Sunday, February 26, 2012

March Madness Prep #7

Genre: YA Post Apocalyptic
Word Count: 60,000


Sixteen-year-old Fay may be the demon destined to destroy her civilization, so she turns to God and love to redeem herself. But when you have a natural urge to kill, not even the call of God can stop you.

First 150 words: 

     Fay sat on the dirt floor of the underground cave she called home, eyeing the small monster with slight annoyance. This particular one looked a bit like a deformed tortoise, except without the shell and with eight rows of needle teeth that could barely fit into its mouth. It hissed at her. She rolled her eyes and resumed packing her books for school.

     Honestly, how many more of these things did she have to kill before they got the point and left her alone? A lot more, probably. They’d been coming around since as long as she could remember.

     She cinched her book bag shut and looked at the creature again. Again, it hissed, but this time bent down as if it were about to pounce. She lifted her foot and slammed it down on its skinny neck, severing it from the crusty body. It screamed, but its head continued to hop around, lunging for her foot. 

*Please critique and post feedback in comments below*


  1. Interesting concept but the first sentence of your log-line seems contradictory - either she is the demon or she's not, and since she's already gone to God about it she obviously is. So you may want to just say something like 'When she discovers she is... she goes...'

    Overall I like the voice here, and the hopping head made me giggle. A bit of nitpicking could help this shine:
    Get rid of underground - it's a cave, that's implied.
    Show us her annoyance, rather than tell us. And why is it only a slight annoyance? Sounds like she should be sick to death of them.
    I'd just say 'A lot, probably.' The word 'more' spoiled the rhythm.
    Cinched - all the synonyms I could find for that didn't match the context. Are you sure it's right?
    You can cut words here by taking out the implied action of looking:

    She tugged her zip shut. The creature hissed, bent down as if ready to pounce. She lifted her foot and slammed it (take out the down - you've already used it) on its skinny neck... etc

    Hope this helps :)

  2. If Fay is a demon, destined to destroy civilization, what makes her turn to God in the first place? I get that only He could help her change her destiny, but why does she want to? What sets off the desire to reform? If you don't give me that, I can't buy into the whole premise of the book. (If she's been raised to a certain point of view - the desire to kill and a destiny to destroy - what makes her want to be something else?)

    It's an intriguing concept, but you really need that "why?" to pull it all together.

  3. You've gotten great suggestions. I agree the pitch needs work. Using 'may be' isn't strong enough. Is there a religious theme to the book? Do really need God in the pitch? I'd lose it and rework the pitch. Work it like this maybe...

    When Fay discovers she's a demon destined to destroy her civilization, she must fight her natural urge to (what) or (consequence)...

    Great voice and interesting premise! Good luck! :D

  4. Choosing love over her destiny of destroying her civilization sixteen-year-old demon Fay seeks out the one thing that could redeem her. But when you have a natural urge to kill, not even the call of God can stop you.

    I think the premise is great but the pitch is weak. Try taking out the may be - is she or isn't she?
    Redeem also confuses me - i think of redemption, is that what she wants or doesn't she want to be stopped from destroying civilization?
    However I love the last line of the pitch.

    The excerpt needs something. I am not getting much of anything. I don't feel the tension or get a sense of Fay. I am not saying that both have to happen but there needs to be something that keep us reading.

    This story sounds like something I would love to read great concept.

    Good Luck