Pitch Madness

Mar 16, 2024

Online event

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SOLD OUT. Contact carolinas-ra@scbwi.org if you'd like to be added to a waitlist.

Pitch Madness Roundtable #1: PB, MG, YA, GN

Join roundtable #1 with literary agent Erin Casey Westin of Gallt and Zacker. Each participant will have up to 3 minutes to pitch and up to 2 minutes to receive feedback. If your project piques Erin's interest, she may request it. Limited to 12 participants.

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Erin Casey Westin, Gallt and Zacker Literary

Erin was born and raised in New Jersey but now lives in Minneapolis, MN. She studied Creative Writing at Hamilton College where she also played DIII volleyball and club ultimate frisbee. After graduation, she joined Gallt and Zacker Literary agency and is now an associate agent. Erin is open to all kid lit age groups, from picture books through YA, and is particularly drawn to work that shows the author’s world- and character-building ability. She also wants to see authentic, thoughtful representations of all people so that every kid can find a book that speaks to them.

Pitch Madness Roundtable #2: PB, MG, YA, GN

Join roundtable #2 with associate editor Caitlin Johnson of Balzer + Bray. Each participant will have up to 3 minutes to pitch and up to 2 minutes to receive feedback. If your project piques Caitlin's interest, she may request it. Limited to 12 participants.

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Caitlin Johnson, HarperCollins

Caitlin Johnson is an Assistant Editor at Balzer + Bray*. (You may recognize her from the Carolinas 2022 Fall Conference.) She’s had the pleasure of working on titles by Stacey Abrams, Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam, Sonora Reyes, Maulik Pancholy, B.B. Alston, Jasmine Warga, and Julie Murphy, among others, and she oversees the backlist publishing program for the bestselling Big Nate series. Her favorite stories are layered, voice-driven contemporary and fantasy narratives that authentically center diverse, intersectional perspectives. She is looking to acquire young adult, middle grade, and picture book fiction of all stripes, as well as selective nonfiction and graphic novels. *Once B+B moves to Macmillan this spring, Caitlin will remain at HarperCollins and move under the Harper group. Pitches for this event will fall under the Harper flagship imprint.

What makes a strong pitch?

Elevator pitches are 2-3 minutes in length and include a brief bio. **Artwork will not be shown.**


  • For tips and advice, check out literary agent Kaitlyn Leann Sanchez's blog and Mary Kole's Kidlit blog.
  • If something in your bio correlates to the story, include it. For example, if your book is Ratatouille and you are a professional chef (or a professional rat), mention that.
  • Practice presenting your pitch, keeping it to 2-3 minutes to save time for feedback.

Please review the policies for this event.

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Hosted by SCBWI Carolinas