Monday, September 17, 2012

GUTGAA Pitch Contest #18: FORBIDDEN SECRETS

FORBIDDEN SECRETS
YA Fantasy/Paranormal
95,000

Query:

Seventeen year-old senior, Kyra Siefert races toward two goals - a full track scholarship to college and defending her state cross-country title. However, things change when Kyra is attacked while on a training run.  Now trying to get past the mugging becomes priority number-one. Until she falls for Aidan, the too-chivalrous-for-his-own-good guy who sits next to her in Calc.

Eighteen year-old Aidan MacGregor might be immortal, but he's not invincible. Grieving and guilt-ridden over the death of his twin almost two years ago, Aidan uses his expressive drawings as an escape. Until he falls for Kyra, but since he's bound by a strict code of honor, Aidan can't tell Kyra he descends from a Highland Clan of Celtic immortals, guardians of an ancient Masonic treasure trove.

In this Romeo & Juliet meets Highlander, Kyra becomes the pawn for one rogue immortal pursuing a sacred artifact protected by Aidan's clan, and another seeking to settle a centuries-old blood feud. Aidan must make an impossible choice: betray his family or protect the girl who's claimed his heart.  But Kyra’s hiding a deadly secret that may cost her the boy she loves; unless she can trust Aidan with more than just her heart.

First 150 Words:

I always failed at ordinary.

Ordinary wouldn't have weird, freaky, come-true dreams or a scar that ached when something god-awful was about to happen. Ordinary wouldn't have guilt hanging over her head like an anvil. And ordinary would snuggle under the warmth of her down comforter, especially on a rain-soaked Sunday. Instead, I dashed down the hardwood stairs with iPod in hand, prepared to hammer through six miles in under forty-two minutes. 

Mom sat at the kitchen table, reddish-blonde curls boinging in all directions. She squeezed her forehead, like trying to stave off a tension headache. Without looking away from the Asheville Citizen Times, she handed me my cell phone. "Sweetheart, do us both a favor. Humor your father with a response."

Dad's text read: Love the hills and they'll love you back. Before I'd finished reading, the phone chirped with another quick pep talk: Be one with the mud.

6 comments:

  1. I love the voice and the humor in your writing. It hooked me right in. Love the last paragraph.
    Great job in the query, too. Best of luck

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  2. The Until she falls for Aidan sentence is a fragment. Until he falls for Kyra, but since he's bound by a strict code of honor is a little awkward. The premise sounds interesting.

    Really enjoyed your excerpt!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Nicole. Now that's twice I've heard I have a sentence fragment that doesn't work in the query. Time to take another look. :)

      Delete
  3. PITCH: This one does everything right as far as stakes and character goals. I really like how the two main characters get their own paragraphs of goals and complications. However, the punctuation and sentence structure might need a little help (awkward commas and fragments), which makes me think this entry isn’t quite ready.
    FIRST 150: Nothing awkward with fragments or punctuation here! This reads very easy on the eyes, with good flow and the surprising verb of her mom’s hair “boinging” in different directions. Love that. I wonder if there’s a better place to start, though? There isn’t much tension in her going for her run, unless maybe she’s had a premonition that it’ll go badly (is this the mugging run mentioned in the pitch?). That would be a great way to tie in the first paragraph (“come-true dreams”) with some fear and tension she may have about this run in particular.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Missus Braidyhead,
      Thanks for the comments. Yes - this is the run mentioned in the query. In the next 100 words her danger radar goes off, and then she has thoughts that something bad will happen.

      Thanks again. :)

      Delete

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