Sunday, February 23, 2014


Title: Paloma and the Bow Wow Bar Mitzvah

Genre: contemporary early middle grade 


Impulsive, fur-phobic, nine-year-old Paloma Perez, needs cash fast, or she’ll miss celebrating her best friend’s birthday bash at the most epic-i-licious concert ever. Pet-sitting a lost and most-likely dead cat isn’t working out, so Paloma literally turns herself upside down to come up with her newest venture, Paloma Perez Party Planner Extraordinaire. But she ignores her best friend’s warning and her first event, a Doggie Bar Mitzvah, unloads a pooper-scooper full of trouble. Paloma struggles to pull together a furry fun-a-palooza, but amid the chaos of cat party crashers (they come for the herring) and yarmulke-eating canines, even Paloma is worried she might fail, and worse, she might lose her best friend too.

First Line: 

Summer Vacation Rule Number One: if you’re trying to save the planet, don’t use left-over Easter egg dye as hair color. 


  1. This is one of the best first lines in the whole contest. I love how the voice from the pitch carries over into the opening. You've got that middle grade vibe nailed. Be careful of sentence length though. Some of them run a little long and could be broken up for better flow. Try reading your pitch out loud and see where you run out of breath. ;) This sounds like such a fun read. Best of luck to you!

  2. Thanks for your comments and advise, Kimberly. Great idea for me to read the pitch aloud, even though I'm scared sh**less to pitch in person. :) But one day, I'm sure I'll have to. Thanks again for your suggestions and kind words.

  3. Wow--great job revising! I love the way your fun, quirky voice shines through. And your first line is fantastic!

    I agree with Kimberly that breaking up some of the longer sentences could help this flow even better. I think the very last line would pop even more if Paloma's fear of failure isn't in the same sentence as the funny Bar Mitzvah chaos.

  4. Thanks for the suggestions, Mindy. I'm use to using three sentences for written pitches so I tend to make my them long and jam-packed. ;)

  5. OMGosh! Your first line is genius. Seriously. I'm sensing humor and MG all over the place with this.

    Saying this, I'd like to see a few of your sentences shortened to add more punch. Don't take any of those details out, just tweak and add a few periods. My only other observation is that I did get stuck on one phrase 'Pet-sitting a lost and most-likely dead cat isn’t working out'. What's up with the dead cat? Is it her cat? Did she kill it? (I don't think so, but I'm just bringing up thoughts.) Other than that, nicely done!

  6. Thanks for the comments and suggestions. I'll definitely shorten up the sentences and clarify the cat. :)

  7. I noticed during #MSWL on Twitter the other day that someone specifically said they were looking for young girls with strong voices and animals. I instantly thought of your pitch! You should go look through it and add the agent to your query list!


Please leave your courteous and professional comments for the writer! We'd love to hear from you! : )