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BEST FRIENDS FOREVER
ADOPTED TEEN JOURNEYS TO CHINA
GIRL TAKES DARE… *GASP*
For those of you who have a keen interest in developing literature or other media featuring Asian content, you should know about this conference held each year in Singapore. I had the wonderful opportunity to act as a faculty member last year, and it was an eye-opening experience to meet counterparts in the East from all over that side of the globe. Consider attending this conference! You will gain a broader, more global perspective about children’s literature and develop a profound appreciation for our creative counterparts in the East, who share a love of literature and the development of media for children, regardless of where the children live, in the East or the West.
From the AFCC’s Press Release:
Asian Festival of Children’s Content 2013
Premier event starring Asian Content for the World’s Children taking off with The National Library Singapore
The National Book Development Council of Singapore, partnering with The National Library of Singapore for the first time, presents the ASIAN FESTIVAL OF CHILDREN’S CONTENT 2013 from May 25 to 30.( www.afcc.com.sg)
The Asian Festival of Children’s Content (AFCC) is back this year with six days of packed programmes highlighting emerging trends, challenges and effective methodologies for those interested in Asian Content for Children. With some of the world’s top experts and most successful talents in the field invited to share their insights at the following events, delegates can expect to encounter opportunities that can bring their work to the next level and enhance their long-term success.
The interest in Asian content for children is reflected in the size of AFCC Media Mart, which will be the biggest in AFCC history. A larger venue at The National Library of Singapore had to be booked to accommodate the additional booths for vendors.
Kenneth Quek, Festival said, “This year, AFCC not only introduces new initiatives but also expands on existing ones, addressing both the demands of industry players as well as professionals who continue to display a keen interest in Asian Content for their children. These events help us further our mission of being a platform for the creation, production, publication and distribution of children’s materials with Asian content to children worldwide.”
An inaugural programme for the 2013 festival will be the AFCC Seminars, which will focus on Young Adult literature, translation and blogging this year. Product launches are also being introduced.
The following Programmes will comprise AFCC 2013:
- 25 May – AFCC Preschool & Primary Teachers Congress
- 26 May – AFCC Parents Forum
- 27 May – AFCC Seminars
- 28 & 29 May – AFCC Writers & Illustrators Conference
- 29 May – AFCC Media Summit
- 30 May – AFCC Masterclasses
To learn more, visit http://afcc.com.sg.
*UPDATE: All query crits submitted before the deadline have been returned. If your query was turned in on time and you did not receive reply, please contact me directly!
Happy Holidays! My apologies for the delay with free-tiques associated with RLGL. I’m a bit backlogged at the moment so please enjoy your holidays while I get through all of the tiques. Thank you! Woof!
If you are a free-tique winner for novels, please submit up to ten pages (max 2500 words) of your work for critique to sub at wfcat dot com, attached as a word document. You may also include a synopsis. The synopsis will be read for content to help inform my critique. It will not be critiqued itself. Title your email: Free-tique Winner #XXX: MS Title, Format. E.g. “Free-tique Winner #999, MY MS ROCKS, MG”.
If you are a free-tique winner of a PB/Board book – please submit your entire manuscript as a Word Document to sub at wfcat dot com. Title your email: Free-tique Winner #XXX: MS Title, Format E.g. “Free-tique Winner #001 MY PB ROCKS, PB”.
If you are a Round 7 entrant, please PASTE the body f your query letter, single-spaced (no more than 250 words) in an email to query at wfcat dot com. Title your email: Query: Round 7 #XXX, MS Title, Format. E.g. “Query: Round 7 #704, PITCHING IN, YA”
All free-tiques and quick-crits of query letters will be completed my the end of November, roughly. If you do not receive a response by then, please feel free to email me checking for status. You must turn in your query letters and free-tiques by November 5th.
Agent Referrals: You will receive an email directly from me notifying you of the referral so you don’t have to check the website. I imagine those will be done over the course of this week and next. When referrals are complete, your # will be posted here.
Thank you, everyone, for your supports of PAWS and RLGL! Until we play again!
Cynthea and Kissy
Hi Everyone, Round 10 Results are COMPLETE … Page-Off 2 winner is ….. #237! Everyone who is waiting to figure out how to redeem prizes, we will need until next week to work out the delivery of prizes and so on. There’s a lot going on this week for us, so we appreciate your continued patience. Check back here next Monday for more details!
Because this is the last round, DO NOT send in any more pages, even if I labeled the column Go.
# Type Go Stop Notes
|12||YA||X||Overall, I would have read more. I would like to see her talk about something positive that she might want for herself (like a desire/want) versus what she doesn’t want. Please give me something to hang my hat on so I know what I’m rooting for.|
|40||MG||X*||Make it much more clear what the MC is going to be trying to get for herself in these opening pages. Right now, I’m not sure if her character trait Is just part of the story or CENTRAL to the story. Hmm….. I think it needs to be clearer -what will this story be tackling exactly?|
|60||MG||Fun to read. I’ve enjoyed this one, interesting concept.|
|61||YA||X||I’m a bit concerned that this book did not set itself up for magic up front. Also be mindful of forcing in details where the context doesn’t seem to motivate the detail. There are several facts in her that seem pretty irrelevant to what’s going on when you consider what she just discovered. Would her mind really be focused on those minor details about the parent, etc?|
|307||MG||X*||Overall, I think that the story starter could have begun a bit sooner, given the pacing of this first chapter… I’m a bit on the fence about this one because I felt like I should have known more about the potential plot in this many pages… So consider how this chapter could be tightened to really get at the heart of what this journey may be like for the reader|
|313||MG||X*||I’m a bit concerned that this book doesn’t feel well-rounded enough. There doesn’t seem to be subplots. Just a primary plot and it also doesn’t have a positive want coming from your MC - when thinking about your MC, what does the MC want in your book (not what does he NOT want). I want to root for him.|
|407||PB||x||I feel this needs a lot of tightening to fit a picture book format better but I do appreciate the charm of this character and the kid sensibility so far. Read revision 911 for picture books on wfcat. com for some revision tips to shorten this piece|
|500||MG||X||I like the voice, would keep reading. But definitely watch the language in an MG like this.|
|517||MG||X*||The writing is pretty strong, needs a little more control here and there, but I am intrigued by this setup and the character himself. Good work!|
|521||MG||X||Overall, I say this is a decent start (but I’m a bit concerned that it starts off in a fairly commonplace way without a real result. Consider reworking this so that you get to a a more prominent inciting incident. It’s too tempting to start where you did – if you start there, something should happen from it. You know?|
|528||MG||X||A fun start but I hope the reader gets a really good sense of the overall story in the coming pages otherwise, the whole opening will fill too deliberate (forced), as if to bait a reader with high-action – make sure you deliver the goods, too.|
|532||YA||X*||Okay, now we’re getting somewhere. I just hope that the change in behavior of the phenomena in question is motivated by something. It can’t be plucked from thin air so later it should be clear, why at that moment, things started getting different for your MC.|
|602||MG||X||Yes, this was a fun mystery. I do wish that the MC’s voice was a shade more memorable. Overall though, good work!|
|608||YA||X*||This is moving a bit slowly as nearly every detail is written on the page. I’d try to sharpen the focus where you want it and blur out the rest. Right now it seems like everything is on equal footing so it’s hard to know where to focus for story.|
|609||MG||X*||I’m a bit concerned that by this many pages, I still don’t have a clear idea of what this book might be about. I’d tighten this significantly. While the scifi part is intriguing, I still need more story to come across|
|615||CB||X||Hmmm, by this many pages, I needed a better idea of the dilemma this character is going to face. Instead I’m getting little bits of plot in ant-like doses as the story creeps along. I need broader strokes in the beginning so I get a better picture of the ride that is to come.|
|712||YA||X*||Be careful of the MC sounding too whiny and bitter. We still need to root for her so soften a bit. She can be upset, but there’s a fine line between upset and whiny/unpleasurable.|
|720||X||I was troubled by the depiction of the other characters. They felt a bit too stereotypical for me and I would have liked this book overall to exude more believability.|
|724||X||I think after this many pages, I couldn’t figure out what kind of book this was going to me. Some direction|
|807||PB||X||I think this is definitely quirky but has got something important to say. I enjoyed the humor, and felt this was different enough that I wondered how it would do in the marketplace. I would probably encourage you to push the theme a bit farther. Take this to greater heights so that the resolution becomes that much funnier.|
|900||PB||X*||Again this has a very good child-like sensibility to this. And there’s charm here. I keep wishing it were a bit shorter but as an opening it’s still got me intrigued.|
|903||PB||X||I enjoy your sense of humor but I’m not sure I’m getting a strong sense of what this story is really about from these pages.|
|906||ER||X||This next page has convinced me that this falls too far out of the range for an ER. The pacing is that of a longer work. I’d consider simplify this work a great deal. There is lots of charm to the writing though. I just wonder if this structure works as an ER.|
|907||PB||X||This is a very fun cumulative counting PB, I hope that it results in a powerful climax with a clever surprise/twist at the end.|
|910||PB||X*||I like the idea of this and I’m curious to see where this goes, however, I’m also a bit concerned that the MC seems a bit unfeeling (mean?) in this page…|
|912||PB||X||This definitely reads like it should be a chapter book, versus a PB. I would reconsider the format or revamp the execution so that it fits the PB format better.|
|913||YA||X||Even if this becomes more YA, it’s really important that you grab your teen reader on page 1. Nothing super huge has to happen but if this smells like a younger book, you’ll lose them before they even make it to cash register. I’d reconsider your opening.|
|914||PB||X||Still charming. A little tightening here and there but overall, I would have read the next page.|
|1000||PB||X*||Not so sure about the sidebars (you may want to consider having a factual end page so the story isn’t interrupted by sidebars. Like the subject matter just don’t make it too creepy (like in an Arachnophobia kind of way)|
|1001||YA||X*||I always get a little leery if the book opens with an adults as the main character|
|1002||PB||X||This felt a bit wordy for me and I questioned if the premise was universal enough. Hmmm.. Perhaps if the intro had been much shorter, I might have gotten to the heart of your story.|
|1003||PB||X||This premise wasn’t clear in the first half-page and I was concerned that the dialogue overtook what could have been great visuals. I wanted to see more story in this opener for a PB. Some hint that there will be a a great so-what.|
|1004||PB||X||Unfortuantely, I felt text-wise this sounded a bit too ominous in quality, and unfortunatetly the story itself is a bit predictable. I’ve seen this concept in a manuscript done several times. Probably because it is such a common thing that children and parents do. For this to work, this concept really has to be done in a very unique way to stand out. There need to be more market value and emotional value so it doesn’t feel too “everyday.”|
|1005||PB||X||Unfortunately, the premise didn’t feel “big” enough to carry a picture book. Perhaps a very simplified version of this might work as a board book. But in the end, as a pb, I was hoping for more. A bigger so-what.|
|1006||PB||X*||This feels like material for a chapter book versus MG, but it’s too soon to tell. Establish where they are if you can.|
Hello everyone, unfortunately, our Round 10 goal was not met, HOWEVER we see no reason to disappoint people, given all that you’ve done to help our furry friends. Kissy and I are going to keep the Round 10 and drop the Round 11 instead. The deadline to submit to Round 10 is tonight (9/24/2012 11:59pm CST). Please be patient with us on Round 10 results. It may not be until after October 1st before we get finished reading them all.
Ten is a good number anyway, and an even better number was the amount we raised for PAWS – $1810!!!
The walk was amazing. Kissy woke up early to go and he managed to do most of the 4k on his own. There were a few times he needed some help. But in the end the dog did it! Woof!
Thank you all so much for playing RLGL with us. You’ll also be happy to know that because we raised so much money, Kissy won a Wii! We are donating it to a women’s shelter or children’s hospital for the holidays. So feel good that some human kiddos will also benefit from all of your efforts.
Terrific job, everyone, and again, please stay tuned (October 2nd, roughly) for more information about all the prizes that were given out during this game and Round 10 results. We’ve got a lot to think about how we’re going to coordinate all of this, so please sit tight, and enjoy the rest of your week!
Also if anyone is considering a paid critique, this is a friendly reminder that the submission deadline for October is October 5th.
Walk on, folks! We’ll be in touch soon!
UPDATE : Page-off #1 Free-tique winner: #64! The fundraising deadline for Round 10 will NOT be moved, seeing as the race is tomorrow morning. We are still $105 short. So people who want Round 10 to go, Help us get to Round 10 by saving a furry life and clicking on this link and donating! A new fundraising goal has been set.
However the submission deadline for Round 10 will be moved to Monday 9/23/2012 at 11:59PM CST since many of you requested more time because of the weekend.
Page-Off #2 People: Please ATTACH your manuscript (up to 6250 words) in an email to the sub address. In the subject line, put “PAGE-OFF #2, Format, MS title…. e.g. “Page-Off #2, MG, THIS ROCKS!”)
New Entrants, Old Entrants who have missed prior rounds, and those who have received Round 9 results, you may submit for Round 10. The deadline for Round 10 is now MONDAY, 9/23/2012 at 11:59pm CST. Have no idea how to play? Read the rules here and come back.
Thank you so much for your donations. Kissy is #4 for the entire PAWS organization. Who knew that this little idea to help a fellow furry friend, timed with our annual RLGL contest, would actually help a LOT of furry pals. You’ve made a real difference for homeless cats and dogs in our city. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.
This is it, people. Kissy and I have to put on our warm-up suits and get ready for the Run/Walk event this weekend. So send us to the finish line if you can. This will be your last chance to donate for the contest and your last opportunity to save lives.
Round 9 Results *COMPLETE, except for Page-off #1 People*
# type Send in 250 Back to Start Notes
|38||MG||X||Unfortunately, I just didn’t get a strong sense of what the overarching conflict of this story would be and what is potentially at stake…The setup now feels like a preamble. I wonder if the actual start of your story is somewhere further in your book.|
|61||YA||X*||If this book turns magical, I would make sure hints of that are reflected upfront otherwise, it will feel like someone changed the channel….from realistic fiction to fantasy…|
|224||MG||X||You’re in Page-off #2|
|225||MG||X||You’re in Page-off #2|
|226||MG||X*||By this many pages, I’d hope the story would have moved forward more… a whole page devoted to this particular topic seems a bit much …pacing is dragging substantially.|
|237||MG||X||Describe the man a bit more, upon first sighting. You’re in the Page-off #2.|
|239||MG||X||You’re in Page-off #2|
|307||MG||X*||This is definitely a bit strange but I’m curious Feel like you need to make the MC’s voice a bit stronger though. Characterize her a bit more throughout so she can really carry this story.|
|407||PB||X*||This needs some serious editing to tighten up the pacing for a PB, but I still want to see what happens|
|500||MG||X*||Feel like your story actually starts closer to page 5, with the move. The rest is everyday stuff leading up to an incident that changed his life… parts of this could have been easily used as backstory, while your forward story begins with the move…|
|501||MG||X*||I’d shorten the giant graph in the middle and get the main point across versus the whole spiel? Slows your pacing|
|517||MG||X*||This backstory is getting a bit long to be right in the middle of a live scene — Cut it down and try to move the story forward more…..|
|532||YA||X*||I really want to be more pulled in by this story, but I’m losing interest. I feel like I’m lacking plot that’s going to feel different than typical teenage stuff. I know you’re opening hinted at something different – but it doesn’t really seem to effect things. SHow me the point where the special unique thing affects the story. Maybe this book is starting in the wrong place?|
|537||MG||X||By this many pages, I just couldn’t be pulled into her predicament because I didn’t have much to work with to build the empathy I would need to root for her. See if you can work in details about her backstory, that will make a reader want to see her come out okay… Or try a different place to open the book… See Revision 911 article for novels on wfcat.com|
|602||MG||X*||I’d describe what else they saw … what they think might have happened before moving onto the next scene|
|603||PB||X||Unfortunately, by this many words, I’d hoped we could have gotten a lot farther. Also, I’m sensing the so-what in this book may not be strong enough. I do like the story-telling quality though – consider theme of your story and connect that with your target audience.|
|609||MG||X||This is so strange, but intriguing.|
|615||CB||X*||There’s so much charm here embodied in this little character, I want to see the pacing tightened though and you might need a stronger opening overall… I still want to see what happens though|
|626||MG||X*||Slow down a bit. A bit confusing as to what’s going on. I’m also having trouble picturing some things visually. Also I believe an event is referred to here that we didn’t see… It sounds important and I wondered if you should have started there with the story, otherwise, it feels conveniently jammed in here.|
|715||PB||X||This was cute, but the story itself didn’t feel like it had a big enough so what? Identify what this story’s theme is and then see if you can revise the elements so the story can carry a picture book.|
|718||X||This has potential – the overall idea, the humor, etc. but the story arc is very flat. Show me more trouble at the zoo through a typical three-obstacle structure. Show me more conflict by having the human character want the opposite of what he wants the end…. Go full circle – see revision 9-1-1 for PBs on wfcat. for more ideas on what to do. Grab a strong theme to hang this story on.|
|720||X*||With the larger-than-life premise, I really want you to make this main character really stand out in an authentic sense (make her feel as real as possible) so the story overall has believability.|
|724||X*||Enjoy the charm here and really glad a kiddo came into the story… but I hope this has a good so-what|
|801||X||I like the concept but felt the poetry /rhyme should come in stronger /snappier. See if you can also shorten this significantly so that a teacher could read it aloud fairly quickly and still get some points across the kiddos. Maybe pick one or two details each and give this more of a story arc. So that it builds up to a climax that kids will anticipate at the end.|
|805||CB||X*||This reads more like a young MG than a chapter book, given the story’s pacing. Also I’d refer to the parental figure as the mother / mom….|
|807||PB||X*||This is cute, but I’m not sure the cumulartive arc is really working here with a specific purpose….Hmm… Let’s see what happens…|
|808||CB||X||Unfortunately, this opening seems to be character development for the parental figure and not necessarily setting up your MC and your potential plot as a star. Reconsider how you open this story….|
|811||PB||X||Overall, I felt the execution wasn’t strong enough. Work on your pacing and using snappier language to write a PB. Consider that story arc that you need to build as well. The concept is good though. See Revision 911 for PBs on wfcat.com for more tips|
|813||PB||X||Unfortunately, I expected much more through the end of page 2… Like serious mayhem brought on purporsefully by the two MCs. This just felt like it didn’t stand out enough.|
|815||PB||X||I like the literal interpretation but this just feels much too wordy for a PB. I also couldn’t grasp what the so-what was by this many words.|
|900||PB||X*||The two types of animals in this PB feels very familiar so a current bestselling PB. This could be problematic. This intro is also a bit slow, try to cut to half this size… I’ll read on to see where this goes though since it does have a very child-like sensibility to it|
|901||PB||X||This intro has a very slice-of-life kind of feeling to it (needs to really stand out instead!). And in this many lines, the concept get a bit buried. Consider writing this as narrative versus dialogue and in a much shorter, snappier # of lines.|
|903||PB||X*||While charming, I’m not sure this reads like the story is important enough.. I’ll give it another page and see if it reads stronger…|
|904||PB||X*||A good concept, but I wonder if the character development is strong/memorable enough to stand out….I’ll read another page to see where this goes, but it’s gotta feel super-memorable versus everyday-ish.|
|905||PB||X||This one tackles a great concept, but I fear the execution does not feel innovative enough to stand out. It feels intentionally repetitive but not necessarily in a good way. Try approaching this with a unique kiddo voice.|
|906||ER||X*||This seems to fall out of guidelines in terms of sentence structure, repetition for ERs. But I feel like the story so far fits the ER format. Let’s see what happens next|
|907||PB||X||I hope this builds into something totally ridiculous. Cumulative PBs can be really fun.|
|908||MG||X||Unfortunately, there are two many forced details in the opening lines. Be mindful of jamming in details in places where the context doesn’t motivate the placement of the detail. See Revision 9-1-1 for Novels on wfcat.com|
|909||PB||X||The elements of this one felt a bit loose to me. The topic is certainly workable, it’s the execution that I question.|
|911||PB||X||The prose-ish style reads more like a longer-length work than a PB. The main character’s voice also contributes to this feeling. Consider using your writing style for longer-length works.|
|912||PB||X*||Feel like this concept needs to be simplified somewhat as a PB, or it might be better suited as a concept that could work as a chapter book. I like the two major elements… want to see where this heads….|
|913||YA||X*||This is reading more like a young middle grade novel than a YA. Want to see where this goes…|
|914||PB||X*||This one is very quirky, but there is a certain charm to it. Let’s see where this goes…|
|915||PB||X||Unfortunately, this was too hard for me to picture as a PB – what would the pictures look like and would it be visually appealing or just strange? Hmm… This didn’t totally grab me as an opener, others may feel otherwise.|
UPDATE: Still $85 short for Round 9, and tonight (9/17/2012)’s deadline is fast approaching!
Congratulations # 618, you won a free-tique in the PB category! Stay tuned for details after RLGL is over.
Page-off-People, you all cleared 8 pages at the same time. You’re tied. The page-off for a free-tique win will take place in Round 9. For Round 9, please submit your manuscript ATTACHED as a Word doc, beginning from the top of page 1 all the way to 6250 words. In the subject line, put Page-Off, Format, TITLE OF MS. (e.g. Page-Off, MG, THE CLOCK STRUCK TWELVE). Kissy will paw through your pages and mark the page where he stopped reading. Whoever gets the most pages read by Kissy wins the free-tique. Results will be posted in Round 9 Results.
New Entrants, Old Entrants who have missed prior rounds, and those who have received Round 8 results, you may submit for Round 9. The deadline is Monday 09/17/12 at 11:59pm CST. Have no idea how to play? Read the rules here and come back.
Round 8ers, yippee! Kissy knew you all had it in you and then some.
Woof, woof, awoo!
Not only did you get Kissy in the Top 5, but you also met our original Round 8 goal and then some. THANK YOU!!!!!
Kissy is going off to celebrate his Top 5-ness and leave me with the administration work.
Now that Round 8 has been reincarnated, all Round 8 entries submitted before the Round 8 deadline will be processed. Please be patient while we go through these entries. We’ve got a lot going on over here on top of RLGL, so we hope you can be patient while Kissy gets his fur fluffed, nails trimmed, etc. etc. We will get to your entries as soon as we can.
Round 8 Results *COMPLETE*
# Type Send in 250 Back to start Notes
|4||MG||X||While things changed for the MC, I just feel this scene needs to stand out a bit more to lay out what is to come overall … It needs more of a grab-the-reader-factor for us|
|6||MG||X||Your work is in the page-off|
|48||MG||X||You cleared P. 8. You’re in the page-off|
|60||MG||X*||Interesting. Though I wasn’t totally convinced by ye olde voice. Maybe do a dash here and there for comprehension’s sake. It sounds a bit overworked.|
|61||YA||X||Hoping, hoping, there’s a bit more to this than what’s laid out…. Make this character feel a bit more 3-dimensional by cleverly working some details in.|
|62||MG||X*||See my note about heartless/cruel. Still need to temper somewhat or a reader will wonder why bothering with someone who is this mean. She can still be snarky and have mean moments, but balance this out more. You’re in the page-off.|
|64||YA||X||You cleared page 8. You are in the page-off.|
|67||MG||X*||I like what’s happening but I need to see WHY this is so important to the MC. Just being young and doing it doesn’t seem like enough. Properly motivate this so I’m convinced she would disobey her dad like this.|
|222||MG||X*||I like the writing, but the premise is making me a little nervous. Just unsure this would work for me, if I think what is going to happen is going to happen… I’ll give this another page…|
|226||MG||X||A somewhat slow start but I like the idea of this and I’ll keep reading to see what happens next…|
|307||MG||X*||This is strange but I’m curious.|
|313||MG||X||Yes, works much better as MG.|
|407||PB||X*||This is a charming holiday premise but the telling feels so wordy for a picture book. I still want to see what happens|
|500||MG||X*||Felt rather sudden and unexpected. What happens… I almost need a better lead into this, so it doesn’t feel melodramatic or out of place. Hmm…..|
|510||MG||X*||This got very strange, very fast. Not sure I was prepared for this book to take this kind of turn.. I’ll read another page and see how involved I feel with the story…. Hmmm|
|520||YA||X*||This intro is from an adult POV but I’m still curious to see what’s going on…|
|521||MG||X*||Feel like there are some tense issues here.|
|528||MG||X*||Find it a bit forced to have this extensive of a convo while doing what they’re doing. Try to simplify this convo somewhat and then have a full on argument with full details afterward. Or perhaps give me some internal monologue from one of them so I can see what’s going on. Otherwise, it just fees a bit too unnatural.|
|537||MG||X*||Maybe establish in the text if the MC is aware of her own lack of identity if you can …|
|538||MG||X*||I wondered if the past might actually freeze one of the characters in place versus make her this active. Minor pt. though|
|608||YA||X||The internal monologue goes on for a bit, especially when you look at what was last said by the MC. Surprised there is not a more immediate response of some sort from the other character. Minor pt. though.|
|609||MG||X*||Hmm, this conversation is going for a bit and I’m scanning for a bit more story (plot)… a lot of this feels like backstory jammed into dialogue. If it keeps going like this for too long, it’ll started so sound fish…|
|613||PB||X||In the end, this worked itself out a little too predictably and lacked tension. Was really hoping for something unexpected and a bit more plotted.|
|615||CB||X||this furry friend is pretty adorable and quite kid-like, keep up the foreshadowing so I get a bigger sense of what will be tackled in this story that really means something. What’s at stake?|
|617||CB||X||I like this voice, feels a little older than a chapter book to me still, maybe this is a young MG. Either way, let’s see where this goes…|
|618||PB||X||Free-tique Winner! This needs some work but I feel there’s a lot of promise here if reworked into a different format? Are you game? Hit me up after RLGL for how to redeem your tique.|
|624||PB||X||Felt the third page was anticlimactic, unfortunately. I wanted to also see more of an education hook to this – because it has potential for that – as a unique/quirky premise.|
|626||MG||X*||A little bit of trouble understanding what is on this page. Like what had happened with the other character while he was gone…|
|701||ER||Unfortunately, we thought this ended a bit anticlimactically. For some reason we were anticipating more of a disaster but in the end we got something a bit flat. Also more could be done to make this even more humorous. Punch this up a few notches and deliver more of the unexpected by story’s end.|
|709||PB||X||Even though this was about a fellow furry legged friend, in the end we needed a stronger premise. It didn’t make us think there was a big enough so-what throught page 2.|
|711||YA||X||Well-written but my issue is that this is mired in backstory before the forward story even kicks off. I’m grasping for the current story, I want to be hooked into the present before you send me back to fill in the blanks I’ll need ….|
|712||YA||X*||A bit concerned that the foreshadowing feels a bit too forced. Try not to hide things from the reader that the narrator already knows. This rarely reads naturally.|
|714||PB||X||Unfortunately, this was a bit anticlimactic for me. I didn’t feel there was enough of a story here to carry a picture book.|
|715||PB||X*||This still feels a bit loose and wordy, but I want to see where this goes because I like the humor and charm. Though I thought Cow had a certain problem in Page 1. In Page 2, this doesn’t feel evident enough.|
|718||X*||This is very cute, but wordier than necessary. Trim away and let’s see what happens next. I like the educational aspect to this as well. I hope this has a clever ending to go with.|
|719||X||The topic itself is a doable one for a PB, it’s the execution that feels a bit too quirky to me.|
|724||X||I’m looking to see what the marketing angle or emotional value to this text might be…if I can’t find anything super strong by the next page, this might get the paw.|
|800||PB||X||The elements of this PB feel a bit random to me, that said there’s charm here. I just wonder if there’s so-what? I’ll read another page and see where this goes…|
|803||PB||X||There’s a great concept to this but it could be much stronger (right now it reads a bit too flat and lacks spark). Consider giving this one more of a story arc and an even stronger educational hook (have you tried A to Z?)|
|804||PB||X||Hard to connect with the premise. Personification is not necessarily our thing, and this one felt a bit monotone visually to us. Also felt like a clearer educational tie in might be more helpful for this one.|
|806||PB||X||This is written in a short story style and while the characters feel very life-like, I’m concerned this style overall results in a picture book that might be a bit more wordy than it should me. The opening also feels a bit everydayish and I wonder if the concept feels “big” enough to carry a PB.|
|807||PB||X*||Like the cumulative PB just hopes this has a great so-what to it. Was a bit concerned this feels a bit familiar to another PB that came out fairly recently.|
|808||CB||X*||Fun character but be careful of the monologue opening if it goes on too long, also Momma’s role here is kinda huge when compared to the Kiddo. I hope this doesn’t take over the opening.|
|809||PB||X||I like the idea of this, felt like this might work better at the K-level, but my main issue was the tune that was pickedis a December tune and school starts in September. I’d try to pick a tune that is not tied to a religious holiday. This felt too loose.|
|810||MG||X*||This feels a bit forced as an opening ( cluttered with lots of different details) Hard to keep track. Streamline this with some careful editing|
|811||PB||X*||This feels a bit familiar but I’m curious to see where this goes … Reminds me of The Best Pet of All …so I hope this puts a bigger spin on things.|
|812||PB||X||This felt a bit mature for a PB text. As a creative nonfiction piece for an older kiddo, there’s possibilties.|
|813||PB||X||Good title, snappy rhyme, kiddo sensibility, we’re reading on…|
|814||PB||X||This one as a premise felt a bit weak. Execution is also a bit confusing. Hard to picture what is actually going on.|
|815||PB||X*||A bit wordy for a picture book, we’ll see where this goes and hope there’s a so-what.|
Woof, woof, arf arf!
We are so sorry to inform everyone that RLGL took its last breaths last night.
Yip, yip, yip, awoooo!
You all did a wonderful job helping us help save the lives of homeless pets in the Chicagoland area. Kissy and I are forever grateful.
Arf, arf, ruff, ruff ruff!
In fact, you all did so well, we were only $36 short from being a Top 5 Fundraiser for the entire “Run for their Lives” Run/Walk event! Isn’t that amazing?! You all really truly made a difference for PAWS and the furry guys they support. But all good things must come –
Woof, woof, woof.
You wanna make Top 5? But this is not a competition, K-master.
Sweetie, you are the very best there is. It makes no difference if you’re #205 or #5. This is about helping our friends.
Woof, woof, woof, ARFFFF!
Yes, that’s true. A lot of people are hoping Round 8 will go through. They’re our friends, too. I know.
Yip, yip, yip, yip!
Kissy! They don’t have $36 to give. They’ve given enough. They did an amazing job.
Okay, fine. You’ve let this whole thing get to your big tiny furry head. We’ll give them one day to raise $36, so you can take the #5 spot. There. You happy?
There you have it, folks. The master has spoken. If you’ll can start digging in your couches for spare change, raid your kiddos’ piggy banks, anything …. and raise $36 by tonight’s midnight goal, Round 8 will COME BACK TO LIFE… This dog is going for Gold, I mean bronze, no… I think this would be copper or paper.
Someone, please put this pup out of his misery by saving just one more life or two!
Thank you and good luck!
UPDATE: Round 8 deadline AND the fundraising goal has been pushed until Sunday, 09/09/12 at 11:59pm CST. We are so sorry it is taking us this long to get through Round 7 results! Now you should have time to get in your Round 8 pages and donate to keep a furry friend and RLGL alive.
Help us get to Round 8 by saving a furry life and clicking on this link and donating! We are still $200 short. If everyone kicks something in, we should clear the goal. Don’t rely on others to donate for you if you’ve still got something to kick in. Thank you so much for all you’ve done! Woof!
New Entrants, Old Entrants who have missed prior rounds, and those who have received Round 7 results, you may submit for Round 8 until Sunday, 09/09/12 at 11:59pm CST. Have no idea how to play? Read the rules here and come back.
Round 7 Entrants; Please hold until RLGL is over for instructions about the query letter quick crit.
Round 8 is a big one for many of you. It looks like we could have a tie for free-tiques. We’ll need to institute a tie-breaker page-off should that occur (fun!). So people who are getting close to passing 8 pages as novelists or the end of their PBs, start revising now and make sure your next 250-word submission is killer.
Goal 7 has been set (same deadline as Round 8), and this one is ruff (as of today we are $200+ short!) But we are confident you can do it!
Kissy and I want you to picture those cute furry faces you’re helping when you give up that really-bad-for-you Angus Deluxe sandwich at McDonald’s or that Diet Coke and Snickers bar you were going to have on your snack break.
We want you to picture those happy pets sleeping in their new homes. Perhaps becoming a new best friend TO THE KIDDOS WE WRITE FOR.
- Is that not worth giving up, say, the $10 you were going to spend tonight on a bottle of fancy shampoo what won’t do a thing to keep your hair color in place?!!
- Is that not worth giving up the $30 on the tummy-smoother that said it was going to keep everything in, but all it did was cut off the blood supply to your brain?
- Is that not worth the $60 you were going to drop on a splurge massage where the therapist must have been out-to-lunch because your neck is still tight and your back is just as screwy as before?
Maybe, just maybe, a new best friend that a child will remember forever is worth way more than that.
We think so.
Round 7 Results *COMPLETE*. If you do not see an X in the proper column, it is likely you …
1) titled your emailed incorrectly (e.g. missing page number, did not include the assigned # after page 1).
2) sent it to the wrong email address.
3) sent your submission after the Round 7 deadline.
Pardon the pooch but please make sure you help us read and record your submission correctly. Because of the high volume, we can no longer spend the time to find emails, look up numbers, or try to figure out which page you are on. If you made one of these errors, no worries. Correct the mistake and it will be considered in the next round.
Never want to miss another free-tique game again? Please make sure you are signed up for the free-tique email list for future games like RLGL!
Want to personally fund Kissy’s kibble? Consider having a paid critique instead.
# Type Send 250 Back to start NOTES
|6||MG||X||See if you can scale back on some of the violence in this page. It’s a bit much, like melodramatic versus dramatic.|
|38||MG||X*||Very awkward how the time was skipped. Felt like a chapter went missing or something. Make sure these pages feels a bit more well rounded. Is there anything besides the competition that this book witll deal with?|
|40||MG||X*||This whole convo feels like I’ve seen and read this before. Try to find a more unique way to get a bullying scene to go down. This feels a bit too much like the “textbook” version.|
|48||MG||X||I am also wondering if you can establish in these opening pages why the MC is so convinced they exist…. Just a side-note. There needs to be more meat to that.|
|60||MG||X*||I’m noting here that I’d like to have some better sense of the long lost friend in the opening pages so I can become more involved in the dilemma.|
|61||YA||X*||Feel like this teen’s voice is a bit young still. Perhaps give her more dimension with the use of a few well-timed and well-chosen details|
|62||MG||X*||This almost got the paw from Kissy. I talked him out of it for one more page. Be careful of making your MC seem heartless/cruel. This page just felt too mean. Scale back.|
|64||YA||X*||Watch the setup pacing… this is dragging a bit… need to move to the next plot point soon.|
|226||MG||X*||This page made your MC feel too crybabyish and melodramatic. And I wondered how well it served your story overall, with pacing. In this many pages, I need to know a little more about what this story will be about aside from the change in environment.|
|307||MG||X*||I’m really surprised the MC doesn’t make a bigger deal out of her discovery and falls asleep instead. Feels really off to me. I’d rework. I’ll read on to see where this goes, but its got to go somewhere soon or I’m afraid Kissy will give it the paw.|
|313||YA||X*||The plotting feels a bit simplistic even for an upper MG novel. I think it might just be that the first chapter isn’t fully capturing the breadth of this book. I’ll see if there’s more to this, but Kissy’s paw is twitching.|
|400||CB||X*||This actually reads more like a MG novel. How old is your MC? Try to establish in the opening pages …|
|500||MG||X*||Writing is promising BUT we’ve got an issue with pacing in three pages already. What exactly will this story be about? Not really sure. Should have some clue in these opening pages.|
|501||MG||X*||Be careful of making the MC sound too superficial when it comes to the opposite sex. To be this self-aware is a bit forced-feeling. So scale back just a touch.|
|506||PB||X||I feel like this one began to feel too repetitive and the illustration potential as well, just felt like more of the same but only slightly different. Consider how you can make this feel more engaging both in text and visually as well.|
|507||YA||X||Unfortunately, I wasn’t drawn in like I wanted to be. I think the issue is that the voice of the MC is very muted. She could be anyone in these opening pages. I think the urgent scene doesn’t give you much of an opportunity to show off your MC and pull us in. Try starting off in a less tense moment.|
|509||YA||X*||The vision sequence feels very melodramatic. Just give me a couple of flashes each time she really touches it…. Instead of a whole trance that’s really really hard to follow.|
|510||MG||X*||I had re-read this a few times to make out what was going on. Still not clear. I’d rework this some more. Try not to overwrite the logistics of what’s happening. This is probably sounding more complicated than it needs to be.|
|517||MG||X*||Don’t keep secrets from readers that the MC is well aware-of. Here, the 4th wall is broken and this feels more like leading your reader (in a bad way) versus foreshadowing in the book in a good way. Use of cigarettes in an mg novel can be troubling for book-buyers. It’s likely that will be edited out of your book.|
|521||MG||X*||I’d trim down the descriptions a bit; feels kind of repetitive. We get that it’s creepy, not tell us the story, you know?|
|523||PB||X||Here’s the thing: love the humor, the creativity and shear amount of effort it took to create this. BUT, I just felt like this premise wasn’t strong enough to carry a picture book in the end. I needed that so-what? factor.|
|525||YA||X||I feel like we haven’t started on a day that is different for the main character and I’m also wondering if there’s a bit too much going on with two characters who both have psychological issues in the opening pages. The problems are competing for my attention as a reader. Consider tackling just one verus both.|
|528||MG||X*||I’m wishing the main character’s voice had a bit more spark to it. Right now the voice is a bit flat.|
|532||YA||X*||The detail about the boy feels really stuck in. Still feel like the voice is young. Like maybe a 14/15 versus a full-blown 16.|
|536||PB||X||Unfortunately, this stil doesn’t read differently enough. The ending was anticlimatic (I expected some bigger payoff) but never got it. See if you can put more zing in this text. Something surprising. It seems to peak in the middle, versus at the end.|
|538||MG||X*||Minor: The little bit of backstory that is stuffed in here feels very forced. I’d remove.|
|601||PB||X||The premise is a good one, but in the end I felt the execution wasn’t “big” enough to carry a picture book. Think larger than life, not just like life. Otherwise, this might get marked as better for a magazine short story instead.|
|603||PB||X*||I want to see how this turns out. The storytelling style is great BUT but… I feel like this could be even stronger if you spun this to be more kid-oriented.|
|605||YA||X*||The sudden shift in gears was a bit unexpected. I wondered if there was a better way to start the story that feels less-forced.|
|607||PB||X||We loved the fun, humor, and energy in this text. But … felt you might want to age up the characters for kindergarten audience. OR simplify this quite a bit and make it into an irresistable little board book. Right now, it’s caught in the middle with the format.|
|610||PB||X||We like the uniqueness of both of your texts but for RLGL, I think this is too hard to judge for us. The simplicity and charm of the text is there for both of these works. But we feel like we’re missing something to make these stories feel like more of a sure thing. So don’t take this X too seriously. Except maybe consider fleshing out both of your works a bit more so the story arc is stronger and more emotionally involving.|
|611||PB||X||Unfortunately, both the writing style and this premise didn’t fully grab me as a picture book text. It just felt a bit mature to me as well for a slightly older ready. Very much more like a short story.|
|613||PB||X*||I’m charmed by the MC but I am also concerned about the writing style of this text. BUT … I’m charmed by the MC, so I’ll keep reading.|
|615||CB||This has a certain charm to it. We’ll keep going and see what happens|
|618||PB||X||Fun and deceptively simple which si great. Like the cumulative feel of this story as well… Let’s just hope there’s a great payoff.|
|619||ER||X||Now that I’ve read further, this feels very much like it’s written for a longer format. It could be an a chapter book or MG novel based on the writing style. Not an ER.|
|622||PB||X||I love the charm and wit of this text, but I wondered if perhaps you have a fun short story, and not a picture book text. See wfcat.com article on Revision 9-1-1 for PBs.|
|624||PB||X*||This is funny but I’m not sure how this would work as a PB if this doesn’t have a great so-what…I’m curious to see where this goes.|
|700||PB||X||Unfortunately, I feel the elements in this PB feel a bit too loose. But I did like that the MC had an aspiration and some obstacles to overcome and that was evident from the start.|
|701||ER||X*||There is a certain charm to this text. I’d simplify the sentence structure even more though. A bit worried that it is not character-driven enough.|
|702||PB||X||As it stands, this reads a bit too “slice of life.” Try to turn ordinary occurences into bigger concepts with a clear so-what? We need more emotional value / market value to carry a picture book.|
|703||BB||X||This fees a bit too advanced as a board book and not rich enough in entertainment value or emotional value as a picture book to me. Try again?|
|704||PB||X||The opening here feels a bit everydayish, and the concept feels a bit loose as well. See wfcat.com Revision 9-1-1 article for PBs|
|705||PB||X||An interesting spin BUT I worry this reads a bit complex / mature for the target audience. Try approaching this in a more direct fashion. Simplify somewhat.|
|706||MG||X||Bits of this opener feel a shade forced, I think the tense is getting in the way a bit, but still promising. I’ll read on …|
|707||PB||X||This one feels a bit older than a PB because of the narrator’s voice. But more importantly the premise doesn’t feel “big” enough for a picture book. You might want to consider expanding into writing for a longer format.|
|708||PB||X||This reads very much like a young mg novel in voice and writing style. Check out wfcat.com article, Revision 9-1-1 for PBs.|
|709||PB||X*||Like the charm of the opening 4 lines, but I’m not sure this premise is going to feel strong enough for a PB to me. I’ll keep reading to find out..|
|710||PB||X||This one feels more like a nice poem, than a full-blown picture book. And I was left with a feeling of … hmmm… I’d rather see something meatier for a PB text.|
|711||YA||X*||A very common opening for an MG or YA. Please do everything you can, NOT to start a book this way because I’m afraid it won’t stand out when compared to others. I’ll pretend this didn’t happen tho because I want to see if the second page will ready more uniquely.|
|713||PB||X||Enjoy the idea of this but felt that doing this to a particular tune limits your story a lot. It depends on a reader’s awareness of the tune for the rhyme to work. Try not to limit your idea to a particular tune. And let loose!|
|715||PB||X*||This concept is familiar (meaning there are other books like this), I’m going to wonder if this is BETTER than what’s out there as I read the next page.|
|716||X||I feel like this one is tough for a couple of reasons: one the style feels a bit too repetitive and the illustration opportunites aren’t as visually captivating as they could be for a picture book. Theme-wise, it’s a good idea though. I just wondered if it could be approached in a “bigger” way, versus an everyday-ish way so it stands out as a manuscript|
|717||X||This reads very much like a short story versus a picture book text. The writing style could also work for longer works in novels, etc. See wfcat.com Revision 911 article about PBs.|
|718||X*||Fun, but I wondered if this was going to have a great so-what to go along with it. Let’s find out…|
|719||X*||Workable premise, but the telling feels everyday-ish. How can you tackle this premise in a way that we’ve never seen before. I’ll see where this goes because the premise is in the ballpark but … its gotta stand out.|
|720||X||Minor: but take the year off so your book will have more longevity.|
|721||X||The humor is really cute, but the character trait just doesn’t feel like a lot of people would go … Ah! Yes, my kiddo has this problem, too. I’d like to see this premise turned into something even more universal. Something that feels like it’s got a built-in so-what.|
|723||X||This opening is a bit confusing and there are parts that feel forced (like trying too hard to write in a literary way when the text it selfs feels more commercial.) Go for consistency in style and slow down a bit.|
|724||X*||Interesting start but the conflict is not readily established in 125 words; this concerns me for a picture book. I’d cut this down quite a bit to get to the meat of your story a bit quicker.|
New Entrants and those of you who have received Round 6 Results, you may submit for Round 7 until Wednesday 09/05/12 at 11:59pm CST. Have no idea how to play? Read the rules here and come back.
UPDATE: We are still $150 short for tonight’s goal. Kissy’s shaking in his boots over here. We won’t be able to save more homeless dogs and cats unless people put their donations in now … Don’t depend on anyone else to contribute for you if you’re still holding back. We had a shortage last time. This time, there will be no extensions, even if we’re $5 short. Kissy and I are thinking going from door-to-door might be a quicker way to help our furry pals if all of our writer friends are all tapped out.
So … let’s bring it home, and help an animal find a home.
Remember: There is a special prize tied to this goal for all Round 7 entrants so keep reading. We think this is worth at least two cups of coffee at Starbucks. Quit the caffeine and put your money here.
Who’s terrible at writing query letters? You? You? You?!
Well, let Kissy put a paw on your query letter and see what happens (see this link for tips on writing query letters for novels and picture books on WFCAT.com). If our next fundraising goal is met, anyone who has entered Round 7 will receive a Quick-Crit of of a query letter. Your query letter should be no longer than 250 words. This quick-crit will include comments that will help you work your query-letter into submission shape! We’ll even rewrite some lines if something is easily fixable. Trust me, you won’t want to miss out. Instructions for how to submit your query letter will be given AFTER Goal 6 is met. Do not send us query letters now.
Don’t have a work to submit for Round 7?!
No problem. You’re a writer, right? You’ve got plenty of time to whip out 125 words for a new idea and enter that before the Round 7 deadline. You never know! You might have the start of a new great work by the end of RLGL!
ROUND 6 RESULTS ARE COMPLETE! If you do not see an X in the proper column, it is likely you …
1) titled your emailed incorrectly (e.g. missing page number, did not include the assigned # after page 1).
2) sent it to the wrong email address.
3) sent your submission after the Round 6 deadline.
Pardon the pooch but please make sure you help us read and record your submission correctly. Because of the high volume, we can no longer spend the time to find emails, look up numbers, or try to figure out which page you are on. If you made one of these errors, no worries. Correct the mistake and it will be considered in the next round.
Never want to miss another free-tique game again? Please make sure you are signed up for the free-tique email list for future games like RLGL!
Want to personally fund Kissy’s kibble? Consider having a paid critique instead
|#||Type||Send in next 250 words||Back to Start||Notes|
|4||MG||X*||I think the issue is you might have a scene that feels very true to life, but this as a first scene doesn’t quite give me a broader sense of the overall story. A bit more foreshadowing in your opener (aside from your intro paragraph which still didn’t seem big enough) will help this one a lot. I keep going because the writing is promising, but is this opening scene directed enough?|
|6||MG||X*||This is taking a while to get to this point, so get on with it!|
|26||CB||X*||Still feel like I did last page. There’s a lot of introspection happening but not a lot of actual things happening. I don’t need car accidents and stuff like that, but I need some better sense that things are moving forward in time and that things actually happen in the book. Kissy’s paw is twitching.|
|38||MG||X*||Okay, this is a bit bizarre and I’m really not sure I totally get how this is an actual competition when this is what a contestant does but … One more page….|
|40||MG||X*||This feels like it’s a bit slow as an opener (not much context either) but I’ll see where this goes|
|44||YA||X*||A bit confused about why they’re not in hiding. Clarify in p2.|
|48||MG||X||This is so bizarre but I have to keep going to see what happens …|
|54||YA||X||Unfortunately, by this many pages, I wasn’t as pulled in as I would have liked. I just couldn’t get on the same page as your MC. I wanted to root for her, but there wasn’t much to root for. She felt a bit hollow / empty in the end, without a real desire to hang my hat on.|
|57||CB||X||I enjoyed the characters and there’s a lot of promise to the writing. Story-wise, the search for random objects seems rather arbitrary. I’d think about starting this a little differently with a little more backstory so that these kiddos would be convinced that there really is a mystery to uncover with super good reasons why.|
|61||YA||X*||This feels a shade young for YA, in terms of voice and behavior, but I’ll go with it. Fill in some visual detail thouhg as you write. Having a hard time picturing the people.|
|62||MG||X*||See my note about present story. Hope this is coming.|
|64||YA||X*||I’m on the fence. The MC still feels hollow and I want to get a better feel for her, and her view of the world as the story plays out.|
|67||MG||X*||Still not really sure what the current forward story will be about for the main character. One of the issues is the place where you started was not the moment that was different for the MC. It was an everyday thing for her… Your starting point is somewhere else in the story. and I’m concerned I might not get to it.|
|216||PB||X*||This actually reads more like a young chapter book than a PB. I like the character’s very kiddie-like perspective and I wonder how this would work as a chapter book… I’ll read the next page and see where this goes|
|220||MG||X||Ultimately, I wasn’t as drawn in the with the plotting or the main character as I would have liked. There are great elements here but I’d love to see either a more distinctive personality from the MC or more engaging plotting in the opening pages. This was just a bit too slow for me.|
|222||MG||X*||By this many pages though I should have a clearer understanding of what this book will be about.|
|225||MG||X||Okay, still fun and imaginative. I’d take out the pop star reference and make something up so it doesn’t get dated too fast.|
|226||MG||X*||Be careful of making her seem too cry-babyish.|
|232||PB||X||I think what this needs is to be a bit more character-driven for a tall tale. Your kiddo character should probably have some fear/issue that has lead to the dilemma, one that then gets out of hand, but then the fear is ultimately conquered through the kiddo’s attempt to fix the situation. As it stands, this just reads like a premise that isn’t strong enough without a bigger so what.|
|243||MG||X||Ultimately, the plotting didn’t feel well-rounded enough in the opening pages. Hint at other subplots in your opening pages so the book feels like it has more depth than a typical playground scene that has been played out before. What makes your book really unique? The voice is great, I worry the setup in the opening pages just doesn’t do enough to stand out.|
|311||MG||X||This feels a bit bogged down with backstory and is written in a way that feels quite passive. Consider beginning your book with a live scene and as you establish the current story, fill in the blanks with your backstory.|
|313||YA||X*||This still reads very middle grade. Be careful of pitching this as a YA.|
|503||PB||X||There’s charm but I still can’t find the so-what that will really give this some marketing power.|
|504||PB||X||Ultimately I couldn’t readily identify what was the marketing value, the kid connection, or even the theme, of this particular premise. I was also a bit concerned it took much too long to get to the actual problem for a PB.|
|505||MG||X||Now I get what’s going on but I’m not sure I personally connect with the premise. It felt a bit cartoony for me? Other people may differ. I thought the writing on p.2 was pretty strong though. We hope to see a different work from you.|
|506||PB||X*||Like the animal nature idea but wonder if the execution is going to stand out enough. Reads a bit too prose-ish in style.|
|507||YA||X*||Needed to know why the female character must help. What’s at stake?|
|509||YA||X||Character feels a bit young, but too soon to tell…I’ll keep reading|
|510||MG||X||You might want to explain what the other kids do when the MC does her thing in this page.|
|511||PB||X*||Hope there’s a good so-what to this premise.|
|512||PB||X||I just couldn’t find the so-what? It seemed to go on and on but I needed a better sense of the direction.|
|513||PB||X||Some elements of this are promising but overall this felt too loose. Like not what most people think of when it comes to this topic. Go for the obvious … Make this feel tighter in concept|
|517||MG||X||Okay, but doesn’t he look his age, even though he may be tall? Explain that one a little …|
|518||CB||X||Ultimately, the main character felt a bit too adultish even though the premise has fantasy elements that often appear in children’s stories. Something aboutt this felt like it was written in a way that was a bit too mature as a chapter book. I would simplify the text somewhat and give your MC a more child-like POV.|
|519||PB||X||The elements here feel a bit loose, and while the premise is a good one, the execution feels a bit commonplace. Also work on picture book style versus regular prose. See Revision 9-1-1 for PBs on wfcat.com|
|521||MG||X*||Not sure the MC would be worried about food at a time like this, but .. I’ll keep reading and see if this stands out enough as an opener.|
|524||PB||X||I’ts not clear to me how this story will connect with a lot of readers at the get-go. It feels very anecdotal versus universal? Like a short story told in rhyme but not necessarily a picture book. Also the plotting feels a bit random too. Not sure where this is really headed|
|525||YA||X*||It’s unclear why the story has to start here. Feels like this is just the same old same old for your MC. The opening feels a bit …”let me show you what’s wrong with this character and what her background is…” versus .. Let me know show you what’ wrong and her backgruond and why THIS day is important to start the story. Why it matters to the MC …|
|527||PB||X||The subject matter is common in PB manuscript submissions. Got to find a more unique, pizzazzier and sparklier way to get at the subject so it stands out among your competition. Also note that your PB text is mostly dialogue. Try to find more balance between dialogue and narrative text. See WFCAT.com Revision 911 for PBs.|
|532||YA||X*||This voice feels a bit young and the parents a bit comical. The content as well also seems more MG. Regardless, I’ll read on for another page. Be careful of opening books with this kind of setup. Super common way for manuscript submissions to open. And this opening didn’t feel particularly unique.|
|536||PB||X*||I’m gonna read another page and see if something sparks for me to make this stand out more. Right now, I feel like it has potential but what’s the magic ingredient that’s going to make this standout over the other references I just provided in my last note?|
|538||MG||X*||The dialogue feels a bit loaded with background info. Be careful of making it sounds forced.|
|600||PB||X*||I’ll see where this goes, but I’m a bit concerned the premise may be too narrow? Let’s see what happens…|
|601||PB||X*||A nice little premise here but it seems to repeat the same point over and over again, versus moves the story forward and upward in intensity.|
|603||PB||X*||This has classic feel to the storytelling and a good sense of humor, but I wonder if this will feel kid-friendly enough? I’ll read on…|
|604||MG||X*||Unusual style for MG which I find interesting. But I’d like to see some greater sign of potential conflict or the MC’s problem in P1. Pull me in.|
|605||YA||X*||There’s a lot to keep track of in 125 words. A bit disorienting. Slow down a bit.|
|606||PB||X||You’ve got several concepts mixed into one story and I worried the premise is a bit complex and loose. Consider simplifying to the more unique idea in this concept versus mixing up the two.|
|610||PB||X||I hope some of the elements here aren’t too loose. I’ll keep reading …|
|611||PB||X*||A bit slow and detaily for a PB, but maybe this is a folklore-ish kind of tale. I’ll read on and see where this goes|
|612||PB||X||Like the premise, but this is written like a young chapter book or MG novel to me. See wfcat.com for Revision 911 articles for picture books. A bit wordy and detaily and I wondered if this story would run long as a picture book.|
|613||PB||X*||The premise seems somewhat doable and this has a kiddie sensibility to it, I’m curious to see where the next page goes, but I’m also concerned that the execution doesn’t stand out enough. Right now, the writing of this PB text feels quite everydayish. I need sparkle, pizzazz. Great humor also works.|
|614||PB||X||The everydayish setting and the writing style didn’t stand out enough to make your premise really shine. Take the same concept and make this story feel “bigger,” larger than life. See the Revision 911 PB article on wfcat.com for other ways to improve on its prospects as a picture book.|
|615||CB||X*||This opening is a bit too cloaked, confusing. But we are fond of this kind of animal so we’ll see where this goes. Slow down a bit and don’t leave your reader behind.|
|616||PB||X||Unfortunately, this reads much older than a PB text because of the writing style and content. The style is more short-story than PB, see Revision 911 for PB article on www.wfcat.com|
|617||CB||X*||This feels slightly older to me than a chapter book, based upon the MC’s voice|
|619||ER||X*||This is not reading like an ER to me. I’d simplify the sentence structure and also try to inject more humor to the piece. Right now, this feels a bit too everydayish to stand out. I’ll see where this goes though because I do like the premise for an ER…|
|620||PB||X||I think telling this from the child’s POV for a PB will serve your story better, versus the parent, as a picture book. I’m not sure the rhyme is serving the story either… it doesn’t scan as well as it could and I could see this idea working just as well without the rhyme. But mainly it’s the adult POV that’s bothering me.|
|621||PB||X||The concept is interesting but the execution feels much too loose. See Revision 911 article for PB on wfcat.com. I’d like this to feel much tighter as an opening page.|
|622||PB||X*||I’ll see where this goes, but I worry about the wordiness of the text and I wonder if this feels like the problem is a bit too old (non relatable) for your target audience.|
|623||BB||X*||Great idea. I’d consider putting more of a story arc to this (in it’s simplest form.) Simplify some of the wording. Give this one a teeny twist at the end, and make it slightly less repetitive. Got that?|
|624||PB||X*||Concerned about wordiness for a PB text, but an interesting concept, I’ll see where this goes.|
|625||PB||X||The concept is interesting, but the execution is a bit too far off the mark. The rhyme needs to come in a lot stronger, and I also worried that this was feeling a bit too everydayish for a PB. If this was told in a sparklier, snappier fashion, we might have been more into this.|
|626||MG||X*||This opening felt like a BIG bait and switch. In other words, the expectations were set high, then nothing was delivered. I’d be careful of this. I like the historical aspect to this, so I’ll read another page but I’d rework your opening.|
|627||PB||X||This has a lot of universal appeal (what kid has not been there?), but the writing style and the execution lacks the energy and unique sparkle I would expect from a PB. I’d analyze the FUNNEST picture books you’ve ever seen featuring everyday life and see where your text is lacking.|