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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 YA #47: I FEED HER TO THE BEAST AND THE BEAST IS ME (Contemporary Fantasy with Horror Elements – #BlackVoicesMatter)
Jamison Shea
Mentored by:
Kylie Schachte
Book Title:
Young Adult
Contemporary Fantasy with Horror Elements - #BlackVoicesMatter
Word Count:
Manuscript Content Warning(s):
blood, bones, bodies/corpses, body horror, classism, death/dying, drinking (recreational), murder, torture (non-graphic), racism, ritualistic self-harm, vomit



For years, perfectionist Laure has danced on broken, bloody toes in service to one god: the ballet. But when her chance to take her rightful place among the company’s elite is suddenly uncertain, she calls upon the darkness–bathing in the blood of an eldritch god and seizing a power too wild for Palais Garnier’s gilded stage. 

The ballet has long made monsters out of girls, and this one–the hungriest of them all–may be its undoing.



Handsome Duke Albrecht was taking his sweet time crying over my grave. I paced the wings of the “afterlife,” fighting the urge to gnaw my nails off while he rolled around in his lament—face contorted in anguish, sculpted body stretched taut. 

Blood pounded in my ears, so loud I lost my place in the music. The longer Albrecht drew it out, the more my muscles grew cold and stiff, the louder my panic sang.

What if they forget me? 

What if I fall? Pause too long, or not long enough? Miss my mark? 

What if I bow and nobody claps at all—just endless, oppressive silence forever?

Albrecht plunged his face into the bouquet of plastic lilies laid at my tombstone, milking his finale for all its worth. A scream tried to force its way out of my throat. 

Because this was the great amphitheatre of Palais Garnier, and every second on stage was my chance to be seen, to be noticed. Tonight was our farewell performance to the Ballet Academy of Paris, and the gilded seats were filled with the company’s directors and board members. It was an opportunity—one of our last—to ensnare them. To claim our place in their productions.

A chance to become someone who mattered.

32 responses to “PW2021 YA #47: I FEED HER TO THE BEAST AND THE BEAST IS ME (Contemporary Fantasy with Horror Elements – #BlackVoicesMatter)”

  1. Amanda Rutter says:

    I would love you to submit your Pitch Wars entry to me, using my Query Manager form: QueryManager.com/Amanda_Rutter/PitchWars Please send through the query letter and the full manuscript. If more than one Azantian agent requests materials, please pick the one you feel would fit you best.

  2. Jennifer March Soloway says:

    You had me at the title alone, and then the pitch, “bathed in blood,” sealed the deal for me. As someone who danced from 4-14, six days a week at the end before quitting suddenly because it just wasn’t going to happen, I know both the love and the horror (the mangled toes, the dashed dreams, the competition destroying friendships) of ballet, and I have long wanted a ballet horror book.

    If you think I could be a good fit, please lease query me with the full manuscript: QueryManager.com/JenniferMarchSoloway/PitchWars2022.

    I love a good story and hope to have the chance to read yours!

  3. Rebecca Eskildsen says:

    Hi Jamison,

    Congratulations on completing Pitch Wars! I’m unbelievably excited to read about Laure’s search for power and ballet excellence. I hope you’ll send me your project! If you choose to do so, please send your query letter and the first 75 pages as a PDF to reskildsen@writershouse.com. Please include “Pitch Wars + your title” in the subject line. Please note that Writers House only allows writers to query one agent at a time.

    I look forward to reading further!

    Rebecca Eskildsen

  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. Samantha Wekstein says:

    Hi Jamison,

    This sounds great, and I love your writing style in this opening scene. I’d like to read more! If interested, can you please send your query and first 50 pages to QueryManager.com/SamanthaWekstein/PitchWars? Thank you!

    All the best,

    Samantha Wekstein

  6. Cortney Radocaj says:

    Hi Jamison!

    I love the sound of this and would love to see more. Can you please submit your query, synopsis, and first 30 pages here?


    If another Belcastro agent requests as well, please choose one of us to send to and mention in your query who else has requested; we’ll be sure to pass the submission along to the other agent if it ends up being a pass 🙂

    Looking forward to reading more!

    -Cortney Radocaj, Belcastro Agency

  7. I’d love to read more! You can send your query letter, a synopsis, and the first 3 chapters of your manuscript to me directly at maria@psliterary.com. One document (attached to the email) that contains all three items is preferred. Please include “Pitch Wars” and your manuscript’s title in the subject line of your email. (If another agent at P.S. Literary requests your manuscript, please submit to only one of us.)

  8. Erica Bauman says:

    Hi Jamison,

    Congratulations on completing Pitch Wars! This project sounds AMAZING—ballet and horror are two of my favorite things. I’d love to read more! If you could please send your query and the full manuscript using my Query Manager link: QueryManager.com/EricaBauman/PitchWars

    And if more than one ACM agent requests, feel free to send to both—just let me know who else is reading, so I can coordinate on my end.

    Looking forward to reading more!

    All my best,

  9. Desiree Wilson says:

    Hello! I’d love to read more of this! Would you please send your query letter, synopsis, and full manuscript to me at desiree@thebentagency.com?

  10. Rebecca Podos says:

    YES PLEASE, this sounds amazing!! I would love to see the query and full manuscript through the Pitch Wars event link on my QueryManager: QueryManager.com/BeccaPodos/PitchWars

    Best, Becca

  11. Beth Phelan says:

    Interesting! Would love to read further.

    Please submit your query letter and the full manuscript at this link: QueryManager.com/querybeth/PitchWars. I’d appreciate it if you pasted your query letter as the first page of your manuscript (like a sort of cover sheet), so when I send it to my kindle, I’ll have both!

    If another agent at GZLA requests your work as well, feel free to submit to both of us, but let us know that the other has it too.

  12. Penelope Burns says:

    I’d love to see this! If you’d like, can you send your query and full manuscript to penelope@gelfmanschneider.com with #PitchWars in the subject line? Thanks so much!

    All best,

  13. Hannah Andrade says:

    Hi Jamison! I absolutely LOVE the sound of this! Can you please send the first 100 pages of this to me on my QueryManager (https://QueryManager.com/hannahandrade)? And don’t forget to put PitchWars in the subject line along with your project. I can’t wait to read it!

  14. Katelyn Detweiler says:

    Hi Jamison,

    Such a fantastic pitch! I’d love to read more. Could you please send your query and full manuscript to me at katelyn@jillgrinbergliterary.com with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line? (Please note, if multiple agents from Jill Grinberg Literary Management request your ms, we ask that you only share with one.) Thank you!


  15. Carrie Hannigan says:

    Dear Jamison,

    I would love to read I FEED HER TO THE BEAST AND THE BEAST IS ME! As someone who still has toes clawed from toe shoes, your pitch instantly spoke to me. Please send the full manuscript as a Word attachment to: carrie@hgliterary.com.

    I am looking forward to reading it.

    Best wishes,
    Carrie Hannigan
    HG Literary

  16. Cate Hart says:

    This sounds really intriguing. I’d love to take a look at the full manuscript. Please send along using QueryManager.com/CateHart/REQ

  17. Isabel Kaufman says:

    Here for the dark side of ballet taken to its natural, full-body-horror conclusion! Please send your query letter and the first 5 pages of your manuscript in the body of the email to submissions@foxliterary.com, with ATTN: ISABEL and PITCH WARS in the title of the email. So looking forward to reading more!

  18. Michaela Whatnall says:

    Ooh, this sound delightfully intense, and I’m always on the look-out for stories about performers! I would love the opportunity to consider this project. Please send a query and the first 50 pages as a Word document to me via Query Manager at this link: QueryManager.com/michaelawhatnall/PitchWars2021 If you have any trouble using the link, you’re welcome to email me instead at mwhatnall@dystel.com.

    If you’ve received a request from more than one Dystel, Goderich & Bourret agent, please only submit to the agent here that you feel would be the best fit, and let that agent know about any other requests you received from our agency. Thank you!

  19. Kelly Peterson says:

    Hi Jamison!

    How could I NOT request a horrifying ballet manuscript?! I’ve already lived so much of this myself and feel this horror and love on a deeper level. I love your voice, your content and plot line, and just ALL OF THIS. I’d love to read your full manuscript, if you wouldn’t mind sending it to me. This link will lead you to my Query Manager, where you can upload your query, synopsis, and full manuscript: QueryManager.com/KellyPeterson/PitchWars

    Wishing you the best of luck, and hoping to see your manuscript! =)

    Warm Regards,
    Kelly Peterson
    Rees Literary Agency

  20. Allison Hellegers says:

    Yes please! I love the pitch and the voice is gripping. You can send me a query, full synopsis and 50 pages. Thanks! Good luck! Alli (at) stimolaliterarystudio (dot) com.

  21. Carlisle Webber says:

    I’d like to see this manuscript! Please submit it along with a query letter here: QueryManager.com/Carlisle/PitchWars2022.

    If more than one agent from Fuse Literary requests your work, please choose one of us to submit to.

    Good luck, and I look forward to reading your work.

  22. Laurel Symonds says:

    I’m really intrigued by what I’ve seen so far and would love to read more! Please send the first 25 pages to symondsqueries@thebentagency.com and include “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. If more than one agent from The Bent Agency requests, you’re invited to send to all of us. Just let us know—thanks!

  23. Chelsea Hensley says:

    Hi Jamison! This sounds amazing, I’d love to read more. If you’re interested, you can send the full manuscript, your query, and a complete synopsis to my Query Manager at this link: QueryManager.com/Chelseahensley/PitchWars2021

  24. Lydia Silver says:

    Hi Jamison,

    What an opening line! SO good. I’d love to read more of this – if you’d be interested in being represented by me, please could you send me your full manuscript to my email, along with a cover letter and your synopsis? My address is lydia@darleyanderson.com.

    Thank you – and good luck!


  25. D. Ann Williams says:

    Hi Jamison,
    Congratulations on completing Pitch Wars! Your excerpt is intriguing, and I would love to read more. Please feel free to send me your query, full manuscript, and synopsis (if you have one) to QueryManager.com/DAnnWilliams/PitchWars2022

    Please let us know if you get multiple requests from ECLA agents, and we will coordinate internally if one (or more!) of us falls in love with your manuscript.

    Have a great showcase!
    D. Ann Williams (she/they), Associate Agent, Emerald City Literary Agency

  26. Peter Knapp says:

    This sounds great! I would love to read more. Can you please send the full manuscript attached as a Word document to queries@parkfine.com with “Pete Knapp – Pitch Wars – YA” in the subject of your email? Please include the query letter at the start of your Word document, and if available please also send a short synopsis (but no worries if not readily available). Thanks! I look forward to reading.

    Pete Knapp / Park & Fine Literary and Media

  27. Allison Hellegers says:

    LOVING this voice and pitch! You can send me your query, full synopsis, and and first 50 pages to alli(at)stimolaliterarystudio(dot)com. Thanks, and good luck!

  28. Jamie Vankirk says:

    This sounds great, and I’d love to see more! If you’d like, please send the query and first 50 pages as a word doc to submissions@rnliterary.com with “Pitch Wars” in the subject.

  29. Lee OBrien says:

    Hi Jamison,

    This sounds incredible! I’d love to see the query and full MS at lee.queries@irenegoodman.com, with Pitch Wars in the subject line.

    If more than one IGLA agent requests your work, please only send to one of us at a time—if they pass, you’re welcome to reach out to another!


  30. Chloe Seager says:

    Hi Jamison, I love this! I’m a big horror fan. If you could email the first three chapters and a synopsis to childrens@madeleinemilburn.com I’d love to read more.


  31. Christa Heschke says:

    Hi Jamison!

    This sounds incredible–my assistant and I are hooked! We also greatly admire your mentor, who formerly mentored another horror client of ours, Ann Fraistat. 🙂

    Please send your query, synopsis, and full manuscript via Query Manager at this link: QueryManager.com/christa_heschke/PitchWars2122

    Thank you!
    -Christa Heschke, McIntosh & Otis

  32. Roseanne Wells says:

    Hi Jamison,

    Great title, great premise, great opening! I’d love to take a look. Please submit the full manuscript and a synopsis to querymanager.com/roseannewells/pitchrequest, and I’m excited to keep reading!