Several success stories came out of 2013’s Pitcharama. Here’s one from Jaret Martens author of YA thriller, Eating Sarah.
Tell us about your story.
Eating Sarah is a coming-of-age story about a young girl named Sarah who lives with a woodland community. She also just so happens to be a cannibal. The story kicks off on the night of the Hunt: a monthly ritual in which Sarah and her people go into the nearby city and gather prisoners to sustain them for the next month. Only this time, the age-limit has been lowered and Sarah is forced to participate.
Things go horribly wrong, people are killed, and, to protect her, Sarah’s parents force her to work in a building called the slaughter shack. It is here that she meets Troy: a man she knows she will be forced to kill. And yet, he doesn’t seem half the monster she’s been led to believe he is. As they grow closer, Sarah begins to doubt her way of life, forcing her to choose between murder or exile.
Yet, leaving is not so simple. To escape would be to dishonor the family name and, in turn, cause their deaths. In addition, rumors of mutiny are arising around the colony, putting everyone on edge. And then there are the bodies–the ones that are unmistakably their own, complete with missing limbs and markings that oddly look like bite marks.
Boundaries are pushed, allegiances broken, and the very question of what it means to be human is called into play.
You entered Pitcharama last year; how did you find the whole experience?
Pitcharama was an amazing experience. I had grown fatigued by the whole query-wait-get rejected cycle, and desperately needed something to reinvigorate my desire to get my book out there. Pitcharama gave me that outlet. It’s essentially a way of skipping the slush-piles and interacting directly with potential publishers.
After making it through the initial screening process, I worked closely with Stacey Nash to polish the blurb I’d written for Eating Sarah. It was an incredible process, and she was infinitely helpful in identifying the strengths and weaknesses in my pitch. I would go so far as to say that she is the reason my book was even noticed among the rest of the entries.
It might sound cliche’, but Pitcharama was life-changing. I had been close to shelving my book and moving on, but this contest brought everything into perspective. It made me realize that there are people in the publishing industry who view books as more than just a business. It gave me hope, which, as any new author knows, is the most valuable thing there is.
This competition led you to some success; tell us your publishing happily ever after!
Pitcharama is the very reason for any success I’ve had. It was this contest that had two different publishing houses ask for the first few chapters of my book, followed by requests for the full thing, and, ultimately, my signing with Immortal Ink Publishing. It’s been an amazing journey, and I hope that Pitcharama can help another group of writers find success.
Now, for the details: WHEN AND WHERE CAN WE BUY YOUR BOOK?
Eating Sarah will be available through Immortal Ink Publishing later this year. There’s no date set in concrete just yet, but we should have one set soon.
And if you want to have a chance at being next year’s success story, make sure you enter your pitch into this year’s Pitcharama here. Closes June 18.