Sunday, September 5, 2010

Mystery Agent Revealed: Mandy Hubbard!!

Mandy Hubbard (pic and bio from her website)

Mandy Hubbard is the author of Prada & Prejudice, You Wish, and five other to-be-published novels for teens. She is also a literary agent for D4EO Literary, where she represents authors of middle grade and teen fiction. She is currently living happily ever after with her husband and young daughter in Enumclaw, Washington. 
To help out queriers, Mandy has answered a couple brief questions:

What are you dying to see in queries right now?

I would love something that is hysterically funny-- YA or MG, I don't care. Make me laugh and I'm yours. Other wants: Something literary a la John Green or Sarah Dessen. A scandalous historical a la THE LUXE.

What's your favorite candy in the world?

Skittles! Nom Nom.

And now onto the results of the September Mystery Agent Pitch Contest... 
(Mandy's remarks are in burgundy)


9. Michele Shaw for Scatter-YA romantic suspense

Living under a false identity to stay hidden from her murderous father is lonely, terrifying, and normal for seventeen-year-old CJ, but when a boy offers her the life she's always wanted, she must choose between shedding her lies to love him and breaking his heart to protect him.

Why I picked it: I love romance, for one, and this clearly has it. But I also love that I get a feel for the character and her internal conflict and I get the hook. Many people focus too much on the hook/concept and don’t inject anything about their characters into their pitch. Michele balanced both beautifully.

(Michele, don't forget to email your full MS to Mandy at and mention you won this contest, though I'm sure she won't forget you.)

Other pitches that intrigued me:

(I’d love to see a full query with five page sample!)
 24. Jenn for Genre: YA Historical Romance

WISTFUL, after her extravagant Ton wedding, 15 year old Julie Haynesworth runs away from her ancient husband to live with a poor commoner family only to fall in love with the eldest son; too bad he thinks she’s a boy.

Told you I love romance!

36. Nancy Ashcraft Herman for Letters to Mary: A Donner Party Story

When 13-year-old Virginia Reed's powerful and arrogant father makes poor decisions that leave the Donner Party trapped in winter snows, she must find the courage to defy him in order to save the rest of her family. 

I’m always curious about books that use real historical figures, and what kinds of insight it might give us. This could be interesting!

46. Andrea Mack for The Ethan project, MG, contemporary

When Molly learns her 6-year-old cousin doesn't talk, she convinces her best friend to join in a project to help, but soon finds that fixing his problems won't fix her own.

I’m intrigued here—why doesn't the 6 year old talk? And what problems of her own does Molly have?

If I didn’t choose your pitch, but you’d like to query me, please do! It’s really  hard to hook a person with a single sentence, so if I didn’t choose your entry it doesn’t mean I’m not interested in seeing a longer pitch. I ask for a query letter and a five page sample. Queries can be sent to


Thanks to Mandy for being our first ever Mystery Agent
Check out her books on goodreads:
To impress the popular girls on a high school trip to London, klutzy Callie buys real Prada heels. But trying them on, she trips…conks her head…and wakes up in the year 1815!

What if all your wishes really came true? 

Ripple (not out yet, eat your heart out)
Eighteen year old Lexi Wentworth is cursed. For as long as she can remember, she’s spent every night swimming. If she doesn’t, she’ll regret it—simply walking will be agony, as if she’s stepping on shattered glass. Her body craves the water, demands the water, until she can’t say no.

And other (longer) interviews:

Mandy also writes at one of my favorite group blogsLET THE WORDS FLOW

Congratulations to the winners! Now get to querying!


Lenny Lee said...

hi miss katrina and miss mandy! hooray for miss michele for getting to be the the winner! that was a cool contest. it was my very first try at a one line pitch and i gotta say it was pretty hard. i went like you said to mr nathans blog and learned lots from it and then wrote it and redid it a zillion times til it sounded pretty good. so for me this was a really good way to learn more good writing stuff. thanks miss katrina for having the contest and thanks miss mandy for being so really nice to do this.
...smiles from lenny

Jessica L. Brooks (coffeelvnmom) said...

Wow. Great mystery agent guys! Thank you, Mandy, for taking the time to do this, and congrats to the *awesome* lucky winners!

Also many thanks to the OA ladies for putting this on. =)

For those of us who didn't get chosen, at least this was a great learning tool. And what does that make us, then, according to yesterday's blog post? It makes us awesome, of course! ;)

Stephanie said...

Very cool!!!! Reading Prada and Prejudice right now!

Michele Shaw said...

Are you even kidding me? I checked to make sure someone else with my name hadn't entered! The other entries were awesome! Huge, huge thanks to everyone at OA and Mandy Hubbard. I am extremely grateful for this unbelievable opportunity!

Jenn said...

Congrats Michele! I wish you and everyone else who submitted the best of luck! I thought everyone's pitches were great! A special thanks to Mandy Hubbard and everyone else at OA for this great opportunity! :)

Amparo Ortiz said...

Congrats, Michele!! And, of course, to the other fabulous contestants who got the requests. Told ya our Mystery Agent was awesome.

For those of you who didn't win this time around, don't fret. More contests are on the way. In the meantime, go pick up Mandy's books and keep writing!

Andrea Mack said...

Wow - this is so exciting! Thank you for the opportunity, Operation Awesome and Mandy Hubbard. Congratulations to Michele and the others who caught Mandy's eye! There were lots of interesting pitches here.

Amie Borst said...

congrats all! thanks mandy! and thanks to the fabulous hosts!

Stina said...

I made a list of my fav pitches and starred three of them as my absolute fav. Yay, Scatter was one of them. :D

Angelica R. Jackson said...

Congrats to the winner! And one of my crit partners, Nancy, got an encouraging mention, yay!

Lindsay said...

Congrats to the winners.

Thank you to everyone who took part. There are more mystery agent's to come. ;)

Andrea Coleman said...

Congrats! You've got a great agent looking at your work. I wish you both good luck in making this project awesome for both of you.


Katrina L. Lantz said...

Congratulations to Michele, Jen, Nancy, and Andrea! And thank you to everybody who participated, especially our fabulous first Mystery Agent, Mandy Hubbard!!

There were so many wonderful pitches to choose from, and one thing this contest taught me was just how subjective this kind of thing really is. Let's just say I saw way more than four winners here. You guys rock!

Hope to see you next time. Meanwhile, enjoy getting to know the other OA ladies. And keep your eyes peeled (ouch, that sounds painful) for more fun features.

Jemi Fraser said...

Congrats to the winners - those are great pitches! Thanks so much to Mandy for doing this!! :)