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‘America’s Next Great Author’ Competition Films Pilot

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From Publishers Weekly: Seventy-five emerging authors from across the nation turned out to tape the pilot episode for reality competition show America’s Next Great Author, hosted by Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander.

Seventy-five emerging authors from around the country gathered on October 30 and 31 in Newark, N.J., to tape the pilot for a reality show called America’s Next Great Author. The brainchild of Arielle Eckstut and David Sterry (authors and co-founders of the longstanding pitch contest Pitchapalooza), along with Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander and NaNoWriMo founder and executive director Grant Faulkner, the event included workshops, critiques, and a pitch performance by the prospective authors. Alexander’s aim for the project was to provide opportunities for authors from diverse backgrounds “who aren’t normally given a seat at the table in mainstream publishing” and introduce readers to unique voices.

The producers began putting out calls for pitches in September, requesting that authors submit a 75-second video pitching their stories (novels, both YA and adult, and memoirs were eligible), along with 10 pages of the manuscript, a book blurb, and an author bio. Eckstut and Sterry made “a personal promise” to review every submission; they were impressed with the hundreds of submissions, which came from 49 states and Washington, D.C. Eckstut said they included “something for every section of the bookstore,” including YA rom-coms, thrillers, sci-fi, and a surprising number of “cli-fi” (climate fiction) stories. Sterry provided feedback for all of the semi-finalists and offered a personal consultation to help authors improve their pitches.

Read full post on Publishers Weekly

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