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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.
PW2021 Adult #08: BAD REP (Mystery)
Sean Logan
Mentored by:
Peggy Rothschild
Book Title:
Word Count:
Manuscript Content Warning(s):
Murder, discussions of violence, a character is drugged


Shay McGrath may be lousy at small talk and drink too many fancy cocktails, but she’s good at her job as a reputation management consultant. She doesn’t just improve the public image of her clients, she also destroys the reputations of their competition.

When a new assignment leads to her beloved uncle’s murder, she uses her “opposition research” skills to investigate. But to get the final clue, she’ll have to do two things she swore she’d never do again: pull off an elaborate con, and enlist the help of the best conman she’s ever known — the father she hasn’t seen in twenty years.



Shay McGrath could count on about twenty-five percent of the words coming out of her brother’s mouth to be some form of bullshit. It was difficult to tell which twenty-five percent it was, but she always knew it was in there, mingling with the truth like a skillful party crasher. It’s part of what made him adept at talking with clients, and why he’d take the lead at their prospect meeting.

Shay would be there in a supportive capacity to outline their services. She preferred the research side of the business, uncovering the uncomfortable facts, knowing where the bodies were buried — not necessarily just a figure of speech.

In contrast to her brother, she liked to think of herself as refreshingly straightforward and honest. Of course, she might just be bullshitting herself. No one seemed to be knocking down her door to tell her how refreshing she was.

They arrived at the cream marble lobby of the Tyce-Sparrow offices at precisely noon. The temperature inside was dipping into the subarctic range. Outside the glass walls, the heat was enough to render the fat on a chicken thigh, but now Shay was wishing she’d brought a sweater.

11 responses to “PW2021 Adult #08: BAD REP (Mystery)”

  1. Michelle Hauck says:

    A good mystery is my comfort read! This one sounds amazing. If you choose to submit to me (hopefully), please upload your query, synopsis, bio, and full manuscript using this form: QueryManager.com/2011/PitchWars If another agent from Storm Literary Agency requests, you may submit to all of us simultaneously. Best,

    Michelle Hauck

  2. Paige Wheeler says:

    This sounds amazing. I’d love to take a look at more of your work. Please email me the synopsis and first 100 pages (as word attachments) to me at paige@cmalit.com. Please write “Pitch Wars: Requested Material” in the subject heading. Thanks so much!

  3. Elizabeth Bewley says:

    Love this first line! I’d be happy to receive your query + the full manuscript, as a Word doc attachment. Please email me at ebewley@sll.com. Please mention Pitch Wars in your subject line. Thanks! Elizabeth

  4. Lauren Spieller says:

    Congratulations on completing Pitch Wars! I’d love to read more. Please send your query + full manuscript + synopsis to Lauren@triadaus.com, and put “PW Request” in the subject line. I look forward to hearing from you! ~Lauren Spieller

  5. Lori Galvin says:

    Dear Sean,
    Thank you for sharing your work. I would love to see the full. Could you please send to lgalvin@aevitascreative.com with Pitchwars in the subject line. Please feel free to submit to other ACM agents who request. Thank you so much.

  6. Jill Marr says:

    This is giving me a GOLIATH (which I loved) vibe.
    Please send the first 50 pages of your manuscript in Word (with the subject YOUR TITLE: #PW2021 Showcase) to jill@dijkstraagency.com.
    I’m looking forward to reading more!

  7. Jen Nadol says:

    Hi Sean,
    I’m intrigued and would like to read more. If you think we’d be a fit, please send a query & first 50 pages as a Word attachment to jen.nadol@theunteragency.com

  8. Dani Segelbaum says:

    I would love to read! Please send your query and first 50 pages to dani@carolmannagency.com.

  9. Sandy Lu says:

    Hi Sean,

    I’m intrigue! Please send the full manuscript, preceded by your bio and complete synopsis (all in one Word document) to https://querymanager.com/SandyLu/Requested_Materials

    I look forward to reading more!

    Sandy Lu
    Book Wyrm Literary Agency

  10. Laura Bradford says:

    I LOVE con artist stories and this one sound so good! Your opening line excellent and punchy and really pulls me in–I’d love to see more! Please send me the full manuscript and synopsis (as attachments) at laura@bradfordlit.com. Please put Pitch Wars in your subject line.

    Can’t wait!
    Laura Bradford

    ***If you receive a request from more than one agent at Bradford Literary Agency, you are welcome to send to all agents who made the request, but just let us know when you send the material***

  11. I’d like to see more— please send query letter, full manuscript, author bio, and synopsis to EWRquery@mcintoshandotis.com. Please attach all materials as Word documents, and include “Pitch Wars” in subject line. Thanks!