What I gained from Pitch Wars…even though I didn’t get in

A rush of adrenaline coursed through my veins as I hit the final submit button. After months of frantically editing, rewriting, and revising my novel, I submitted it to Pitch Wars. And then I waited.

And waited some more.

By the time the second week rolled around and I hadn’t received any full MS requests, I was getting nervous. By the third week, I knew it was over. I didn’t get into the elite program.

Rejection sucks. No getting around the basic truth. For those of us who participated in #PitMad, and #AskMentor twitter chats, and #aesthetics, and Facebook groups and did our research on mentors, and spent countless hours polishing that first ten page, not getting into Pitch Wars, was disappointing.

BUT…

Despite the blow to the ego, I’m glad I went for it. Participating in Pitch Wars taught me a few things and helped me along my writing journey. First of all…

Pitch Wars is a great way to grow your writing community

I’m one of those closet writers. I’ve been writing for years but only on the side of my demanding corporate career. I mostly wrote in isolation. This year, I decided to leave my job and write full time and I knew I needed critique partners and writers to encourage and grow me along the way. Pitch Wars couldn’t have come at a better time.

Through the Twitter chats, I found new friends to critique pages and even found an awesome CP to swap entire manuscripts with. I also found a new writing friend to do virtual zoom writing dates with and who’s way more in the know about all things books. I’ve made several new writing friends who are on the same journey as me and who I’ve already learned so much from.

Pitch Wars also gave me motivation to finish my book

Let’s be real. Editing a book is just as much work, if not more, than writing a book. I finished the first draft of my newest novel in May. To get it ready for Pitch Wars I worked some pretty long and crazy hours. Without the Oct. deadline constantly looming, I wouldn’t have completed a passable version of my novel that quickly. Pitch Wars really helped me stick to a timeline and hold me accountable got my goals.

I got my first agent request through Pitch Wars

I almost didn’t do #PitMad just because it’s so competitive and I’d heard that the space was so crowded, writer’s rarely get agent requests anymore. But with nothing to lose but my pride, I decided it would be a good chance to work on comps and my pitches for my novel.

So, I went for it. Annnnnd got a request from an agent! Dreams really do come true! At the time, I didn’t even have my synopsis written. Which leads me to the next benefit of submitting to Pitch Wars…

It helps with getting the query letter and synopsis polished

With my new found community of other Pitch War hopefuls and new writer friends, I received TONS of excellent feedback on my submission packages. I ended up getting my first agent rejection letter from that same agent, but that’s to be expected. What was surprising and wonderful were all the people who offered advice and came along side me and made my query letter, synopsis and first chapter really shine.

They also were very encouraging when I got that rejection letter. Thanks guys! You all rock!

I still think rejection sucks. And I’m sad I didn’t get in to Pitch Wars or even get a full MS request. But that’s ok. I believe in my book and I’m going to keep working at getting it better until I either get an agent or publish it myself.

In the meantime, I’m going to write another book and submit that one next year to Pitch Wars. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes!

Candace signing off to go outline her new novel.

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