You guys are great! I appreciate your participation in this contest and hope that you will return often and participate in future contests. I am very open to suggestions for future contests—let me know what you think will be fun and helpful, as well as the frequency you’d like to see a contest done.
I hope that if you’ve enjoyed this as much as I have that you will continue to come back to this site regularly and comment on the posts, send me questions to answer and queries to critique, and that you will spread the word about this site. (I recently changed the settings to allow you to easily e-mail posts to your friends. Just click on the envelope at the bottom of the post.)
Now, on to how I chose my winner.
The purpose of this contest (other than just to have some fun) was to practice getting the most important info into the smallest amount of wordage, ergo, the three sentence limit and the 90 word bonus. You got one point for each of these conditions.
The absolutely most critical info I need to gain from a pitch is a feeling of whether or not I can sell it, ergo, the specific details I asked for in the contest.
Genre: Is it in a genre that is selling well now and that I expect to sell well a year from now when the book is released? (1 pt)
LDS: Would LDS readers enjoy this? Would they go into their LDS bookstore looking for something like this? (1 pt)
Name and Age of Protaganist: This indicates the gender (usually) that it will appeal to, and the age range of the target reader. (1 pt each)
Plot: A short description of what I can expect to happen in the novel (1 pt)
Most of you got all of these points.
Subjective: Then there were another 6 points awarded for things like if I’d ask for a partial based on the pitch, if it was unique—something I hadn’t seen/heard before or a new twist on the usual (this was the hardest one to do, given that you only had 3 sentences), if I personally would want to read it, and other totally subjective factors like did I smile when I read it, did I laugh out loud (in a good way), did I go “awwww…” etc.
Later today, I will post a summary in the comments trail of each pitch stating my opinion on what you did best, where you lost points, what would strengthen the pitch and whether or not I would ask for a partial/full.
P.S. Winners are free to use their bragging rights in any way they choose. However, it might not impress a publisher/editor if you include it as part of your query.
P.P.S. Those of you who did not win are free to post your identity in the comments trail of your pitch if you want. I will not be doing so. You may also politely explain how I so clearly missed the point of your pitch, if you want.