Monday, October 1, 2012

1st Rd Sm Press Contest #24 - Daughter of the Moon

YA Urban Fantasy


Seventeen-year-old Selina Kane has always known she is different, but never imagined she is last-living-necromancer different -- not until she starts speaking the language of the Underworld and visiting Acherusian Lake in her dreams. And then Blake storms into her life, claiming to be her bonded protector and making her blush and stumble over her words. Blake warns Selina about an enemy from a past she can't remember: Ciara, queen of the undead.

Before long, the undead attack and Selina watches helplessly through the only spell she can conjure -- a protective shield -- as Blake is dragged away in her place. Selina turns to the necromantic powers she hardly knows how to use, risking her life to search for Blake in the Underworld. But Selina doesn't find his soul resting peacefully in Acherusian Lake. Blake's been transformed into one of the undead, and the guards of the Underworld expect their necromancer to find and destroy him.

Selina doesn't care what the guards' idea of her duty as a necromancer is; she's determined to get Blake back in one piece. There is a spell, one that would save Blake's soul, but she'd have to kill him to use it, and worse, transform him into a ferryman for the Underworld. There may be another way to save him, if she's willing to make dark alliances with the undead. Selina knows she shouldn't, but with Blake's life in jeopardy, the line between good and evil starts to blur.

First 150 Words:

As far as Selina knew, she was the only seventeen-year-old with her own burial plot. And once a year, she looked forward to nothing so much as visiting her grave.

5:44am. Just one more minute.

The glowing red digits of her alarm clock stared back at her from the insides of her closed eyelids.

Breathe in, breathe out.

Music blared from the alarm, scattering the silence.

Selina flung aside her comforter and leapt to the floor. She’d already dressed the night before, so all she had to do was slip into her sneakers.

The stairs creaked as she tiptoed downstairs. She darted through the living room and quietly closed the front door behind herself. But before Selina could get to her bike, her older sister appeared from around her car.

"What're you doing up so early? School doesn't start for another hour and a half," Jess said.


Mystery Science Theater Geek said...

Your query is excellent save one thing--the fact you've got a heroine who's a necromancer and a hero named Blake. It made me stop reading the first time through because all I could think of were the Anita Blake (necromancer) books by Laurell K. Hamilton. I'd rename your hero. Simple fix. :)

As for the first 150 words? Holy cow. They're awesome. I mean that with absolute sincerity. I'd love the opportunity to read this someday. I'll be following up with the blog to see how you do!

You've got my vote.

Heather M Bryant said...

I really love the touch of mythology you've brought to the query. The idea of Blake being a Ferryman is super exciting and I love the whole concept.

A lot of your query reminded me of Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy books though. I love those books so it may be a good thing, but if you haven't read them I suggest you do, just to make sure it's not TOO similar.

Your first 150 words were great.

Anonymous said...

I am in love with your first 150. I don't say that often. Awesome opening. GOOD LUCK!

Honey Badger said...

Hey, Entry #24!

I’m going around giving everyone at least one critique and one positive today. (Maybe more, if I spot something helpful.)

- I love the first line of your 150. Great job!

- My only problem is with the last line of your query. “Selina knows she shouldn't, but with Blake's life in jeopardy, the line between good and evil starts to blur.” Aren’t both options kind of evil? She either kills him or aligns with the undead.

Best of luck! :)

Lone Star said...

I love the first line. I would definitely keep reading. I don't have any problems with the query except that it might benefit from being a little shorter. I understood everything, but there may be more details than you need.

Lone Star said...

You've got my vote!

Slave to the Muse said...

Love the premise. Good voice and tight query! You have my vote!

Rachel said...

I like the "bonded protector" and "line between good and evil blurred." Very strong use of words. :) Hope you do well!!!!!