Monday, February 27, 2012

March madness Prep #9

Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Word Count: 56k
(Updated at 1:45 p.m.)

When pre-prelaw student Taylor Simmons wakes up in bed with Evan McKinley, the only solution to save her tarnished reputation is convincing everyone that they’d been dating all along. Now if only he would agree…

First 150 words:
     Before I even opened my eyes, I knew something was wrong. Why? Because I wasn’t in my bed with the cream duvet comforter that Mom and I got at Macy’s last month like I should be. The fabric under my fingertips was my first clue. It was cool and kind of scratchy.

     Evidence number two: it smelled different. Not in a bad way. Just not like the apple cinnamon air freshener that Mom was fond of and sprayed all over the house despite the fact that Dad and I hated cinnamon. I countered it by walking around the house with vanilla tea candles.  Instead it smelled like cotton with a faint touch of pine and grass.

     But the most damning evidence of all was when I opened my eyes and saw the muscular bare back of a half-naked guy—at least I hoped half since I couldn’t see beneath the navy blanket wrapped around his hips—that definitely should NOT be in my bed.


  1. This one made me smile. Sounds like she's got a bit of a conundrum!! I LOVE the voice, and your opening grabbed me from the start! I want more, I got to the end and I was like, where's the rest of it? :D My only hang-up is the phrase "pre-prelaw". Is she in high school? Is there another way you could phrase what you're trying to say there? :) Other than that, loved it and I seriously want more!!!

  2. The pre-prelaw also threw me a bit.

    I kind of felt like the opening was a little too rambly. By the end, I wondered how long she was going to lie in an unfamiliar bed with her eyes closed, reminiscing about her house and her family. If she knew she wasn't in her bed, but didn't know where she was, wouldn't she want to open her eyes and figure it out?

  3. Thanks for your comments! Someone suggested I put "aspiring prelaw student" instead to clarify things, but I was already at the 35 word limit so I was trying to cheat a bit :) But there's already been three strikes so it's out!

    I've also changed the sample a tad so it would move along a little quicker rather then just staying on her thought. Thanks for your comments though!

  4. I’m still a little hung up on the “pre-prelaw” but other than that, I love your pitch!

    Ooh, I loved this! Great voice in this opening. My only suggestion is to omit the part about the vanilla tea candles. It seemed like unnecessary information that drew me out of what was going on a little bit. Really, other than that, I love it :-) I also want to say great job bringing in the senses! I would definitely read on.

  5. Much better after the revisions. I second the suggestion to remove the vanilla tea candles, though.

    For the pitch, how about "When aspiring prelaw student Taylor Simmons wakes up in bed with Evan McKinley, she knows she can save her tarnished reputation if everyone thinks they’re dating. But first, she has to convince him to help." - 35 words, and no pre-prelaw confusion :)

  6. You have great suggestions here. I love the excerpt, but that pre-prelaw bit through me. Is she in high school? I love Veronica's change for the "aspiring prelaw" - Great pitch!

  7. Take out the pre-prelaw, it doesn't make sense bc no one knows what that means.

    Veronica made a great suggestion. Maybe try to get aspiring prelaw student in the pitch.

    I also didn't like the wording "kind of scratchy"

    Evidence number two has a lot of unnecessary information. You could take out some of that paragraph and give a little tease of her reaction or what she does next.

    I love the pitch and the voice. Great Job!

  8. This made me laugh. Great voice in the first 250 words as well as the pitch. In the pitch, as far as wording, I do think it should be "they've been dating" instead of "they'd."

    Nice job!

  9. Thanks for everyone's wonderful advice! I've been able to fix up my entry as best as I could because of you guys. :) Good luck to everyone else in the contest!