Blogfest Category Archive

Pitch P- Jane Austen is my BFF

Jane Austen Is My BFF
YA Contemporary
63,000

Query:

Sixteen-year old Liza Johnson is taking her fangirl status to a whole new level of crazy when she decides to take dating advice from her hero: Jane Austen.

Liza’s usually not so obsessed with casting her Mr. Darcy in real life, but all that changes in sophomore year when, with the help of her best friend, she sheds her ancient speak and complete Austen wardrobe. Now there’s the new kid, Will, who Liza thinks must be Darcy incarnate, and her BFF’s ex who decides to pop into the picture again after she accidentally broke them up a few months back. Add to that the sexy British boy who kisses with an accent, and oh yeah, she’s in trouble.

Since her mom died when she was eight, Liza can’t really go ask her for relationship advice and all she has left that might help is her mother’s copy of the Completed Works of Jane Austen. It’s too bad Austen’s heroines have no idea what Spin the Bottle is and think ‘Be courageous’ is acceptable advice in modern day high school. Liza only wants her true Austen-esque happy ending, but if she can’t trust herself instead of books, she just might end up in social siberia forever.

First 150 words:

The phone rang again at night and I immediately thought of Janie. Janie and the only news she would call in the middle of the night to give. My heart popped up through my throat, catching on a breath. When my eyes flew open, she was there, next to me. Her face still red and covered in dried, crusty tears.

I fumbled for the cordless.

“Liza, it’s me. I’m…” he hesitated, probably waiting to hear if I’d say Who?, or maybe, Which one? “I’m outside your house. Meet me downstairs?”

“Right now?” I shouted more than I’d meant to, my head still pulsating in alarm, and a soft groan escaped Janie’s lips. I took a deep breath. “It’s like, eleven,” I whispered, more calm now.

“Yeah, I’m out in my car. I need to see you.”

Janie murmured and shifted as I got out of bed. I knew I’d have to fight her for a spot when I got back.

Pitch O- Gripped

GRIPPED
YA Contemporary (Edgy)
58,000

Query:

When seventeen-year-old Taylor is dumped by her hottie boyfriend at the beginning of senior year, she turns to her best friends to help her through the heartache. Her liquid BFFs.

Taylor’s an alcoholic.

Unable to cope, she shows up at school drunk, nearly throwing up on the vice principal. Alcohol becomes a crutch, allowing her to escape the pressure of grades, college essays, SAT scores and looming AP exams. It also numbs the bitterness, hurt and resentment she feels toward her mother, who demands perfection, and her father, whom she catches banging a blond bimbo.

One frigid December night, drunk and pissed off after an argument with her arch-frenemy, she gets behind the wheel of a car and slams into a tree less than a mile from home. In the brutal aftermath of her accident, she’s forced to face her addiction. The truth is, she doesn’t know how to survive without alcohol. The reality is, she’d rather die than give it up.

First 150 Words:

Senior year just started and it’s already perfect.

Varsity Cheer. Check.

Hottie boyfriend. Check.

Kicking ass in school. Check.

The day couldn’t get much better. I slip on the dark wash Joe’s jeans I bought at the mall yesterday. Finally, a pair of jeans that make my non-existent butt look as good as J Lo’s.

I’m scanning my shoe rack for my leopard print ballet flats when the screen on my phone lights up with an incoming text. Olivia. I dial her number, putting her on speaker.

She picks up immediately. ” What are you doing tonight?” I can hear music blaring in the background.

“I’m trying to finish getting ready. Blake’ll be here any minute.” I’m yelling toward the phone while zipping back and forth across my room, looking for my OPI nail polish to fix my chipped pinky finger.

“I forgot you had a date. I was going to invite you out.”

Pitch N- Radio Hearts

Radio Hearts
YA Contemporary
63,000

Query:

Junie’s late father once said to never let go of the boy who reminds her of her favorite song. Easier said than done when that boy happens to be the key to saving her late father’s restaurant, if only she betray him. And, in turn, her own heart.

There are only two things more important to seventeen-year-old Junie Conway than the family restaurant: classic rock and good food. She can’t be bothered with her best friend’s obsessive gossip about the international pop enigma, Roman Montgomery, who has been on the run since his bandmate’s mysteriously death last summer.

When, on vacation, Junie is roped into buying personal effects (i.e. condoms), she meets a tattooed stranger who is both infuriating and enchanting. With eyes as green as basil, and a smile so Cheshire she second-guesses everything she thought she wanted in love, he compels her to shuck her safe cocoon of well-worn recipes for a whirlwind night at the shanty beach venue, the Isla Lona.

There, she uncovers a terrible secret that has more to do with her than she realizes, and the lies that both she, and her loved ones, have built begin to crumble faster than Bruce Springsteen’s first marriage. In the end she has a choice, protect the tattooed stranger who lied to her, or save what is left of her beloved father?

First 150 Words:

The vacation condo looks different this year. New wallpaper, new furniture, new oven and stovetop―there’s even a new coffee maker. Maybe this year I won’t be eating coffee grounds for breakfast. Despite popular belief, coffee grounds are about as filling and nutritious as dirt, and tastes about the same. Not that I’ve eaten dirt since I was a baby shoveling beach sand into my mouth with the gusto of a National Hotdog Eating Champion, but I imagine that coffee grounds have the same consistency. The only thing that the renovation hasn’t touched is the bird-shit yellow bathroom Dad hated.

“I feel like I should be following the Yellow Brick Road every time I lay a brick in there,” he used to complain. Of all the things to keep, it was that god-awful yellow? I feel angry in spite of myself for remembering.

Pitch M- Tendril

TENDRIL
Dark Contemporary YA Rapunzel Retelling
89,000

QUERY:

Opal’s hair feels pain, love, and hate. The family curse decrees that MacBride women born with albinism and magical hair will never find true love. According to the curse these same aberrations will excite uncontrollable lust within MacBride men.

When circumstances force Opal to live with her uncle, his indecent obsession with her sentient hair and alabaster skin drives her to seek refuge at the cemetery where her grandmother is buried. There her spectral appearance attracts a host of lost souls including the ghost Riff. Both Riff and his living brother Dylan fall in love with Opal, and she with them, compelling her to question everything she was told about love, the MacBride curse, and herself.

Soon not even the ocean fog can obscure her uncle’s depraved plot to imprison her in his islandlighthouse forever. Opal makes a plan to foil his plot, break the curse, and exact revenge, with her hair as willing accomplice. But first she must decide if her future happiness lies in this world, or the next, and find a way to save both “princes”.

First 150:

Sporadic blasts of the foghorn heralded our arrival at the lighthouse. The mist enveloping us was thick with the smell of sea creatures, both living and dead.

Aunt Laura and I followed Uncle Ned as he entered the lightkeeper’s cottage and lumbered up the narrow staircase, carrying my suitcase into one of the two bedrooms on the second floor. Laura began to unpack, setting my folded clothes on the narrow white bed.

“Darling, shouldn’t you start making dinner?” Ned asked.  He was slightly out of breath.
“Yes, of course.” Laura scurried away, leaving me alone with him.

Ned stepped towards me. I grabbed an armful of sweaters and held them to my chest, as if their soft wool had the protective properties of an armored breastplate.

“When is the funeral?” The words scraped past the lump in my throat.

“Tomorrow, at ten thirty. Just a private service with the two of us, and your Aunt Laura.

Pitch L- Razor Blade Kisses

Razor Blade Kisses
YA Bildungsroman
63,300

Query:

When life seemed too painful to endure, Rachel Montgomery knew her razor blades’ would save her from her inner demons. The sweet deadly kisses of eighteen-year-old Rachel’s razor blades never failed to save her from her pain. But she’s not about to let the world know she’s anything but a normal American girl.

For the past two years her life has been in a tailspin. Her parents hate each other, driving her mother to be distant and her father to be an abusive drunk. Rachel has started a deadly addiction, one she can’t escape from. To ease her pain, she carves herself with razor blades. She craves the love the blade gives her and the sweet escape she gets when her pain drips away in scarlet drops. When her best friend, Violet Cox, is murdered, she’s thrown into a deep depression. Razor blades whisper to her, saying cut deeper and let your soul free.

Rachel’s depression, and being accused of murdering Violet by mean girl classmates, causes her to flee school. The voices in her head tell her to go anywhere, anywhere but home. That’s when she runs into Derek. She met him once at a party and thought he was someone she could trust. Without anyone to talk sense into her, Rachel runs away with him. He promises her a new life, promises to take away her agony. Only Rachel never imaged this new world would be darker than the one she was trying to leave behind.

I am currently seeking representation for RAZOR BLADE KISSES. At 63,000 words it is a complete young adult Bildungsroman novel. RAZOR BLADE KISSES is a book about a girl trying to deal with personal demons while not falling victim to the underbelly of darkness that her self-mutilation and depression are leading her. Readers of Ellen Hopkins, Patricia McCormick, and Jay Asher will form a natural market for this novel.

First 150 Words:

Sunlight poured into my small bedroom, making me have to shield my eyes from the painful rays. As I sluggishly walked over to the window to shut out the light, I silently cursed at myself for not remembering to close my curtains before I went to bed.  Before I killed the blithe, cheery sun rays I took in the dawn.

The sun was appearing out of a red horizon, like a fresh bleeding wound. There was hardly a cloud in the indigo sky. It was a perfect start to a day, some would say, but I preferred darkness any day. I glanced at the octagon clock on my wall and realized I was going to be late for work.

Five hours later I was home once again. I simply loved how four days a week, five hours of my life were stolen from me thanks to the department store, Bullseye.