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Pitch Wars Showcase

Please note: These are the entries for the Pitch Wars season beginning in 2021 and continuing through 2022. Please note that our Agent Showcase ends at 9:00 p.m. ET on Monday, February 14, 2022. Agents will not be able to leave comments requesting material after that time.
PW2019 YA #41: I GUESS I LIVE HERE NOW (Contemporary – Korean #OwnVoices)
Claire Sunghyun Ahn
Mentored by:
Rachel Lynn Solomon and Kelsey Rodkey
Book Title:
2019 Entries
Contemporary (Korean #OwnVoices)
Word Count:


Melody is Korean-American, not Korean-Korean—she doesn’t even speak the language. When her parents transplant her to Seoul during her junior year, she’s stunned by the lavish lifestyle they’ve kept hidden from her, one that includes a five-bedroom villa and arranged dates with rich classmates. As she uncovers other secrets, she must confront what she thought she knew about her family to make this new city feel like home.



New Yorkers throw things away too easily. Inside our clubhouse, I’m painting patterns on a wooden stool I snagged from 44th and 8th, wiping away sweat every few seconds so it doesn’t drip onto the wet paint. The clubhouse is really just a walk-in closet inside a condemned building covered with vines and sometimes bugs—harmless ones, hopefully. I’m determined to finish the stool before junior year starts next week and sneaking away becomes harder, especially if I want to stay the top student.  

Sophia looks at me from the floor, where she has her legs propped against the wall and her curly black hair tied up in a bun. “Wait, tell me again why you’re so suspicious of your mom.” 

“She talks to my dad maybe once a month,” I say. “If that. These past two weeks, she’s been on the phone with him almost every day. And she always closes her door.” 

“I think I’m more impressed they can talk that often from opposite ends of the world.” 

Maybe it’s weird to other people, but I’ve never known another living situation. My appa lives in Seoul, and while I’ve never been, he visits us exactly twice a year—no more, no less. To me, Korea is what I see on TV during my mom’s K-drama marathons: boys with over-the-top romantic gestures and girls who never sweat no matter how fast they run.

48 responses to “PW2019 YA #41: I GUESS I LIVE HERE NOW (Contemporary – Korean #OwnVoices)”

  1. Saba Sulaiman says:

    Hi Claire,
    This concept is super close to my heart + your writing is so great — I’d love to read more! Please send a query, synopsis, and the first fifty pages (Word documents will suffice) to ssulaiman@talcottnotch.net — and don’t forget to mention #PitchWars in your subject line. Thanks—looking forward to my read!
    Good luck,

  2. Tara Gilbert says:

    I love this! Please use the link below to submit the full along with a synopsis and query letter.

    Thank you for considering me! If more than one Corvisiero agent shows interest, please choose one of us submit to and let them know who else liked the pitch, so that we can share it with each other.


  3. Kim Lionetti says:

    Hi Claire — Finally! I’m so excited! I’ve been thinking about this one a lot! Can’t wait to read it. Please upload the full manuscript and synopsis here: QueryMe.online/KimLionetti/PitchWars. – Kim

  4. Jim McCarthy says:

    I’d love to have a look! Kindly send the manuscript to me at jmccarthy@dystel.com. Good luck, and have fun!


  5. I really like the writing and the voice here, and I’d love to read more. If you could please send your query, full manuscript and a complete, detailed synopsis to hilaryquery@ktliterary.com with “Pitchwars: Your Title” in the subject field. Can’t wait to dive in!

  6. Sarah Landis says:

    I’d love to read the full manuscript! Please do email it to slandis@sll.com. Thanks!

  7. Hannah VanVels says:

    This sounds great, and I’d love to take a look at a partial. Please upload the first 50 pages to: QueryMe.online/MarisaCorvisiero/PitchWars


  8. Tara Gonzalez says:

    Hi Claire,

    I would absolutely love to read this – will you send me your query and first 20 pages to tara@emliterary.com at your convenience, and mention Pitch Wars in the subject? There’s no timeline on my end, just whenever you feel ready!

    Thanks so much!

    Tara Gonzalez
    Associate Agent
    Erin Murphy Literary Agency

  9. Elana Roth Parker says:

    Hi! I’d love to read more! Please email me at eparker [at] ldlainc [dot] com:

    * Subject line: PitchWars Submission: YOUR BOOK TITLE
    * Your query letter in the body of the email
    * The full manuscript attached as a Word document

    If more than one LDLA agent requests your book, you are welcome to send to as many or few of us as you like. Just tell us in the query, and we’ll chat amongst ourselves.

    Elana Roth Parker
    Laura Dail Literary Agency

  10. Melissa Edwards says:

    Hi Claire,
    I’m intrigued. I’d love to take a look! Please send the ms as a doc to medwards at stonesong dot com. Thanks!!

    All best,

  11. Hi, Claire

    I’m intrigued! Can you send me the full and a synopsis (2-4 pages)? Please use Times New Roman, size 12, black, double-spaced text, 1” margins all around, and ½” paragraph indents. Paste your pitch in the body of the email and attach the manuscript and synopsis as two separate Word documents (docx). Sent to: lynnette (at) theseymouragency (dot) com and add “Pitch Wars Request” along with your title in the subject line. Thanks.

    If more than one agent from The Seymour Agency likes your entry, please send requested material to the agent you feel will be the best fit. #OneAgentAtATime

    Looking forward to reading more.




    Melody is charming! I’d love to read more. Please put ‘Pitch Wars Requested’ in your subject line and send the full manuscript and query letter to me at rebecca@defliterary.com. Ms can be an attachment. Thanks so much!

  13. Alice Sutherland-Hawes says:

    Hello! I would absolutely love to see this. It sounds wonderful and exactly what I’m looking for! Could you send three chapters and a synopsis to childrens@madeleinemilburn.com FAO Alice and put PitchWars in the subject line?

    Best of luck!


  14. Amy Elizabeth Bishop says:

    Dear Claire,

    This sounds so amazing. I’d love to read more – could you send along your query and full manuscript as a Microsoft Word attachment, with #PitchWars in the subject line, to abishop (at) dystel (dot) com?

    I look forward to reading!

    All best,


  15. Erica Bauman says:

    Hi Claire,

    This sounds fantastic, and I’d love to read more! Could you please send a query and the full manuscript to ebauman@aevitascreative.com, and put “Pitch Wars” in the subject line?

    Looking forward!

    All best,

  16. Peter Knapp says:

    Hi Claire,

    This sounds great – I’d love to keep reading! Can you please send the full manuscript to queries@parkfine.com attached as a Word document, along with a 1-3 (or so) page synopsis if available (in the same document as the MS or attached as a separate doc is fine)? Please include a query letter in the body of the email and put “PitchWars Submission – Pete Knapp” in the subject of the email. Thanks so much for the opportunity, and I look forward to reading!

    With warm regards,

    Pete Knapp
    Park & Fine Literary and Media

  17. Jennifer Unter says:

    This sounds fantastic – I’d love to read more! Please forward the first 50 pages to jen.nadol(at)theunteragency(dot)com with PW Request in the subject line. Thanks!

  18. Ashley Blake says:

    Hi Claire, this sounds great!! I’d love to take a look. If you’d like, send the full manuscript to ashley@reesagency.com and put QUERY PITCH WARS in the subject line. Hope to hear from you soon!

  19. Hillary Jacobson says:

    Hi Claire,

    I would love to read more! Please send the full manuscript as a word document to hjacobson@icmpartners.com

    Thank you!

    My best,

  20. Marlo Berliner says:

    Interesting! I’d love to read more! Please send the full with Pitchwars YA in the subject line to marlo.jdlit@gmail.com. Looking forward to reading!

  21. Sabrina Taitz says:

    I LOVE this. Please send your full manuscript to staitz@wmeagency.com – thank you! xx Sabrina Taitz @ WME

  22. Samantha Wekstein says:

    I’d love to see your first fifty pages! If interested, please send them as an attachment to Samantha@thompsonliterary.com with your query in the body and #pitchwars in the subject. Thank you!

  23. Jess Dallow says:

    Hi Claire,

    I love what I’ve read so far and would love to see more! Please send the full manuscript and query to me at jess@browerliterary.com with PITCH WARS + title in the subject line.

    Thanks and I can’t wait to read!


    Jess Dallow, Brower Literary and Management

  24. Carrie Pestritto says:

    AHH!!! This entry immediately caught my eye—I always want more Korean MCs in books and a YA version of CRAZY RICH ASIANS has been on my #MSWL for ages, so I’m definitely interested in reading more!

    Would you please send me your query in the body of an email, with the first 100 pages attached as a Word doc? The subject of the email should be “PITCH WARS REQUEST: I GUESS I LIVE HERE NOW” and you can reach me at cpestritto(at)ldlainc(dot)com.

    Thanks and looking forward to hearing from you!

  25. John Cusick says:

    I’d love to see more of this! Could you please send your query and first three chapters to john [@] foliolit.com? Looking forward to reading.

  26. Penny Moore says:

    Hi Claire,

    This sounds so good and is exactly in my wheelhouse. I’d love to read more! Please follow the directions on my query form and submit your MS here: QueryMe.online/LiteraryPenny/PitchWars2020. Thanks!

    All the Best,
    Penny Moore

  27. Bridget Smith says:

    I’d love to take a look! Please send the query (in the body) and the full manuscript (as an attachment) to querybridget@awfulagent.com, with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. Can’t wait to read!

  28. Lauren Spieller says:

    What a great opening. I’d love to keep reading. May I please see the full manuscript + synopsis? It would also be great if you could include ‘Pitch Wars Request’ in the subject line. I look forward to hearing from you! 

    Lauren Spieller, TriadaUS Literary Agency

  29. Laura Bradford says:

    Ooooh, I love the hook. I totally want to know more about this secret life in Seoul!

    Please email me the full ms + synopsis and make a note in the subject line that this is a Pitch Wars entry. laura at bradfordlit dot com. Can’t wait to see more!

    Laura Bradford
    Bradford Literary Agency

  30. Anya Goncharova says:

    Dear Claire,

    It is a huge pleasure to read your pitch and excerpt, and I must say, I am so excited to read more.

    My name is Anya, and I am an agent working with Peony Literary Agency. We represent authors all over the world, and I in particular always look for amazing new female authors in English and in translation.

    Your authoritative voice, your beautiful language, and the story you tell are all so fascinating and I would really love to read the rest of your manuscript. If you are also interested in me looking at it, would you mind please passing it on to me via email, at anya@peonyliteraryagency.com?

    I really hope to hear from you and I am wishing you all the very best with your work as well, it deserves to be read and re-read!

    All my best,

  31. Rena Rossner says:

    Hi Claire!

    I’d love to read this full manuscript! Please send it attached as a word document to: rena@thedeborahharrisagency.com

    Excited to read!

    – Rena Rossner

  32. Hi Claire,
    This sounds amazing! I would love to to read the full manuscript. Please send the full to QueryMe.online/Stacey_PITCHWARS/PitchWars2020. Add #PitchWars to the submission form.

    Looking forward to reading your story ❤️


  33. Andrea Morrison says:

    Dear Claire,
    I hope this finds you well! It was so nice to read your Pitch Wars blog post, as well as your concept and this sample – I’d LOVE the chance to read your full manuscript! If you’re interested in sharing, could you send I GUESS I LIVE HERE NOW to me at amorrison@writershouse.com?
    I really hope to hear from you!
    My best,

  34. Jessica Craig says:

    Hi, I’m fascinated with Korea and like your pitch and excerpt and I would love to receive your complete manuscript. Please send with PitchWars + title + your name in the subject heading to submissions@craigliterary.com

  35. Hi Ann,

    I GUESS I LIVE HERE NOW sounds so good! I’ve specifically been looking for more global YA, and I love a book about family and belonging. If you think we’d be a good fit (you can find more about me and my tastes here: https://www.jdlit.com/savannah-brooks and here: https://www.manuscriptwishlist.com/mswl-post/savannah-brooks/), head to http://queryme.online/1346 to submit more info and a 20-page sample. Be sure to put Pitch Wars 2020 in the referral section or as part of the title (ex: I GUESS I LIVE HERE NOW: Pitch Wars 2020).

    I’m looking forward to reading more!


  36. Zabé Ellor says:

    I love the voice and atmosphere you’ve captured here, and I can’t wait to see more. Please send the query and synopsis (in the body of an email), and full manuscript (as an attachment) to zrellor . books @ gmail . com. I’m looking forward to diving in

  37. Colleen Oefelein says:

    Hi Claire,

    I’d love to read the full! Please email me directly at colleen@adventurewrite.com. Paste your query and synopsis directly into the body and attach your full. Thanks and looking forward to reading!

    Colleen Oefelein
    Associate Agent
    The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency
    245 Park Avenue
    39th Floor
    New York NY 10167
    Facebook: Colleen Oefelein
    Twitter: @eerie_o

    Celebrating 19 years of making dreams come true!

  38. Alexandra Weiss says:

    Hi Claire! This sounds so great and I’d love to read more. Please send the first 50 pages to me at http://queryme.online/AlexandraWeiss/PitchWars2019.

    Thanks so much!
    Alexandra Weiss
    The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency

  39. Kari Sutherland says:

    I love stories of uprooted characters finding a new path, so this sounds right up my alley! Please query me with “Pitch Wars” in the title here: https://querymanager.com/query/Kari_Sutherland_Query_Form
    Looking forward to reading more!

  40. Cindy Uh says:

    Dear Claire,

    I can’t wait to see Melody in Seoul! I’d love to read on if you’d like to send a full manuscript to cindy.uh@caa.com.


  41. Whitney Ross says:

    Hi Claire, I’m intrigued by your pitch! Please do send me the full manuscript and a detailed synopsis. Our submission guidelines can be found here: https://www.irenegoodman.com/submissions

  42. Heather Cashman says:

    Hi, Claire. I would love to keep reading! You have a great voice and I’m already so drawn in. If you think we’d be a good fit, please query me at http://QueryMe.Online/HeatherCashman with Pitch Wars in the referral line, and I’ll respond soon with a full request so you can upload the file. Thanks!

  43. Chelsea Eberly says:

    I love the class dynamics here and the voice in this excerpt. I hope you will send me the full manuscript with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line to: submissions (at) greenhouseliterary (dot) com. Thank you!

  44. Em Lysaght says:

    This sounds fantastic, I would love to read more. Please submit your first three chapters, synopsis, and query letter (and remind me of your Pitchwars pitch in the query) at this link: http://queryme.online/emlysaght

  45. Love this! Please send this pitch in the body of an email, synopsis and first fifty pages attached as a Word doc, with YA PITCHWARS and your title in the subject, to Jennifer@theseymouragency.com.

  46. Erin Harris says:

    Hi Claire,
    Thank you for participating in Pitch Wars! I LOVE the writing and the premise here. Please send the full manuscript to eharris@foliolit.com, along with your full query letter (description of project + author bio) with “Pitch Wars” in the subject of your email.

    I look forward to reading and talking further!

    All best,

    Folio Literary Management |Harold Ober Associates |Folio Jr.
    630 9th Avenue, Suite 1101, New York, NY 10036
    212-400-1494 x350 | eharris@foliolit.com | FolioLit.com

  47. Kristin Nelson says:

    What a lovely opening! I’d be delighted to take a look at your full manuscript. I’ve created a special Pitch Wars link so you can send the manuscript my way.

    Query Manager Event Link

    Pls also include your query letter as the first page of your full manuscript to help orient me when I dive in for the longer read starting on the 11th.

    It’s also okay to send to more than one agent at NLA if you have received multiple requests. We’ll coordinate on our end.

    Congrats on being a part of Pitch Wars. I can’t wait to read.

  48. Kerstin Wolf says:

    Making a place feel like a home isn’t always an easy feat. I think your pitch is spot on, and I’d love the opportunity to read the full manuscript. If you think we might be a good match, please submit your full manuscript using this link: QueryMe.online/kerstinwolf/Pitch_Wars