It’s such an honor to be able to act as a judge in #pitchslam this year. I entered this contest last year and ended up as a finalist with the manuscript I found an agent with. It’s a wonderful contest with great feedback. One of the things the team likes to do is put up our own sample “entries” just as the entrants do. This is so A) you have a chance to see how to submit your final entry and B) you can try your hand at feedback–on us!
Just something fun to do while you’re either waiting for feedback or working on polishing your entry. So, here it is!
Name: Cindy R. Wilson
Genre: YA Near-Future Sci-fi
Title: Into the Deep
Word Count: 79,000
If your main character could be any Star Wars character, who would they choose and why?: My character would be Finn because she really wants to do the right thing despite what she’s gone through in her life. She will also do anything for the people she loves, even if it means making her own sacrifices.
35 Word Pitch: When seventeen-year-old Jet gets caught for illegally creating dream worlds for customers, the police offer a deal: freedom for her help catching a serial killer through his dreams. She agrees—until she’s his next target.
First 250 Words:
Today is only as good as you make it.
As I settle in the back seat of the taxi, the message scrolls across the Smartband on my wrist, repeating three times before vanishing. A Collins original, I’m guessing. My dad sends me messages as often as the prison guards will allow him access to a media terminal.
He started the scrolling marque pep talks after I told him about the dreams. The ones I used to give myself after the police hauled him away and I lost him forever.
I learned a long time ago that dreams are far more dangerous than nightmares. They take your hand and guide you into paradise, offer you hope, love, riches beyond belief. Accomplishment and revenge.
They can even kill you.
That’s why I never let myself dream anymore. When I fall asleep, I blank my mind until it’s a black hole, absorbing images too quickly to let them fully form in my mind.
Emptiness is safety.
But that doesn’t stop me from making a little money off of other people’s dreams. After all, Mom works hard enough without having to worry about groceries and lawyer bills. Tonight is another fight, hand-to-hand combat in the bowels of a dilapidated building I’ll make realistic by dotting the floor with pigeon droppings and stirring the air with the stench of mildew.
There’s also a private client. Mickey Mouse. None of us use our real names. Except for Houston because he doesn’t care if he gets caught.
Check out the other judges entries, too!