Wednesday, September 12, 2012

CAGI Entry #59

Genre: YA urban fantasy
Word count: 85,000 words


Seventeen-year-old Megan’s one-night stand with a vampire may mean her death—or worse, an eternal commitment.

She can’t remember the night in question, but Alistair does. His ultimatum to marry him or suffer earns nothing but vehement refusal from her and that is how the torture begins. Killing Megan’s friends and lookalikes, robbing of her sleep, weaving himself into her mind so thoroughly with displays of fierce loyalty and cold-blooded cruelty that she can’t escape him… Nothing is off-limits. As her mind unravels, it becomes clear the only way to be free is to kill Alistair. If only it weren’t impossible for a tech geek like her to kill a centuries-old vampire she can’t help but be drawn to.

Or is it impossible? Megan soon gains the ability to fight, defeat, and even kill supernatural beings, but it comes with countless conditions that make her powers nearly useless if they’re not being used to protect the person to bestow that gift upon her. It may ultimately cost her the one thing she’s fighting so hard to keep: her freedom. A romance she may have to sacrifice and the desire to decide her own future again makes Alistair’s proposal more tempting than ever; if she becomes a vampire, she’ll lose her powers and be free to choose her own fate again.

Megan’s battle for the freedom to live as she pleases will cost the life of at least one person, but she can’t decide if that one casualty will be Alistair or herself.

First 250: 

“You have got to be kidding me,” whispered Megan. She rubbed at her eyes again, hoping what she saw in the mirror would turn out to be a trick her drowsy mind wanted to play on her, but nothing changed. There were two small bite marks in her neck.

What the hell happened last night? she asked herself. Bite marks didn’t spontaneously appear. She could work out what happened, right? There had to be a logical explanation.

She tried to remember what she’d gotten up to the night before, but her memory of the night before was almost completely gone. The last she recalled happening was Freya calling at roughly seven o’clock saying she wanted to go to a club. Megan objected to it at first, but Freya reminded her, “You owe me a night at one of my clubs for that movie bet you lost a few months ago and I’m calling in that debt right now. Now grab a dress and let’s go! If you can’t find a good black dress in your closet, come over and I’ll lend you one of mine.”

Surely Freya had some idea of what happened. She’d ask on the way to school.

She looked at the bite marks again, and she considered the nightmare she’d woken up from only a few minutes before. The details were slipping away now that she was awake and focused on more pressing issues, but bits and pieces remained. Her window opening, being frozen in her bed, a familiar man whispering in her ear…

The feeling of someone biting her neck.


  1. Oh man, vampires romance is going a hard sell right now. I do think you've written it reasonably well. I'm not sure the last couple of paragraphs are necessary - maybe a flash or two but we kind of get she's been bitten and doesn't remember.

  2. I also have to say that agents are saying vampire stuff is really hard to sell, at a conference I went to that was all they talked about. You have really tight, concise writing, which I really like. This is pretty much absolutely nothing like what vampire books are selling right now, so that should work in your favor. Just know that if an agent turns you away, its probably not your writing.

    I thought this line, " A romance she may have to sacrifice" reads a little clunky. I had to read it twice, at least, but that may just be me. I like the idea that she's been bitten and that she doesn't remember last night. The only thing I would comment on is that I want to know why she can't remember. Is it because she took some e and drank a 4 Loco? This is just where my mind goes :) That's it though!

    Best of luck! I think you've got a great concept!
    Jessica #96

  3. Hi, 59! I love that vampires are the baddies again. Yeah! But rumor does have it that vampires are a hard sell in this market. Still, you’ve got a unique concept. Your most important revisions are, in my opinion, playing up your uniqueness. First of all, have you considered changing Alistair’s name? You’re using the name of a vampire from the most popular vampire book out there, and it’s hard to not see the image of Alistair from Twilight.

    I’m not sure if most teens would call it a “one-night stand.” To me, that’s the language of adults. Perhaps you could substitute it for “hook-up.”
    Between “her” and “and,” you need to either break it into two sentences or use an em-dash. It’s a touch clunky otherwise.
    This sentence would pack more punch if you didn’t end on a preposition: “If only it weren’t impossible for a tech geek like her to kill a centuries-old vampire she can’t help but be drawn to.” Also, could you add that Abby is a tech geek sooner in the query?
    Some plot elements are also confusing. How does Abby obtain these gifts? How are her powers made useless?

    This reads a little awkward: “what she’d gotten up to the night before.” Simplify and you’ll be in good shape.
    Also, Freya’s dialogue is too unrealistic. Cut the long explanation Freya gives about Abby owing Freya.
    Lastly, the ellipses are problematic. You should refrain from using them when possible—especially in the first 250.

    Lots of luck to you! If you have questions, ask below in the comments or find me on Twitter (@novelista85). -Jessica