Monday, May 20, 2013

The Writer's Voice #1 - DAGGER ISLAND (MG)

Title: DAGGER ISLAND
Genre: Upper MG Fantasy
Word Count: 60,000

Query:

Dagger Island is no place for children, which is grand, because fourteen-year-old Sedna believes she’s all grown up.

After her parents’ death, Sedna’s forced to sail to the elusive island to live with her grandmother, exchanging her prim upbringing for a life of adventure.

But the adventure starts sooner than expected.

While crossing the Trade Sea, Sedna’s ship is attacked by sea dragons. She’s thrown overboard and almost drowns. When she wakes up, she’s on Dagger Island. Alone.

Relying on memories of her father’s expedition journals to survive, Sedna searches the jungle for her grandmother’s township. Along the way, she encounters another survivor, the annoyingly confident cabin boy, Louie, and they make an unsettling discovery.

Her father’s journals are full of lies.

Dagger Island has more secrets than the sea: barbarian cannibals, a village in the sky, and a tribe that worships the sea goddess. When Sedna suspects her parents died protecting the island’s secrets, she and Louie search for answers.

But the closer they get to the truth, and her grandmother, the more Sedna questions who she is—and if she’s really as grown up as she thought.

 
First 250:

Sedna was suffocating. She scrambled up the ship’s ladder feeling like a bird beating its wings against its cage. When she reached the top step, she flung open the hatch and squinted in the afternoon sunlight. Warm sea air gusted over the bow of the ship, filling the sails until brimming.

Ms. Bess yelled after her to stop, but Sedna climbed on deck and released the hatch, letting the wind slam it shut.

She was too old to have a nanny.

Her skirts flailed behind her as she crossed the planking to the starboard rail. The sparkling Trade Sea draped before her in every direction, a pristine reflection of the aquamarine sky. While locked in her cabin below, she'd wished for moderate seas and ideal winds. She wasn't disappointed.

Ms. Bess caught up to her, puffing hard. “Child, how many times have I told you not to run on the ship?” Round and doughy with a double chin, Ms. Bess’s cheeks resembled sweet rolls dotted with raspberry jam. “And put on your hat.”

Sedna parried her efforts to set the ladies cap on her head. “The sun won’t harm me.”

“It surely will. Too much spoils your complexion. You’ve already sprouted unsightly freckles since we left Datmour. What would your mother have said?”
 
She eluded Ms. Bess’s reach again. She didn’t mind her freckles. They gave her pale skin much needed color. As for what her mother might have said, she preferred not to think about it. Her mother’s phobia of water had kept Sedna from seafaring, but her death had changed that. Her death had changed everything.




 
 

32 comments:

  1. I love the adventure of your entry, I love the voice, I love the lies... AWESOME! YAY YOU!!! :D

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  2. Sedna sounds AWESOME! I'm ready to trek across Dagger Island with her RIGHT NOW! GREAT JOB!! :D

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  3. Sounds like a great adventure with mystery to boot. I'm ready!

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  4. This is going to be such a fun and mysterious adventure. You're going to rock this!

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  5. Ooh! Adventure, tragedy, and mystery. Sounds like awesome sauce.

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  6. I love everything this story promises--an exotic location, fiery characters, adventure, mystery, and even the seedling of a sweet and young romance. Best of luck with this contest!

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  7. I love this. The premise is attention grabbing, a well written query and the first 250 words show us that Sedna loves being independent without shoving the fact in our faces. Also it's some damn good reading. Great job and hope you get chosen.

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  8. Wow! You've managed to make Dagger Island sound even better! Good luck!!!!

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  9. You're first 250 words are so wonderfully visual!! Great job - best of luck to you! :)

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  10. I was in love with it the first time, and now I'm even more in love with DAGGER ISLAND! Awesome concept, awesome voice, and MG UNITE!!! Love it! Good luck!

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  11. Love the premise!!! It sounds like a great read!

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  12. GAH!!! What a great premise! I totally want to read this!

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  13. I have perfect faith in this author to deliver on every count. This entry totally deserves to be here.

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  14. I'm really hooked by these first 250. Great job!

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  15. So excited for you. Good luck!

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  16. This is a great entry! I'm hooked!

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  17. This sounds like such an amazing adventure. Good Luck!!!

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  18. I love a good MG fantasy, and this looks great! Sedna seems like a really strong character, definitely one I'd be willing to follow to Dagger Island. ;) Good luck!

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  19. I'm in love with this voice. The story is full of mystery (my favorite) and lies. This promises to be an exciting adventure for Sedna and Louie.

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  20. I absolutely love the premise and the voice! I want to read this (too bad I'm not an agent). Good luck!

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  21. Ammi-Joan PaquetteMay 23, 2013 at 9:18 AM

    I'm so intrigued by this and DEFINITELY want to read on further. Send me more!

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  22. Very different to what I normally see, and I'd like to read some more. Thanks, Sarah

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  23. A village in the sky? Count me in.

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  24. Sure, happy to take a look.

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  25. You've been ninja'd! I would love to see a pitch, one-page synopsis, and the first fifty pages. Please send it as a word attachment to...(contact Cupid/Brenda for further details!). Looking forward to reading your work :)

    --RED NINJA

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