Sunday, February 5, 2012

Bouncer Post #10

Genre: YA Paranormal
Word Count: 72,000


In GRACEFUL DEATH, fifteen-year-old Grace thought insomnia was her biggest problem until she starts seeing shadow people and an evil doppelganger of her best friend/secret crush. Determined to sleep no matter what the means, Grace accepts a joint from Raf—A.K.A. secret crush. One puff and Grace finds herself surrounded by the dead, drowning in their emotions as they suck the life from her.

She is rescued by the Grim freaking Reaper. He whisks her away to a powerful Underworld demon whose plans include using Grace to transport souls. But becoming Death Jr. was never in Grace’s life plan. She may have been tricked into donning Death’s hoodie and promised a restful night’s sleep plus unimaginable power with only a single use, but the perks come at the cost of an innocent soul.

Overwhelmed, Grace turns to Raf and discovers he knows about her trip to the Underworld and so much more. Too bad he’s got a thing against sharing. Alone and losing her mind, Grace can no longer put off using the hood and stealing a soul. When she does, she uncovers her victims aren’t the only souls in jeopardy.

GRACEFUL DEATH is a young adult paranormal novel complete at 71,000 words. My previous manuscript (Shimmering Angels) won the 2010 Sourcebooks Fire YALitChat writing contest. I am also an active member of YALitChat.
First 250:

Not in the damn hallway. Anywhere but here.

The instant my knees hit the ground I know. My insomnia is killing me from the inside out. I struggle to pick myself up, but the sweat on my palms turns cold, tacking my hand to the faded mauve linoleum. The faint odor of disinfectant and dirty sneakers wafts up, stinging my nostrils while the other students walk around me.

My pulse thrums erratically in my ears. White film spots my vision.

I can’t control anything anymore. Sleep is such a cruel and distant idea by now that when my energy seeps out, threatening to pull me into unconsciousness, the only thing I can do is wait it out. Slumped against a set of coral half-lockers, I watch the Santa Cruz High School crowd thin.

Only one more period, then I can go home, deal with this in private.

Other than a “whoa,” from one kid and a “doing okay, there, Grace,” from another, I’m ignored. By everyone except for the guy standing by the window. His tall frame casts a shadow across the floor, draping over me like a psychopath in a movie.

I open my mouth to spit out a nasty comment, but the sight of him stops me. I grow even colder. He’s dressed all in black, some emo kid hoping to get off on witnessing my meltdown, but the chill that pricks my spine warns of something different. Something dangerous.


  1. I don't typically read YA or Paranormal, but this intrigues me. Your first page really pulled me in. Nice voice.

  2. Love the first page. Good luck.

  3. I think it's a nice start. And just say no to drugs - they'll make you see dead people.

    Hope it goes well for you!