Monday, September 17, 2012

GUTGAA Pitch Contest #26: CALLING DEATH

CALLING DEATH
YA Paranormal
64,000

Query:

Sixteen-year-old Daughter of Death, Damaris, was born evil. The only way her kind gain access to Heaven is to steal human souls and trade them for eternal life. Or so she's been told. But Damaris doesn't buy that and refuses to kill anyone. She's also determined not to let her little sister end up a heartless, soul-stealing murderer like her parents.

The key to saving them both is Chase, a smokin' hot stranger with a penchant for breaking in through her bedroom window. Bent on retrieving his sister's stolen soul from Damaris's family vault at any cost, he offers a trade. He can show her magic that frees captured souls in exchange for her help.

They only have three weeks until her father's Death Day. Twenty-one days to find Chase's sister. Five-hundred hours to free all the souls before her dad hands them over to Death and they are lost forever. Thirty-thousand minutes to save her own sister and prove to her kind that their ancient beliefs are wrong. The clock's ticking, and Damaris is running out of time.

First 150 Words:

The moment I feel I'm being watched is when I'm contemplating the joys that must come with being an only child.

I slowly spin the loan crystal vial in my fingers. The silvery-blue soul dances erratically inside like misty water. For the millionth time I whisper an apology to the little soul in its cold, beautiful prison. I know it really means nothing at this point, but pretending it does makes me feel better. Just in time to hear my sister giggle maliciously, I put the vial carefully back in it's place on my bookshelf.

I squeeze my eyes shut, count to five while holding my breath, and all I get is a head rush and those stupid white spots flickering in my vision – not frustration relief.

Genevieve squeals down the hallway again, dragging something heavy and loud across my bedroom door. How did she spend her time while I was across the ocean in boarding school?

9 comments:

  1. Ooh, I love this one! A daughter of death is SO unique- especially one that doesn't go along with their beliefs. Sounds suspenseful and I love what you did at the end of the query with the countdown- gave me chills! Good luck!

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  2. Oh my goodness, this query ROCKS. I love it. Definitely one of my favorites. I agree with Abby, above, that the countdown was chill-provoking. It was positively thrilling to read. I wish you the very best of luck with this, it sounds amazing!

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  3. I want to read this. Right now! A ticking clock always works well and you made it intriguing beyond just that!

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  4. You have created a very unique character, which is fantastic! I had expectations of personality just by reading, "Daughter of Death," but you provided me with such a wonderful surprise. You gave your main character a soft voice, which completely pulls me into the story.

    I think this is a very clever story and would definitely keep reading.

    Good luck!!

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  5. PITCH: The voice comes through, and that line about him having a “penchant” for breaking in through her bedroom window is a grabber (because we’re assuming he isn’t a psychopath). Also, I love the numbers in the last paragraph. Her goals are there, and the concept is strong!
    FIRST 150: The voice really comes through, and the description of the soul in the crystal vial has me hooked like whoa.

    YOU’VE GOT MY VOTE!

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  6. Nice!! I read an earlier version of this query and the changes you made are fantastic! So much clearer and really pack a punch - well done!

    The 1st 150 are great, too - great voice and intrigue up front. My only nit - this line, "...dragging something heavy and loud across my bedroom door." When I think "dragging across" - I think floor. Bumping against a bedroom door seems to fit better. Like I said, silly nit...do with it what you will. But - I really like this! Congrats on your vote! Hope you've got 3 more coming to you! :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks girl! Appreciate the feedback!! The query went through quite a bit since the first one. ;)

      No such luck, but I don't even mind! Such awesome competition in this cat., and the winners were great choices!

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  7. The stakes you've set up are clear and I agree - the "ticking time bomb" aspect is always a great thing to have in a story. Best of luck.

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