STATUS: Having a great time in the Big Apple. I’m calling this my “children’s tour.” I’m only meeting with editors for teen and middle grade stuff. So if you write for the adult market. Sorry. You’ll just have to wait for my June trip for Book Expo. Then I’ll be meeting with a variety of editors.
What’s playing on the iPod right now? RADAR LOVE by Golden Earring
Today I was at the Penguin Children’s Group all day. I spoke with many different editors but it’s Karen Chaplin and Jennifer Bonnell who gave me the lowdown for what they wish they had in their acquiring hands right this minute.
Ready? Grab a pen.
1. Paranormal YA that’s not vampires or werewolves.
2. A YA psychological thriller (we couldn’t even come up with comparable examples that’s how unusual it seems to be.)
3. Middle grade mysteries
4. Boy middle grade ANYTHING
Sarah Shumway at Dutton Children’s mentioned that she’s been paying special attention to this:
She’s been receiving great pitches but then when the manuscript comes in, the characters or the writing isn’t developed quite enough so she passes.
She’s receiving manuscripts with good characters and solid writing but there’s not enough of a hook to make it stand out and so she passes.
Penguin Sales reps want to be able to sum it up in one sentence.
I’ve said it before but it’s worth repeating. Never underestimate the importance of high concept for young adult projects.
More tips and inside scoop tomorrow.