Pitch It! Competition WINNERS and RUNNERS UP 2022

Just Write For Kids Australia’s fifth Pitch It! Competition for Australian writers of children’s and young adult books was held throughout September this year. The aim was to craft a manuscript pitch to a publisher that is focused, concise and appealing; showcasing a strength in voice, marketability and writing ability. Our judging panel meticulously analysed each entry for their adherence to the guidelines, but most importantly, their originality, emotive qualities and point of difference. The biggest piece of advice: have a strong, clear opening hook!

Gigantic thanks once again to Debra Tidball, Stef Gemmill, Amelia McInerneyKate Gordon and Crystal Corocher xx

We are also thankful for the generosity of our prize givers for offering such invaluable opportunities for our writers. Thank you: 

Larrikin House

Daisy Lane Publishing

CSIRO Publishing,

EK Books,

Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge

Michelle Worthington Coaching Services, and 

Kate Gordon Assessments.

So, without further ado, Just Write For Kids is thrilled to announce the following winners in the 2022 Pitch It! Competition…

Congratulations to all!

Picture Book Category

Winner:

CelesteKylie Miller

Congratulations, Kylie! The judges commented, “Your use of descriptive emotional language sets the tone of the story beautifully.” “A well structured pitch with a warm hearted, universal theme that takes advantage of the market trend…” “… the story description makes the reader want to know all about…”

You will receive FIRST choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from TWO commissioning editors at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane PublishingCSIRO Publishing, EK Books, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

PLUS FREE one-hour coaching session with international award-winning author and entrepreneur, Michelle Worthington Coaching Services.

Runner Up:

A Hairy HolidayJess Horn

Congratulations, Jess! Your pitch had the judges commenting, “A well set out pitch with the hook front and centre, unique characters and an intriguing twist teaser that made me want to read the full manuscript!” “… an enticing, effective pitch.”

You will receive SECOND choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from a commissioning editor at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane PublishingCSIRO Publishing, EK Books, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

Third Place:

Brand New and 60,000 years oldCarly Foster & Shanai Kellett

Congratulations, Carly and Shanai! The judges noted, “There is a huge gap on the shelves waiting for ‘own voice’ books like this. What I love about the pitch is the creative hook.” “… original idea…” “… an important theme…” 

You will receive THIRD choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from a commissioning editor at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane PublishingCSIRO Publishing, EK Books, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

Fourth Place:

Mysterious MantaJulie Murphy

Congratulations, Julie! The judges commented, “The pitch is effective in promising an engaging text…” “The language used in the opening sentence is active and visually appealing.” “… a clearly considered narrative arc for the story in a smoothly flowing pitch.”

You will receive FOURTH choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from a commissioning editor at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane PublishingCSIRO Publishing, EK Books, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

Honourable Mentions:

Chooks Can’t MeditateMichelle Wilson

Grandma Always EverywhereAlexandra Guest

MEGA!Laura Holloway

Tooth Fairy on StrikeMegan Gim

PLUS! Special Judges’ Mentions – Individual judges’ favourites…

Slug and the Shallow PoolOlivia Coates

Ruby’s Fearsome FangsElizabeth Pulsford

When Dust DancedAlison Ferguson

The Big Green FibRuth McGurk

Congratulations, everyone! Your pitches stood out to the judges as being intriguing, well-crafted with emotion and with great marketing potential.


Junior Fiction / Middle Grade Category

Winner:

The Haunting of Hux HollowEdwina Howard

Congratulations, Edwina! The judges commented, “… this one sounds madcap and strange enough to be a real winner!” “… delivers a snagging hook that sets it apart.”

You will receive FIRST choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from a commissioning editor at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane Publishing, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

PLUS FREE one-hour coaching session with international award-winning author and entrepreneur, Michelle Worthington Coaching Services.

Runner Up:

Chalky and the ParallelsSteve Tyrrell

Congratulations, Steve! Your pitch had the judges commenting, “…this has so much potential…” “This is a STRONG pitch, and gives the sense that the author knows the target reader well and is crafting something fresh and original…”

You will receive SECOND choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from a commissioning editor at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane Publishing, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

Third Place:

Holly Huntley is Definitely Not Going to the Cross Country FinalsRuth McGurk

Congratulations, Ruth! The judges noted, “I absolutely love the environmental angle and the idea of actions having consequences.” “… this story feels very relatable!”

You will receive THIRD choice of manuscript publisher appraisal from a commissioning editor at either 

Larrikin HouseDaisy Lane Publishing, or Wombat Books / Rhiza Edge.

Honourable Mentions:

Ella and the Amazing Frog OrchestraCassy Polimeni

The Exuberant Isabella DabblerAnna Lidstone

The Lost Loot of LimaMelissa Wray

PLUS! Special Judges’ Mentions – Individual judges’ favourites…

Rainbow Bleak’s Family Tree Sandi Parsons

Congratulations to these writers! Your pitches stood out to the judges as being innovative ideas, with great marketing potential.


Young Adult Category

Winner:

The Whisper Tree – Bianca Breen

Congratulations, Bianca! The judges agreed, “I hope to see this come to fruition…”

You will receive a manuscript publisher appraisal from commissioning editor, Jennifer Sharp at  

Daisy Lane Publishing.

PLUS FREE one-hour coaching session with international award-winning author and entrepreneur, Michelle Worthington Coaching Services.

Runner Up:

OstiumHayley Jackson

Congratulations, Hayley! Your pitch had the judges believe your manuscript is, “…on trend for the current upper YA market.”

You will receive a part manuscript critique from award-winning author and mentorKate Gordon.

Honourable Mention:

Secrets in SkyscrapersSuzanne Grantham

Congratulations, Suzanne! The judges noted, “This sounds like it could be an excellent YA sci fi… intriguing!”

Thank you to all the entrants and everyone involved in making our fifth Pitch It! Competition a success. Winning, runners up and honourable mention entrants will be contacted shortly.

X Romi and the Just Write For Kids Team

#pitchitcompetition #pitchit2022 #competitionwinners #competitionforwriters

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