Just Write For Kids Pitch It! Competition Guidelines


UPDATE: Competition is now CLOSED for entries. Results to be announced at the end of October.

We’re back! The team at Just Write For Kids are very excited to announce our second annual writing competition; Pitch It!


If you’re like most writers, you’re probably itching for the chance to skip the slush pile and get your manuscript directly on the desk of a publishing editor. I’ll bet you also wouldn’t mind your manuscript appraised by a professional assessor. Am I right? Well, believe it or not, now you can have the chance to jump ahead of the rest simply by writing a knock-out pitch!


Here’s what you need to know to enter…



September 1, 2019



September 30, 2019



This year, we have created three separate categories to cater for your specific writing preferences. You will have the chance to enter into any or all of the following:

a) Picture Book Category (PB)

b) Junior Fiction / Middle-Grade Category (JF/MG)

c) Young Adult Category (YA)



All writers within Australia, published or unpublished in the children’s book industry.

Each entry will be based on the pitch of an unpublished manuscript. That is, the manuscript you are pitching for is NOT already published.




ONE winner from EACH CATEGORY (PB, JF/MG and YA) will have their pitch and accompanying manuscript forwarded to either Commissioning Editor/Publisher of Big Sky Publishing, or Publishing Partners of Little Pink Dog Books, Kathy and Peter Creamer, or Commissioning Editor/Publicist of Wombat Books, Emily Lighezzolo for a publisher appraisal and edit.




Runners Up:

ONE runner up from EACH CATEGORY (PB, JF/MG and YA) will receive a manuscript critique / assessment from either Mentoring Coach/ Author/ Professional Copywriter, Kellie Byrnes (picture books only) or Professional Editor/ Award-Winning Author, Sally Odgers of Affordable Manuscript Assessments and Editing Services.



*Entries that do not follow the specific guidelines outlined will be compromised.

Write a pitch for a children’s manuscript to a publisher. Be creative! Provide a hook. We are looking for pitches that jump off the page and excite us. Make us want to know more!


IMPORTANT: Please follow these specific guidelines:

  • Word count must be between 100 and 150 words.
  • Entries must be typed, set to Times New Roman font, size 12 point.
  • Entries must be in English.
  • The pitch is written for either a picture book, chapter book (JF or MG), or young adult manuscript.
  • The pitch must include (and are included in the pitch word count):

– manuscript title

– manuscript word count

– specific genre (PB, JF, MG, YA)

– target market

– your hook / blurb

– comparative title/s

  • DO NOT include author biographies or identifying details.
  • Your name DOES NOT appear on the pitch entry.



  • Multiple entries are accepted. Please Note: We are only accepting a maximum of TWO (2) entries PER CATEGORY. A third entry, and thereafter, in the same category will be withdrawn.
  • You CAN enter up to 2 entries for Picture Books AND 2 entries for Junior Fiction/Middle Grade AND 2 entries for Young Adult.
  • Each entry must be submitted with separate entry emails and payment.
  • Submissions are to be emailed to jwfkcompetition (AT) gmail (DOT) com:

In the Subject Line:

JWFK Pitch It Competition Entry_(Your Name)_(Your Category)


In the Body of the Email:

Your Name

Your Manuscript Title

Your Phone Number



  1. Pitch Entry document as .doc or .docx saved with manuscript title (NO name).
  2. Proof of payment (screenshot image)


Payment and Receipt:

  • Payment of $7.50 per entry (including transaction fee) is payable at the time of submission to paypal.me/justkidslit.
  • All entries will receive acknowledgement upon receipt via email within 24 hours. Incomplete entries will receive a second chance via email to complete within 24 hours, thereafter will be disqualified.
  • By entering this competition, you agree to the terms and conditions listed in these guidelines.



This year, we are providing feedback to each of the three SHORTLISTS ONLY. We cannot provide feedback for other entries.

Please see below links for help with writing a strong pitch.



Entries will be judged by the following industry professionals:


Picture Book Category:

Award-winning author, Debra Tidball

Author, mentoring coach and professional copywriter, Kellie Byrnes


Junior Fiction / Middle Grade Category:

Author and Middle Grade Mavens podcaster, Julie Anne Grasso

Author, copywriter and Middle Grade Mavens podcaster, Pamela Ueckerman


Young Adult Category:

Award-winning author, Kate Gordon

Award-winning author, Nadia L King


Judges’ decisions are final and no further correspondence will be entered into.



The winners will be announced on the Just Write For Kids website and social media pages by early November 2019 (TBC).



Please contact us at jwfkcompetition (AT) gmail (DOT) com with any questions.



The winning entries are not guaranteed publication by Big Sky Publishing (PB, JF/MG, YA), Little Pink Dog Books (PB only) or Wombat Books (PB only). Completed manuscripts must be ready for submissions upon announcement of competition winners and runners up. It is up to the discretion of the participating publishers and assessors to return feedback in their own time – please be patient in receiving replies. All entries will be discarded after competition close.




6 thoughts to “Pitch It! Competition 2019

  • Norah

    What a great competition. I’ll have to work on my pitching. 🙂

  • Norah

    What a great competition. I’ll have to work on my pitching skills.

    • Just Write For Kids

      You’ll be great! Thanks for your interest in the competition! 🙂

      • Norah

        Thanks for your encouragement, Romi. 🙂

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