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How I Pitched Laura Bradford’s Portrait of a Sister

Laura Bradford has been a long-time client at BookEnds. She started her career with us publishing category romance, moved on to become a national bestselling author of cozy mysteries and finally realized her dream of writing women’s fiction with today’s release of Portrait of a Sister.

In a new series about the pitches that got us the deals, I want to share with you the pitch letter that lead to an auction and finished in a deal with Esi Sogah at Kensington Publishing for this wonderful book.

As I’ve discussed before, writing a pitch for agents isn’t so different from an author’s query. Our goal is to come up with a blurb enticing enough to grab an editor’s interest and, hopefully, get her to offer in record time. With Laura’s book you’ll see that I had a lot of great information about Laura to include, but ultimately I still needed to work up a strong blurb. You’ll also see that the title we sold the book under is quite different (and definitely weaker than the title the book is being published under.

Bestselling author Laura Bradford first discovered her love for the Amish community while writing her Amish mystery series. It was during that time that she knew this was a world and a life that she wanted to explore further. It’s how she came to write The Choice, a beautifully written women’s fiction featuring an Amish woman forced to come to terms with the choices she’s made.
At age 19, twins Katie and Hannah Beiler were given a choice to be baptized into the Amish community they had been raised in, or leave to live in the outside world as English. For the first time in their lives, the twins separated. Hannah left for a life in New York City while Katie chose to stay home, caring for her family and making plans to marry and settle down.
Now Hannah has returned for their mother’s funeral and Katie is faced with the full-impact of her decision. Feeling alone since her sister’s decision to leave, and now the loss of her mother, Katie’s only reprieve is the artwork she’s forced to hide. Discovery of art with faces or photographs, would bring shame to her and her family, and possible banishment.
Not ready to say goodbye again, Hannah pushes Katie to visit her in New York City, where Katie faces an unexpected challenge. Exploring the life she might have lived had she made another choice, Katie begins to wonder if it’s not too late. New York City is so much more than Katie imagined. Thanks to Hannah, Katie has met a man who pushes her to think and see that a more complicated life can also have a beauty of its own. Even more, Hannah has had Katie’s work placed in a gallery and a sale gives Katie the money she would need to leave the plain world of the Amish behind and make a life at her sister’s side. But would leaving her family and all she’s ever known and love really give her the life she wants?
Laura is the national bestselling author of over 25 books in both mystery and romance.
Congratulations to Laura on today’s release of Portrait of a Sister!

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3 comments

  1. The tag for this book, ‘picture the road not taken,’ is pretty outstanding. It elicits the over-arching question and echoes back to the other title, “The Choice.” I try to come up with these, as I complete the project, a shorter way to encompass the book. Lovely art/visuals too. Thank you for sharing the pitch–good to see the length and efficiency of it. Good luck with this release.

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