Below is my submission for Heather Webb’s “How To Pitch Like a Rock Star” Workshop & Contest. Despite the fact that I’m literally on Day 5 of writing my novel via NaNoWriMo, I’m ready to pitch this ishmail.
My pitch is about as rough as the first 13,000 words I’ve gotten down so far. I’m looking forward to everyone’s constructive criticisms – please be blunt!
A 14 year-old loses her mother, her school, her friends and her ice hockey team in just one summer. Forced to move to a small town with a distant father and his stranger of a girlfriend, Shae Mackenna must either fight for a spot on an all-boys’ team or give up on the game she loves. Can Shae convince the doubters that she really belongs?
Taking in the feedback I’ve been given so far, here is my second stab at my pitch:
Fourteen-year-old Shae Mackenna loses her mother, her school, her friends and her ice hockey team in one summer. When Shae moves to a small town to live with her cold and disapproving father, she seeks out the one thing that has always given her solace–hockey. But Shae discovers it’s an all-boys’ team, and must decide whether she can defy the naysers all around her, including her father and her new best friend Josh, or fight for her place in the game she loves.
I’m struggling to find a good way to explain the conflict of both of these relationships: the protagonist’s father, who disapproves of everything about Shae playing hockey, and the new classmate who befriends Shae (Josh). Josh actually works at the hockey arena/recreational facility, but dislikes sports and really hates hockey. Not only is there a racial/cultural element, in that Josh is black and there’s an underlying tension with the largely white and redneck hockey climate, he’s also jealous of all the other boys Shae hangs out with because he develops a crush on her. Shae’s pretty oblivious to the potential romantic aspect of their relationship until the very end of the book.
Any help on how to get that all embodied in that third sentence of the pitch, or maybe there’s a way I can get the second sentence including aspects of Shae’s relationship with Josh?
My final pitch:
Fourteen-year-old Shae Mackenna loses her mother, her school, her friends and her ice hockey team in one summer. When Shae moves to a small town to live with her distant father and struggles to fit in and make new friends, she seeks out the one thing that has always given her solace — hockey. But Shae discovers her only chance to play is on an all-boys’ team and must decide whether she will give in to the pressure to blend in to the crowd or take on all the doubters and fight for a place in the game she loves.