February 4, 2015

Would You Read It Wednesday #160 - Finley VS The Fly (PB) PLUS The December/January Pitch Pick!

Wowee!  What a busy week it's been so far and it's only Wednesday!

Monday was Phyllis's big day, and boy did we ever get a lot of AMAZING poetry, videography, art, photography, etc to celebrate!  If you didn't get a chance to see/read, you really won't want to miss it (and everything is very short and un-time-consuming so you should totally check it out! :))  Go HERE.

One item that didn't make it in time for Monday's post, and didn't get posted yesterday because I was away at a school visit, is Dana Atnip's totally fun depiction of everyone's favorite weather-hog!
illustration copyright Dana Atnip 2015
please visit her website HERE
I'll add it to Monday's post, but I didn't want anyone to miss it! :)

We will figure out some winners from Phyllis's celebration, I just haven't had time because, as I mentioned, I was "out of the office" :)

Phyllis and I had a LOVELY school visit yesterday!  There were balloons and cake and wonderful students and teachers!  I'm hoping to have pictures to share at some point, but my photo stream won't update... because I am a technopoop!... so maybe next time!

Now then!  Onward to today's business!

First, we have the December/January Pitch Pick!

Here are last month's wonderful pitches, newly tweaked and polished thanks to your helpful advice.

#1 Marla - Froggy Went A Courtin' (PB ages 4-8)
Froggy Went a Courtin’ is an updated version of the traditional song. Missy Mousey has agreed to marry Froggy. But an old tom cat crashes their wedding and wants to eat the bride. It’s up to the strong and independent Missy Mousey to save herself, Froggy, and the day.

#2 Jeff - Stormy With A Chance Of Pizza (PB ages 3-7)
Grandpa’s creative problem solving saves the day (or at least their dinner) when ‘can do’ perseverance triumphs over challenges of a new recipe and Mother Nature’s threats, showing  his storytelling grandchild the value of self reliance.

#3 Bekah - The Penguin And The Pelican (PB ages 4-8)
After being turned away by graceful dancers at a dance hall, a penguin and a pelican try to fix their awkwardness on land by taking lessons from graceful but greedy dance teachers.  When the birds discover that dance lessons have not cured their clumsy gaits, new friends help the pair to keep dancing joyfully and find their natural gracefulness. 

#4 Michele - Hoot And Holly (PB ages 4-8)
When Holly finds the orphaned owlet Hoot in a windswept field near home, she knows he won’t survive without her help. With clues from Hoot and a bit of creativity, Holly teaches Hoot to hunt and fly. And when he is ready, they say goodbye.    

#5 Maria - The Trouble With Homework (PB ages 6-9)
"Demonstrations Speeches Today" is written in large letters on the board. OH NO! What's a kid to do when he's totally forgotten about his homework? Sometimes, you just have to improvise!
Join Ms. Noble's 3rd grade class as they deliver their first-ever speeches. Ethan's folding napkins. Ella's frosting cake. Jillian's crying great, big tears 'cause her cookies didn't bake! But what about Conor? He's come to school unprepared so he'll just have to make his up as he goes along. Don't be surprised if he has to "let the cat out of the bag."
Do you have anything to demonstrate to others? Let Conor's presentation inspire you to create your own speech and show off the skills and talents you have. A speech outline is included to get you started.
Disclaimer: No snails or house cats were harmed in the making of this book! 

Please vote for the one you think is best and deserves a read by editor Erin Molta by Sunday February 8 at 5 PM EDT and I will announce the winner next week.

Now dearies, I know you're pooped out after all that reading and voting, so how about  quick pick-you-up?  Something Chocolate always does it for me :) and I'm in a brownie mood today so...

YUM!
Feel better?

Good!

Today's pitch comes to us from Kirsten.  Kirsten W. Larson used to work for NASA but now writes about rocket science — and just about any science — for kids. She is the author of SCIENCE FAIR SUCCESS! and USING THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD (Rourke), as well as more than a dozen children’s magazine articles. Find her at kirsten-w-larson.com

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: Finley VS The Fly
Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages
The Pitch: On the verge of losing his favorite sandwich to a pesky fly, Finley strikes back with a vacuum, the sink sprayer and more creating chaos in the kitchen. But when he finally wallops the fly, he learns to be careful what he wishes for.

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 Kirsten 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 June so you've got a little time to polish up your pitches and send yours for your chance to be read by editor Erin Molta!

Kirsten is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to catching up on whatever I missed yesterday, and getting to meet an online friend in real life later - all the way from Indiana!!!

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! :)


Reactions:

59 comments:

  1. It sounds hilarious, but I'm wondering if there are some words missing from the pitch above?

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  2. Ha, ha. I think there are. Should read: On the verge of losing his favorite sandwich to a pesky fly, Finley strikes back with a vacuum, the sink sprayer and more creating more and more creating chaos in the kitchen. But when he finally wallops the fly, he learns to be careful what he wishes for.

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  3. I am not sure if I understand the stakes enough in this pitch. I think it has potential to be an over-the-top-hilarious story, though. Reword your last sentence so it doesn't end w/ a preposition. Good luck!

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  4. Maybe. Rewording your pitch to be more clear would be helpful. Perhaps ... On the verge of losing his sandwich to a pesky fly, Finley strikes back. Vacuum. Sink sprayer. Chaos abounds in the kitchen. With the fly walloped, Finley finds what it might mean watch what you ask for. and consider describing it beyond chaos like funny, humorous, hilarious, etc...

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  5. Thanks Kathy.

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  6. Thank you! And obviously some proofreading would help. Yikes!

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  7. Great pitches to choose from, but I made a choice and voted.


    I was wondering if there were words missing, too. I would read it. I think it sounds entertaining.


    I would suggest adding a third item instead of just saying "and more". Also, I think you should say what kind of sandwich instead of favorite. A specific kind would be fun. The ending confused me because of the "wishes". It seems like he just wanting to save his sandwich. I haven't read the story, but is "wishes" the best word?


    Try using some more wordplay:


    When a pesky fly fixes his eye on Finley's *specific kind of sandwich*, the battle is on. Armed with the vacuum cleaner, the sink sprayer, and *one more thing*, Finley is determined to deliver a final blow to the buzz. But when a final swat is served up, Finley wonders who is the true winner in Finley vs. Fly.

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  8. Not a deal. We all do it and this is a good place to do it before you send it out!

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  9. Ah, Julie, thank you for being so kind. I really messed this one up!

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  10. Nah! Shake it off, and get back to work!

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  11. Super weatherhog illustration, Dana!!! Tough decision on the pitch! Kirsten's pitch appears to have a typo (which is a relief - Kirsten is an impeccable writer - nice to see she is human like the rest of us...sometimes!), and Penny nailed great suggestions!

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  12. Thanks Penny! I'm cutting and pasting all this great feedback into a file. And believe me, I will proofread next time. :)

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  13. Hi Kirsten. I feel like what's missing in your pitch is the theme. I mean, I know it's "be careful what you wish for"...but I don't know what makes this story different, or what's going to make me attach to the character. Oh...maybe it's not theme I'm looking for, so much as heart. Are there any secondary characters that Finley interacts with (aside from the Fly...or maybe the Fly really is the secondary character)? What's going to make me root for Finley? And what is his wish or goal? I'm not feeling it yet.

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  14. This pitch isn't very clear to me. I might read it. I think it needs more details. Penny came up with some great ideas.

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  15. Mike Allegra writerFebruary 4, 2015 at 1:26 PM

    Voted!


    I didn't get a chance to pen an ode to Phyllis, I'm afraid. I do hope the little darling will forgive me.

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  16. I voted. It was HARD. They were all so good. I might read this, but I agree with Penny. NEED more details. Penny is the query MAVEN. ;-) I wonder. Did you leave a word out? Also, what else does he do to get rid of the fly? The sink sprayer should be so funny. Your story reminds me of the PB Old Black Fly. Though, it was done in rhyme and is an alphabet book.

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  17. I voted. Yay! May I have an "I voted" sticker, please? :D


    Yes, I would read this. My imagination is running wild with the vacuum and sink sprayer....and one more thing??? This could be hilarious! And I'm dying to know what happens. Ditto on Penny's comments. The pesky typos are just like flies, aren't they?

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  18. Just be careful with the vacuum!

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  19. Those typos are...and like Finley, I shall seek them out and destroy them!

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  20. Thanks Robyn. Yes, typos abound on this one. Grrrrrr. Thanks for the feedback.

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  21. Thank you for voting, Jilanne! I guess I should make an "I VOTED" sticker - actually, an assortment - a collection! - since you guys are always voting for stuff around here :) Thanks so much for your comments for Kirsten, and my apologies that in my extreme tiredness when I posted this I didn't catch and fix the typos!

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  22. Thank you for voting and for your comments for Kirsten, Robyn! I haven't ever heard of Old Black Fly but I like the title - makes me want to read it :) Apologies for not catching the typos in the pitch - my bad! I shouldn't copy and paste when I'm tired - I miss things I should see!

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  23. Thanks so much for you your comments for Kirsten, Rosi, and my apologies that I didn't see and fix the typos when I copied and pasted her pitch! I feel responsible for the confusion!

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  24. Thank you for your very thoughtful and spot-on comments for Kirsten, Heather - very helpful!

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  25. Thank you for voting, Mike! And "the little darling" is sulking because you didn't write her a poem but I told her to stop being so self-centered and get over herself :) So she's sending you a dark chocolate and milk chocolate swirled Hershey kiss - because that's her brand of revenge!

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  26. I know, isn't that awesome, Julie? Of course, it's gone and given Phyllis delusions of grandeur. There will be no living with her now! Thanks for voting and for your comments for Kirsten, and my apologies on not catching the problems in the pitch when I copied and pasted - look how much trouble I caused by being tired!

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  27. Thank you for voting, Penny, and for your very thoughtful and helpful suggestions for Kirsten, including the sample rewording. My apologies for not being awake enough to realize there were problems in Kirsten's pitch and causing all this confusion!

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  28. Mike Allegra writerFebruary 4, 2015 at 4:26 PM

    Please warn her that my wife and son like that kind of revenge.

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  29. Don't worry about it, Sus. I'm the typo queen. ;-)

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  30. It was a tough, tough choice, but I did vote! Good luck to all- it was very hard to choose just one! And Susann


    And Kirsten, I would definitely read this. I was already hooked by your title, I will have to admit, so kudos to you for that. Love the name Finley! As for the pitch, I think it seems to be missing a comma "vacuum, sink sprayer, and more, " which to me promises more fun than any food fight with a fly I could ever imagine! I would like to know just a few more details as to what gives him pause to be careful for what he wishes for. Does he kill the fly and then has flyswatter remorse? Or is he suddenly aware of the awful mess he's made in the house? I thought your pitch set the stage for a very fun and action-oriented story, just needs a little tweaking. Good luck!

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  31. She is currently not speaking to me (or listening) because I told her to get over herself.

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  32. Thanks so much for voting, Karen, and for your helpful comments for Kirsten! Glad you enjoyed the brownies :)

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  33. Thanks so much for your helpful comments and encouragement for Kirsten, Kathy! :)

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  34. Thanks so much for chiming in for Kirsten, Ann! And apologies on my part for not catching and fixing Kirsten's typo - I feel like I caused all kinds of confusion!

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  35. I'm a maybe. The first line of the pitch was a bit problematic for me to get through. I'm wondering if Finley wallops the fly with his sandwich. I wasn't quite sure what he wished for either. I think it might be a really funny story though. I liked Penny's suggestions for upping the stakes & pushing the humor into the pitch.

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  36. Voted and ate some chocolate! :)



    Kirsten's pitch was very concise and well-written...I would totally read that!

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  37. Thanks so much for your helpful suggestions for Kristen, Diane! And I should have been more careful with the proofreading on my end too!

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  38. I'm afraid I was the falling asleep queen :)

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  39. Thanks Karen, sounds like I should make my ending less mysterious. :)

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  40. Thank you for voting, and for helping to get all this chocolate off my hands, and for your encouragement for Kirsten, and for coming to my neck of the woods today so I could finally meet you in real life! :)

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  41. Thanks so much for your helpful comments for Kirsten, Marla!

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  42. Thanks Teresa. That means a lot coming from you!

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  43. Thanks Marla.

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  44. Thank you for the kudos on my illustration Julie! It was fun to make! :-)

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  45. Really sweet forecast, Dana!

    Sorry I've been MIA, Susanna. I'm finally getting caught up . . . Wait . . . It's February?

    Kirsten, I can't wait to read this book. Once you assimilate all the great advice below, I'm sure your pitch will be as irresistible as your story.

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  46. Loving the illustration of weather forecasting Phyllis. Very nice.
    I've cast my vote but it was a difficult choice. I think I'll have two brownie's please.
    I would read today's WYRI. We get the gist of the conflict and ideas of the mess that happens to resolve the conflict, but to have that extra tease near the end really takes the cake. Wait, I'll grab one more brownie for the pitch-giver :-)

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  47. I would read this book, sounds like it could be a lot of fun! Lots of great advice here, so nothing I can add. It WAS a tough vote and an 'I VOTED' sticker is a brilliant idea! He he he

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  48. I am TOTALLY late to the party (yesterday was bonkers!) - but here I am :). I voted (hard, as usual!!) and ate the day-old brownies (which were remarkably good considering LOL).

    I think I would read this one, Kristen. I glanced a bit at the comments below, but didn't read carefully - so some of my thoughts may be repeats. I would change "favorite" to a specific type of sandwich. I know I'm not the first to point out the missing comma. I'd also be more specific about the "chaos in the kitchen" - and probably the last sentence too. Sounds like a fun story with LOTS of room for illustrations!

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  49. I would read your book, Kirsten! The line about the vacuum and sink sprayer pulled me in! I immediately thought of some funny illustrations.

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  50. Thank you so much for your encouraging comments for Kirsten, Ann! And yay! You managed to comment! Did you switch browsers, or did my blog just feel cooperative today? :)

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  51. Thank you for your comments for Kirsten, Angela! And by all means, help yourself to as many brownies as you like after the agony of voting :) I'm glad you enjoyed Dana's drawing - I thought it was inspired :)

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  52. I would read this! It sounds like wonderful, silly fun :) I don't know if someone else suggested this already but I would put a comma after 'more'. Also, instead of two 'he's in a row, I would change the second 'he' to 'Finley.'

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  53. Yes, I did manage to reply. I realized it was me, not your blog!

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  54. I think that's a first! It's ALWAYS my blog! :)

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  55. I'd read it. Lots of great suggestions already but to add one other:

    On the verge of losing his favorite sandwich to a pesky fly, Finley strikes back. He tries the vacuum cleaner, the sink sprayer and (another item) to vanquish his flitting foe, but the fly isn't going down easy. When the chaos finally settles and Finley wins the day, he starts to wish he hadn't.

    I added vacuum cleaner because it fit with the same cadence of your following item: sink sprayer. This sounds very fun.

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  56. Thanks so much for your comments for Kirsten, Johnell, and for your helpful re-wording of the pitch!

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  57. Thanks so much for chiming in for Kirsten, Ariel! :)

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  58. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikFebruary 9, 2015 at 11:42 AM

    I couldn't vote, mostly because the poll closed. Serves me for being late - humpf. Are there anymore brownies? ;)
    Ms. Atnip's picture is awesome! :D
    I don't think I can say any more than what other people have said, but I WOULD read the book! :D

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  59. Don't feel bad, Erik! You are a busy guy! I appreciate you stopping by at all, and I know Ms. Larson does too. No worries about the voting - we have a very clear winner this time, so no tie-breakers were needed, and there are always plenty of brownies for you! :)

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