June 12, 2013

Would You Read It Wednesday #92 - The Cat Who Lived In The Flowerpot (PB) AND The May Pitch Pick!

Happy Wednesday, Everyone!  I hope you are all having an excellent week so far!

We've got two things on the agenda today - the May Pitch Pick and today's Would You Read It.  Luckily, we've got something delicious and chocolatey to fortify us :)

Yum!  Chocolate Cream Pie! :)
Please help yourselves to as many slices as necessary to fuel you for the morning :)

Now then.  Let's start with the May Pitch Pick.  We had 5 terrific pitches.  The pitchers all took your generous counsel to heart and have revised their original offerings.  Please read the pitches below and then vote for the one you feel deserves a read by editor Erin Molta!

#1. Jesse
Daydreamer (YA/Sci-Fi)
Dr. Edwin Wallace has found the answer to one of science's great mysteries - deja vu, revealing a clue to his visions. But as they fade with age, could the exceptionally gifted 17 year old Jackson Cooper unlock the answer to harness their premonitions for the good of mankind? When Jackson is taken by a secret military agency, he will need to rely on the bond of new found friends to help him fight his way back home.

#2. James
Story Bored (MG)

The narrator has a problem. Too many of the stories on his bookshelf have changed. Humpty Dumpty is not on his wall but in a recipe for chocolate cake. The old lady who lives in a shoe is now the old lady who lives in nice cozy house with a big screen TV. And the tortoise is missing. The hare has nobody to race against. But those problems are not as important as the narrator’s major concern. Where is the 8 year old writer who made all those story changes?
The narrator sighed ‘why are books so complicated?’


#3. Rita
Nobody Loves Roberto A. Tailbottom (PB)

Robbie Tailbottom is concerned only about his next meal, but when he finds out that other animals are in trouble this rat becomes a hero.

#4. Kimberly
Bonjour, Remy! (PB)
Six-year-old Remy loves adventure—just so long as it never leaves the garden. So she hesitates when her parents surprise her with a trip to Paris. How can she leave all of her favorite things? It might take some convincing, but if Remy will leap into the new and wonderful Parisian culture she might just learn that beauty and her favorite things can be found in many places. They just might have different names.

#5. Sian
The Word Thief (PB)
Benedict the Vampire likes nothing more than snacking on a tasty noun.  He’s on a rampage, gobbling up ‘words, whispers, songs and shouts’ until the city is silent.  Who can stop him?  Something furry lurking in the sewer could have the answer….

Please cast your vote for your favorite pitch by Saturday June 15 at 11:59PM EDT.


Now, onto today's pitch which comes to us from the lovely Heather who says, "When people used to ask me what I wanted to be when I grew up I answered, "A children's book author and illustrator."  As I grew older I thought that was too unrealistic so I majored in sociology and started working for a small business.  However, I recently decided to chase that childhood dream, and started writing!  Hopefully this dream comes true!"  


(And I just have to sneak in with my 2 cents and say I think she's well on her way :)  She wrote a terrific entry for the In Just Spring Contest, and if you go to her blog you'll get to see some of her fabulous art... including a picture of the cat who lived in the flowerpot :))

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: The Cat Who Lived In The Flowerpot
Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 3-7)
The Pitch: Tristan the cat lives in the flowerpot between apartments 7 and 8.  He loves his human neighbors and they love him.  There was just one problem.  NO PETS ALLOWED!  One day the strict landlady swings by for a surprise visit and discovers Tristan.  He finds himself in danger of losing his flowerpot home and the neighbors he loves.

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 Heather 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 July so we're about ready for some new pitches!  Send yours for your chance to be read by editor Erin Molta!

Heather is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to seeing who wins the May Pitch Pick.  I have a feeling it's going to be another tight race!

Have a wonderful day, everyone! :)

Reactions:

80 comments:

  1. Yummy pie, Susanna.

    The pitch sounds so sweet, Heather! Yes, I would read it. The only thing I would change is the tense in the third sentence. It should read, "There's (or There is) just one problem" to be consistent with the other tenses in your pitch. Good luck!

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  2. I would read it. I immediately wanted someone to save the cat the moment the landlady showed on the scene.

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  3. Thank you for pointing that out for me Pam. I will make sure to change it. Thanks for for the feedback!

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  4. Thank you Angela!

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  5. aliciafinnnoack.comJune 12, 2013 at 10:07 AM

    I would totally read it. That landlady better fall in love with him and let him stay -- look at that, it seems I had an emotional reaction, so that's good (right?). I really love the idea of a flowerpot home.

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  6. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikJune 12, 2013 at 10:10 AM

    Cute! I love the idea for the book! I would DEFINITELY read this!

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  7. Rachel SchieffelbeinJune 12, 2013 at 10:12 AM

    I'd read it, it sounds cute. :)

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  8. Oooh, you read my mind again, Susanna! I have a pie crust in the fridge that I was wondering what to do with (hubby was going to make quiche but changed his mind), and now I know I'll make chocolate cream pie with it!


    I sure would read Heather's story. I think it sounds adorable! My only nit-pick is that from the rest of the pitch, it sounds like a world where cat and humans co-exist as equals...that is, Tristan is neighbors with the humans...but the line about pets throws things off kilter since it was obvious from the start that Tristan was nobody's pet.


    I don't know if the word "squatter" would be too big a word for little ones, but maybe the landlady's stance is that Tristan can't be there because he's not paying rent rather than that he's a pet? Hmmm.


    Love it otherwise!

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  9. Sus, SAVE THE CAT! (Oh yeah. That's another book.) *wink*

    Heather, I would definitely read this. How adorable. A story all kids can relate to. I agree with Pam, but the pitch is totally sound otherwise. Super job!

    Holds humongous plate out with giant sized fork. *nom* *nom*

    I voted. Do I get a sticker? ;-)

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  10. yes! I love the whole idea and the potential homelessness

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  11. Yes . . . here's hoping that Tristan is the EXCEPTION to the NO PETS ALLOWED rule.


    And thanks for the pie. YUMMY.

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  12. What a great pitch and story. There's an obvious problem and I'm intrigued how it pans out. So cute too in a flower pot, well done Heather.
    Thanks for the pie!

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  13. Mad - my first comment evaporated! Yes, I would, but I'd tighten a bit:

    Tristan the cat lives in the flowerpot between apartments 7 and 8. He loves his neighbors and they love him. There was just one problem. NO PETS ALLOWED! When the strict landlady swings by for a surprise visit he finds himself in danger of losing his home and the neighbors he loves.

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  14. I would read (and eat pie!) Maybe just tighten the last two lines and combine?

    One day the strict landlady swings by for a surprise visit and Tristan finds himself in danger of losing his flowerpot home and
    the neighbors he loves.

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  15. delores @ thefeatherednestJune 12, 2013 at 12:54 PM

    Strictly speaking, if Tristan has his own home in a flowerpot he's not a pet....yes, I would read it because I want to know what happens to Tristan.

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  16. Glad you like the pie, Pam, and thanks for your comments for Heather! :)



























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  17. There's something very engaging about the idea of a cat living in a flowerpot, isn't there? And you do want him to be able to stay :)

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  18. Thanks so much for your feedback, Alicia! I confess I felt the same way :) I'm sure Heather will be glad you like it!

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  19. Thanks for chiming in, Sue! I'm sure Heather will be pleased with your enthusiasm! :)



























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  20. I know! I would hate for him to be kicked out of his flowerpot home! He would need extra pie :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts for Heather, Nancy :)


























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  21. I LOVE Save The Cat! Thanks for your input for Heather, Rob, and glad you're enjoying the pie. I don't have any stickers handy, but here's a smooch for you MWAH! Now. Get to work on your 4th of July story :)

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  22. Thanks for your insightful comments for Heather, Teresa, and boy do I wish I lived next door to you and your bakery :)

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  23. Thanks for your thoughts, Erik! I'm sure Heather will appreciate your enthusiasm. How's summer vacation going so far? :)

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  24. You're welcome for the pie, Catherine, and thank YOU for sharing your thoughts for Heather! :)

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  25. That is exactly the reaction I was looking for! Thank you!

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  26. Thanks Eric!

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  27. Thank you for your very helpful suggestions for Heather, Julie, and I'm sorry about your first comment. Thank you for trying again! :)

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  28. Thank you for your helpful ideas for Heather, Wendy, and you may have seconds on pie :)


























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  29. Thanks for your thoughts for Heather, Delores! I have to admit, I want things to turn out well for Tristan :)


























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  30. Yes, I'd read it. I agree with Wendy about combining the last two sentences but other than that I think it sounds great!

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  31. That's a good point Teresa. I address the fact that Tristan is not technically a pet later in the book. Do you think I need to address this point in the pitch?

    Your comment about using the word "squatter" for Tristan made me laugh. Tristan the squatter lived in the flower pot between apartments 7 & 8. It would put a rather humorous twist on the story wouldn't it?



    Thanks for your feedback. I truly appreciate it.

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  32. I have never read SAVE THE CAT, but I have heard good things about it. Thanks for the feedback!

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  33. Thank you Sue! I'm glad you liked it.

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  34. Thank you Nancy! I'm glad you have Tristan's best interests at heart :)

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  35. Thank you Catherine! I'm so glad you liked it.

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  36. That is an excellent suggestion Julie. Thank you for taking the time to type it twice for me!

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  37. Thank you Wendy! That is an excellent suggestion.

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  38. Thanks for sharing your helpful thoughts for Heather, Sian! :)



























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  39. True enough! I actually address the fact that he is not technically a pet later on in the book. Thanks for the feedback!

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  40. Thank you Sian! I appreciate your feedback.

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  41. Vivian KirkfieldJune 12, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    Voted! All the stories sound intriguing...but I felt one pitch was right and tight.:) Thanks, Susanna, for the Chocolate Cream Pie...how did you know that is my ABSOLUTE favorite pie?

    And I would definitely read Heather's story...love the pitch! Love your illustration! Love the idea of a cat living in a flowerpot! And so glad decided to make writing and illustrating your career! Heather, if you want to tighten it up just a little, maybe you could combine it a little.
    Tristan the cat lives in a flowerpot between apartments 7 and 8 in a complex where there are NO PETS ALLOWED! When the strict landlady discovers Tristan, he finds he is in danger of losing his flowerpot home and the neighbors he loves.

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  42. Thank you for you thoughtful comments and words of encouragement Vivian. I agree the pitch would sound better if it were tightened up a little. Thanks for the feedback!

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  43. Yes to the cat in the flowerpot!! And of course yes to pie, I could never say no to pie. :)

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  44. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikJune 12, 2013 at 4:17 PM

    It's goin' gooood! ;)

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  45. So many good pitches. Kudos to all the writers. Tough vote!

    Sure, I'd read it. Any kid would want to take in Tristan. My 3-sentence suggestion: "Tristan the cat lives in the flowerpot between apartments 7 and 8. Everybody loves him--except the pet-wary landlady. When she swings by, Tristan..."

    Hmm...though not sure one can make "pet-wary" a word.

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  46. I love it. I would definitely read it. Is it an outside flowerpot or one in the hallway or lobby?

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  47. Yay! Thank you Coleen.

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  48. That's a good suggestion. I might try something like that. Surely there is a similar word for pet-wary.

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  49. Thank you Genevieve! It is an outside flowerpot. You can see a few of my illustrations for it at http://heatherdentstudio.blogspot.com/2013/06/my-first-picture-book-dummy.html

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  50. Yes, I would read it. Like the idea of the cat living in a flowerpot between two appartments. It sounds like he adopted the neighbors, and really doesn't belong to anyone. But, he is still in threat of being ousted by the landlord.

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  51. Glad you enjoyed the pie, Vivian! There's plenty more in the kitchen, so help yourself to seconds... and thirds if you're so inclined :) Thanks so much for your very encouraging and helpful comments for Heather! :)

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  52. disqus_xkUvROpuwpJune 12, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Yes, I'd read it! A cat and a flowerpot- I'm in! :)

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  53. Voted! It wasn't an easy choice, though...

    Heather's story sounds delightful. I'm a cat person so of course I would read it.

    Maybe it's regional, but I was confused by the word 'flowerpot' and how a cat could fit in one. A flowerpot, to me, is small. Something large enough for a cat to live in I would call a 'planter' but maybe that is just me?

    I also thought the second sentence could do less telling and more showing. Are there some details from the story that would help us see how beloved Tristan is?

    I kind of wanted to know the name of this apartment building, especially if it is a fun/wacky kind of name. That would be more fun than just knowing he lives between apts. 7 and 8.

    Wendy had a great suggestion for tightening the ending.


    I also thought the title needs some work. I'm not sure what to suggest, not having read the story, but it seems a little flat to me. Even "The Flowerpot Cat" would feel more mysterious and attention-getting to me.

    Good luck with the story, Heather! It sounds fun.

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  54. Thanks so much for all your helpful suggestions for Heather, Carrie! :) and thanks for voting!


























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  55. Thanks for chiming in, Elaine, and I'm sorry disqus is calling you names disqus_xkUvROpuwp :)

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  56. Thanks for your thoughts for Heather, Pat! I agree - I find the concept charming :)


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  57. Thanks for chiming in, Genevieve! How does Cupcake feel about cats? :)

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  58. Thanks for your thoughtful suggestions for Heather, Stacy, and thanks for voting! :)

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  59. And that is why we are kindred spirits, Coleen :) Thanks for your enthusiasm for Heather :)

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  60. No surprise here. She's afraid of cats.

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  61. Hahaha :) Poor Cupcake :) My dogs have never seen a cat, but I'm afraid if they did they'd do it a serious mischief. They think anything that runs is fair game and the game's not over til someone stops moving! A number of squirrels, chipmunks, moles, and mice have come to a bad end :(

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  62. Thank you Pat! I'm glad you said that about Tristan because that's exactly how I wanted to portray him. Even cats who have owners often act like they don't belong to anyone. That's just how they are.

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  63. Thanks Elaine! I'm so very glad you liked it.

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  64. Thank you so much for taking the time to provide this helpful feedback. I truly appreciate it.


    I can safely assure you that here in Berea Kentucky cats can fit in flowerpots. This story is loosely based off a cat I know personally who made a flowerpot her home. I've never heard of a planter before. Is that just like a really big flowerpot?


    You are not the first person to say something about the title. I have had trouble finding something I really like. I will have to give it some more thought.

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  65. disqus_xkUvROpuwpJune 13, 2013 at 6:36 AM

    hahahahahahah, it's so mad at me! :)

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  66. I love the idea of a cat that lives in a flowerpot so yes, I'd read it. I'm a little confused about whether the cat is inside or outside though. And if it lives inside, I'm wondering how it came to live there if its a stray (though that may not be relevant to the story).
    Something that might strengthen the pitch for me is a hint at how the cat solves the problem (so we know Tristan is the one that solves it and not one of the neighbors).

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  67. pennyklostermannJune 13, 2013 at 9:28 AM

    I love the pitch! It sounds like a darling story! I can just imagine that strict landlady!

    Nice pitches this month. It wasn't easy to choose!

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  68. Thanks for your enthusiasm for Heather, Penny! And thanks for voting! It's getting harder and harder now that everyone is getting so good at improving based on feedback! :)

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  69. You and Meg - it's doing the same thing to her :)

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  70. Thanks so much, Andrea! These are good questions that I'm sure Heather will be glad to consider.



























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  71. So, now
    I like the pitch even better. That's exactly the way I pictured it!

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  72. Thank you Andrea for your feedback. He is an outside cat. If you'd like to see how I've visualized it you can see some of my illustrations at http://heatherdentstudio.blogspot.com/2013/06/my-first-picture-book-dummy.html

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  73. Thank you Penny! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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  74. Wow, I'm really impressed with these pitches! Somehow I narrowed it down to two of them I liked best, and, yeesh, it was really hard to choose just one of them. They are all well done!

    The flower pot cat sounds adorable! I love in an apartment that can't have pets, but I see cats in people's windows all the time and the couple above us have a small yippy dog. Our landlord must not be so strict, LoL!

    Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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  75. Thanks for voting, Laura, and thanks so much for your comments for Heather :)

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  76. Hmm, Heather, I'm not positive you absolutely need to address that in the pitch, but it would make it less confusing to an agent/editor who might wonder is he or is he not a pet. :) As for "squatter," you could be the person to introduce that bit of vocabulary to a whole new generation. LOL!

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  77. Well, there *was* a house for sale across the street... ;)

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