read an excerpt from her book HERE.

Here is her pitch!

Working Title:  Death Of Sleeping Beauty
Age/Genre:  MG Fantasy
The Pitch:  Alivia Fair stumbles upon a seemingly harmless book that is full of gruesome fairy tales. Now the book is missing and strange things begin to happen. She is cursed by a man with a blue beard and finds herself trapped inside an enchanted castle, in which she comes face-to-face with the legendary, Sleeping Beauty. Too bad Alivia is destined to kill her, but with a little help Alivia might be able to stop the DEATH OF SLEEPING BEAUTY.

So what do you think?  Would You Read It?  YES, MAYBE or NO?

If your answer is YES, please feel free to tell us what you particularly liked and why the pitch piqued your interest.  If your answer is MAYBE or NO, please feel free to tell us what you think could be better in the spirit of helping Rena improve her pitch.  Helpful examples of possible alternate wordings are welcome.  (However, I must ask that comments be constructive and respectful.  I reserve the right not to publish comments that are mean because that is not what this is about.)

Please send YOUR pitches for the coming weeks!  For rules and where to submit, click on this link Would You Read It or on the Would You Read It tab in the bar above.  There are openings in August, so you have time to polish :) for a chance for it to be read by editor Erin Molta!

Rena is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!

* And although I don't know exactly where you'll find me on twitter, if you're interested in looking try Susanna Leonard Hill or SusannaLHill.  If I manage to get my birdhouse in order you might find me there later today :)  Anyone who wants to share twitter advice for the terminally witless, please feel free :)

Oh and P.S. if you haven't had a chance to vote for your favorite April pitch yet, please go HERE.  You have until the witching hour :)

Have a lovely day, everyone :)



Reactions:

89 comments:

  1. Woo hoo! I'm so excited you're on Twitter!
    Happy Birthday to your daughter and Rena i love your pitch, the story sounds fab. If you want to cut his down a bit I ould take out strange things begin to happen and just head straight for the strange things.

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  2. I feel very out of my depth, Catherine, but hopefully I'll figure it out #@whatever :) Thanks for the birthday wishes for H and for your comment for Rena :)

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  3. Alivia Fair stumbles upon a seemingly harmless book of gruesome fairy tales with strange consequences. Cursed by a man with a blue beard, Alvina finds herself trapped inside an enchanted castle, where she comes face-to-face with Sleeping Beauty, whom she is destined to kill. Is there a fairy tale ending to the DEATH OF SLEEPING BEAUTY?

    Rena, love the story, but feel the pitch news some tightening. I have offered an alternative, but don't like my question at the need. I think you just need to play around a bit with it. :)

    Welcome to Twitterville, Susanna, happy to follow another kid lit tweep!

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  4. Thanks for your helpful comment for Rena, Joanna. And one of my projects for today is to figure out how to write a tweet! :) #twitternewbie @dopey me :)

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  5. UHHH... Congrats? I will "follow" you on Twitter! :)
    Happy birthday to that good relative of yours! Ms. Traxel, I think your pitch is good. It gives the information that will make poeple want to read it :)
    Erik

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  6. Thank you Erik! I already followed you (I think... :)) And thank you for the birthday wishes - it was extremely kind of my daughter to have a birthday so we could all eat chocolate cake. Betty Bunny's got nothing on the people in my house :) This same daughter's first complete sentence at 16 months old was (and I am seriously not making this up!) "I want cake!"

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  7. Tweet, love, tweet. lol!!! I'm on Twitter with the handle neostateofmind but I wouldn't ask me for advice as I'm not all that knowledgeable lol!!

    As for the pitch, I would say Yes. Mainly because I am a fantasy-head. Love fantasy. Adore it. Love going to new places and escaping away to some new adventure. I do wonder if there is a way to make the pitch a bit more enticing...something like (Age of MC) Alivia Fair finds life is anything but fair. After she comes across, then loses, a book of gruesome fairy tales, she's cursed by a mysterious blue bearded man. Now trapped in an enchanted castle, Alivia learns she's destined to kill Sleeping Beauty. Intent on changing her fate, Alivia accepts the help of (a rogue mini-prince, tiny but mighty mouse, scary but friendly dragon...just making this up lol!) to stop the DEATH OF SLEEPING BEAUTY.

    Not sure if that actually makes it more enticing but it provides for a way to get a little more information in and to make things a tad less vague.

    Good luck, Rena, with your pitch :-)

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  8. Yay for your daughter! (I love it when those kids think so much of us that they let us cook and bake for them.) I tell 'em, "Of course I'm gonna eat this. I baked it didn't I??" I am kind enough to offer them one piece though. *wink*

    I CANNOT find you twitting about. I've even tried Susie Q. *sigh* (This is the first time someone told me they were on Twitter and they don't know their handle.)

    Rena, your story sounds wonderful. But I think the pitch needs to be shorter. Cut some words. (Agents love to see white paper on the queries and they love a strong pitch.) Just an idea here, the title is called The Death of Sleeping Beauty, right? I've heard (from a famous agent)that the MC is the only person who should be in the query. I'd take mention of sleeping beauty out. Talk about the strange stuff that happens, (only the strangest stuff) but take out the part where you say strange stuff begins to happen. Good luck with your book. *waving*

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  9. Thanks for your sweetly encouragement, Angela :) and thanks for your helpful comment for Rena!

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  10. Aren't you supposed to be able to search for my name and find me? I just found you and followed you... at least I think I did... Please tell me if it shows up and if you can find me back, or if I'm some kind of invisible entity :) And thanks for your comments for Rena :)

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  11. Penny KlostermannMay 9, 2012 at 10:00 AM

    Happy birthday to your daughter and happy cake to you!!!

    I love cake. My husband and I are known to buy birthday cakes on a regular basis. They love us at the bakery because we don't care what they have on the cake...Go Eagles!...Happy 25th Anniversary!...It's a Boy!...anything will do, but always with a little extra icing!

    Rena, Yes, I would read you book based on your pitch! I agree it needs tightening. Angela has great suggestions!

    Twitter, huh? I'm on there @pklostermann. I am not an active tweeter! All this social media is mind boggling! In fact, now that I've said that...we should have a new social media outlet called boggling...and we could boggle each other and stay even more confused! (I am soooo laughing at my own joke. I know...I'm wierd!)

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  12. thefeatherednestMay 9, 2012 at 10:03 AM

    I have yet to enter the world of Faces and Twitters....no rush, I spend way too much time on the computer as it is.
    Happy B'day to your daughter...although....you really don't need an excuse to have cake do you?
    The pitch is perhaps a tad long but I would definitely read the book.

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  13. You are so funny, Penny! :) I love your boggling idea - that's how I feel all the time, but especially with twitter. I may have just sent my very first tweet - who can tell? :) Thanks for your comment for Rena!

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  14. I am trying not to be completely left behind technologically speaking :) And no, I never need an excuse for cake! :) THanks for you comment for Rena.

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  15. First of all, here's the link to your twitter, and you are indeed @SusannaLHill https://twitter.com/#!/SusannaLHill

    Congrats on being dragged into the Twitterverse! You can find good stuff about using Twitter to its full advantage (if not the totally technical stuff) at My Name is Not Bob http://robertleebrewer.blogspot.ca/ (As for the technical stuff, it's magic, just like everything else in the cyber universe.)

    Now for the pitch. Yes, I'd read it. It sounds totally cool. I like the others' suggestions for tightening the pitch somewhat. My only comment was going to be that Rena doesn't need a comma between "legendary" and "Sleeping Beauty" because I'm fussy like that.

    Happy birthday to your daughter, and thanks for the whiff of the wonderful aroma of chocolate cake!

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  16. Thank you, Beth!!! And in case you're wondering, I have Not Bob's page open on my desktop like a bible! :) So far I think I have managed to make one tweet and one retweet. I'm exhausted. Is it naptime yet? Thanks for the b-day wishes - I'm sending you a virtual piece of chocolate cake which cannot harm your sugar levels :) And thanks for you comment for Rena.

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  17. Yay you! I've followed you on Twitter. You can do it! And thanks for the cake. DEEEEEElicious.

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  18. You're welcome :)














    Beth Stilborn (unregistered) wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    Yay you! I've followed you on Twitter. You can do it! And thanks for the cake. DEEEEEElicious.

    User's profile
    Link to comment

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  19. Rachel SchieffelbeinMay 9, 2012 at 10:57 AM

    I'm a maybe. I like fairy tale retellings and this does sound interesting, but I agree that the pitch could be tightened up. Good luck! :)

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  20. This story sounds intriguing, so I'd definitely want to read it. I agree with suggestions for tightening the pitch, but the content captured my attention.

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  21. Thanks so much for your comments, Andrea!

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  22. The title grabs my attention, but the pitch doesn't really reveal the conflict well enough for me to know if this is something I want to read.

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  23. Thanks Randy! And thanks for the twitter follow :)

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  24. I like the title, too but is this a twisted fairy tale or just a story about Sleeping Beauty? Is this about the whole book of fairy tales or just one story? do you see how it makes for more questions?

    the pitch is interesting in that I would want to read more but it seems a little confusing and I need to know more about the conflict. Is it within Alivia because she doesn't want to kill the beauty or with the fact a whole book is missing?

    OK, I'll stop. Wish I knew how to rewrite this like some others but the premise sounds good. Just read the other comments and the one about only giving out the mc info is valid. go for it.

    I'll go ahead and follow you now,Susanna. Welcome to the world of magic and suspense because none of us know what we're doing on twitter except maybe Kristen Lamb.

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  25. Thanks, Clar! I followed you back. And I guess I better find Kristen Lamb! :)

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  26. Ha! You've become a twit! I love it. Hang on... I'm off to see if I can hunt you down there....

    And... I came up with nothing.

    Oh, wait! Beth to the rescue! Gotcha. And welcome! I don't have a clue on twitter, either. And I'm well beyond having a good excuse for it.

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  27. Absolutely, Rena...I would definitely read it. Sounds fascinating! Well written, the pitch entices me to want more. Great job! The rewriting of well-known fairy tales intrigues me...
    And Susanna...welcome to the tweeting world!

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  28. Thanks. It's loosely based off Sleeping Beauty. I know that is something I'm going to have to include in my pitch when I send it to the publishers.

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  29. Thanks for the feedback. It's loosely based off Sleeping Beauty. It goes beyond the tale of Sleeping Beauty. I will have to make sure to include that when I pitch my story.

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  30. Thanks. I see that a lot of people think this story is a retelling and it's not. I'm going to have to make sure I make that clear in my pitch.

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  31. Thanks Beth.

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  32. Cool. Thanks. I love the line Alivia Fair finds life is anything but fair. That line made me think of what is at stake for her and I don't think I really make that clear.

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  33. Thank you, Jarm! I will try to find you, but since I'm a helpless baby at this, you'd better look for me too :)

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  34. I figured I'd better jump on the bandwagon, otherwise I'd just be sliding down the slippery slope into old age :)

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  35. Congrats on becoming a twit! I have yet to enter the twitter-verse. Been holding back, was afraid I might get lost. Happy Birthday to your daughter. I could use some chocolate cake. :-)

    As for a pitch I am a MAYBE. First I am don't read too much MG fantasy. Second, your pitch was bit confusing. The lines that hooked me were the first and last. The stuff in-between was a bit confusing and not as enticing. I think if you can tighten it and make it a bit snappier that will help to lure and keep the reader's attention. I do like some of the re-writes others have already posted. Good Luck!

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  36. I would totally read it! I'm a sucker for MG and for fairy tale retellings, so this pitch has my vote.

    Congrats on getting onto Twitter :) Let us know your handle at some point!

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  37. Thanks Jess! As far as I know, it's @SusannaLHill

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  38. Thanks, Darshana! I'm feeling very trepidatious, but I'm taking a course in social media and she said Twitter was crucial. We'll see... I may expire from social media overload :) You are welcome to a slice of chocolate cake - come on over :)

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  39. Thanks for the feedback.

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  40. Thanks! That is what I like to hear.

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  41. Not only would I read it, but I have read it, and Rena's book is fantastic! I keep nagging her for book 2. As for Twitter, I try, but I am terrible add it. Nevertheless, I am going to find you Susanna!

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  42. Stina LindenblattMay 9, 2012 at 6:24 PM

    Yes. Yes. Yes!!!!! I would read it. And not just because we both live in Alberta. I don't live in the middle of nowhere, though. I'm in a major city.

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  43. I am hooked, but the second sentence confused me.
    I'm soooooo happy you are on Twitter. You'll get the hang of it. I love Twitter for a personal newsfeed (follow people you want to read), find out things happening in my local community (traffic congestion, police, news) and for keeping up with my bloggy friends.

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  44. I love retellings of fairy tales. Yes, I would read it. But, I got confused about Alivia being destined to kill Sleeping Beauty, and had to read it again. May be just me.

    Oh Susanna, you're a Twit for sure. I went in kicking and screaming, but am getting the hang of it. I don't use it regularly though. Sometimes I get messages that come to my e-mail, which is great, then I'll go on. Too many other things to do.

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  45. Thanks for the feedback. It seems that I know the story to well so it helps to know that my pitch isn't quite clear.

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  46. Thanks for letting me know!

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  47. Haha. Thanks.

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  48. You are the best! I'm working on my submission package this week then I will turn my attention back to finishing novel 2!

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  49. Thank you, Kirsten :) I am brand new, so we'll see!

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  50. Thanks for your enthusiastic response Stina :)

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  51. I WANT to love Twitter, it just doesn't make sense to me yet. Maybe you can give me a twitorial :)

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  52. Oh I'm off to Twitter to find you!! :) And I like Rena's pitch--I love all things fairy tale!

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  53. It's definitely going to take me a little time to get the hang of it! But practice makes perfect, right? :)

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  54. You're so nice, Coleen, thank you! :) I'm afraid it's going to take mea little time to get the hang of it!

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  55. Thanks Susanna for letting me share my pitch. Twitter is fun! I'm sure you will be a pro in no time.

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  56. You're entirely welcome, Rena! I hope it's been helpful! And I wish I had your certainty about twitter, but I'm hoping I'll get the hang of it in a little bit!

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  57. I would definitely read this book. I'm intrigued! :) I do think it could use a little rewording though. The second line seems a little misplaced.

    "Now the book is missing and strange things begin to happen."

    Is it necessary? Though I imagine it's an important part of the story, it leaves me with questions... If the book is missing what relevance does it have to the story? Should I even care about the book? And "strange things being to happen" is rather telling without telling anything.

    I'm wondering if you could find a way to bridge the 1st and 3rd sentence while eliminating the 2nd.

    Even so, I really like the premises.

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  58. Thank you so much for weighing in Reena - your comments are always so helpful!

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  59. Makes me want to read MG.

    Congrats on joining Twitter. I'm following you now. :-)

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  60. I'm a total fan of fairy and folk tale spins, etc. so, yes, I would read it. But I will say that I think the pitch needs a bit of work as it reads a bit awkward in places. Good luck, though!

    And Susanna, I'll find you on Twitter soon...

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  61. Thanks. The book is important so perhaps I should say why the book is important. Thanks again.

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  62. Thanks, you are sweet.

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  63. Oh, look at you, all brave and trying new things. Good for you! (I'm not there yet.)

    I'm not big on fairy tale twists. But ever since I started watching Once Upon a Time, I'm a little more interested than before.

    I was confused by the last sentence of the pitch where we're told that Alivia is both destined to kill Sleeping Beauty but also may be the one to stop the death of sleeping beauty.

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  64. Thanks Miranda.

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  65. Thanks, I will do.

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  66. Thanks! I'm going to have to re-word my pitch just a bit. I haven't seen Once Upon A Time yet, but it does look like a fun show.

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  67. I'm working on my submission package this week so everyone's comments have been helpful. Did you create categories for people you follow on Twitter? It's easier to read tweets when you have people grouped into categories such as one for writers and another for family etc.

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  68. I haven't gotten that far - I didn't know you could!














    Rena J. Traxel (unregistered) wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    I'm working on my submission package this week so everyone's comments have been helpful. Did you create categories for people you follow on Twitter? It's easier to read tweets when you have people grouped into categories such as one for writers and another for family etc.

    Link to comment

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  69. Oh, Susanna, you do make me laugh. I would absolutely read that book. Loved the pitch, loved the concept, can't wait to see it published. And I look forward to eventually maybe someday connecting with you on Twitter.

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  70. Thanks Vicki, I hope to start sending my novel out by the end of the month! I'm now following you on Twitter.

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  71. When you add someone click on the arrow beside the follow button and you will see a option to add/remove the person from a list. Click on it and it will allow you to create a list. I had been on Twitter for almost year when I learned about lists and using lists has made Twitter a bit more manageable.

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  72. I'll try it, thanks!














    Rena J. Traxel (unregistered) wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    When you add someone click on the arrow beside the follow button and you will see a option to add/remove the person from a list. Click on it and it will allow you to create a list. I had been on Twitter for almost year when I learned about lists and using lists has made Twitter a bit more manageable.

    Link to comment

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  73. Glad you enjoyed it :) And I hope I can find you on twitter!

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  74. Definitely! Rena - You had me with 'in which she comes face-to-face with the legendary, Sleeping Beauty'. Could TOTALLY see it, and her own shock! Don't like the word seemingly, would leave it out altogether; change 'full of' to bursting or chock-full; Say "The book disappears' for more mystery; 'cursed by a blue-bearded man she finds herself trapped in an enchanted castle'; 'With a little help Alivia might be able to stop her own murderous hands and the DEATH OF SLEEPING BEAUTY.'

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  75. Thanks for your helpful comment for Rena, Julie!

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  76. Thanks Julie.

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  77. I have yet to enter the world of Faces and Twitters....no rush, I spend way too much time on the computer as it is.
    Happy B'day to your daughter...although....you really don't need an excuse to have cake do you?
    The pitch is perhaps a tad long but I would definitely read the book.

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