For a second chance, I'm begging for your feedback on my first two pages. The Backspace conference is NEXT WEEK. During the first pages workshop, the participating agents will stop me when they would actually stop reading. *ahem* It would be RATHER AWESOME if I made it through the whole two pages. That's why I need your help. Where would/did you stop? Why? Rip me apart!
Okay...deep breath...here's my (revised) pitch line to get you grounded, then the first two pages of my YA paranormal romance, SOULSCAPE.
Seventeen-year-old Katherine Wake cuts a deal with the afterlife's gatekeeper to win her dead soulmate a new body. But she never expected that body to belong to a girl, and holding up her end of the bargain may cost Kat her soul.
I caught him watching every day, drawing in my soul as though he held it on a golden chain. And I held his, but only for a moment. Only until he left. He always left.
He leaned against the cafeteria door that day, fire dancing along his skin. I choked on my apple juice when the first of my classmates walked through him like he didn’t exist. Like he wasn’t ignoring the seniors trading yearbooks and gossip and goodbyes in the space between us. Like he wasn’t the center of the entire universe with his hands stuffed in his jacket pockets, eyes glued to mine. They didn’t notice him, couldn’t see him. No one could. Except me.
The thought tingled in my fingertips and crawled through my blood, heating it, haunting me, until it burst into a starry night in the pit of my stomach. Breathing wasn’t a possibility. Not for either of us. He stumbled backward, his eyes still pulling me, freezing and melting me at the same time, until he touched two fingers to his lips. My world slowed, then stopped as a whirlwind of gold light burst from his boots and swept around his legs, along his stomach, over his face until he was gone. I’d never thought a heart could disintegrate. I was wrong.
I bit the inside of my cheek and kicked my best friend’s Converse under the table.
“Did you see him, Nicky?” Nick followed the thumb I threw over my shoulder. “Wait! Don’t look!” I smashed my bangs over my eyes, embarrassed and stupidstupidstupid. “I mean, well, look, but don’t look like you’re looking.”
Look or don’t look, I told myself. He’s gone.
Nick tugged on the hoop above his eyebrow and swung his baby blues toward the door. “You mean Frat Perkinson?” He asked, losing his perfect cool as my ex sauntered into the room. “Please, please, don’t tell me you’re interested in him again, Kat.”
“Him who?” Leslie drawled as she squeezed into the seat beside Nick, Penny stiffly taking the one by me.
My oldest friend pursed her lips as she glared at Nick over the top of her glasses. “You two aren’t talking about Nick’s, umm, relations, are you?”
Nick practically rolled on the floor. “Relations, Penny Perfect? That’s the word of the day? I’m sure the big guy upstairs appreciates my thoughtful approach to free love. My selfless dedication to gender equality. My unceasing efforts to love all the little children of the world.”
I slipped from my seat as the same hateful fireworks from every other day exploded between my best friends. But I couldn’t help Leslie calm them down. I couldn’t even calm myself, still catching my breath from the way the boy’s eyes burned for me. In the moment the world had hiccupped, he saw something bigger, something grander than my mirror ever reflected, massive in its intensity and whispering…no, screaming the words that made my insides pull and twist, live and die.
That was our beginning.
Okay, darlings. Break out the red pens!
I'll announce the winner of SHATTER ME on Sunday, as well as post an updated query and two pages for any last minute feedback. Then I'm off to Backspace!