Thursday, August 26, 2010

5 Pitch Entry #33: Laura Diamond

Title: SHARP'S BLOOD


Genre: YA Dystopian
Seventeen-year-old Justin Sharp's blood is poisonous, even to bloodsucking immortals. As an anemic, he's an outcast in a world ruled by fanged immortals who see him as a death sentence if they drink him dry. But one cruel bloodsucker, Eric, knows that anemic blood, in small doses, gives a drug-like high, and he wants to keep Justin as a source for his addiction. Justin has no intention of being a personal pharmacy for Eric, especially when the leech is responsible for the death of his kid sister. He's got a great plan to kill Eric—overdose him with his own blood—but he’s got to figure out how to get close enough to do it without losing his own life in the process.

5 comments:

  1. Seventeen-year-old Justin Sharp's blood is poisonous, even to bloodsucking immortals. As an anemic, he's an outcast in a world ruled by fanged immortals who see him as a death sentence if they drink him dry. But one cruel bloodsucker, Eric, knows that anemic blood, in small doses, gives a drug-like high, and he wants to keep Justin as a source for his addiction. Justin has no intention of being a personal pharmacy for Eric, especially when the leech is responsible for the death of his kid sister. He's got a great plan to kill Eric—overdose him with his own blood—but he’s got to figure out how to get close enough to do it without losing his own life in the process.
    *Not bad--nice hook in the beginning, nice leader sentence to finish. Definitely an interesting premise. Though, as a picky reader, I’m left wondering if your fanged, bloodsucking immortals are vampires. Because if they are, you really should just say it. (Yes, I know how we writers are getting gunshy about vampire saturating the market) It makes me feel like you’re dancing around the edges, and agents will too.*

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  2. Neat. It's got a nice hook and set-up, but I'd like more about the conflict and stakes. Seems almost too straightforward.

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  3. Love the opening hook, except it sounds like this is a vampire book. I’ve only read a few YA vampire books, so I can’t judge is this is like the millions of other queries an agent gets. Hopefully it’s unique enough for them to request some more. And if it’s not a vampire book, agents who don’t want to read any (and there are tons of them), will be turned off by the opening hook, thinking it’s a vampire story.

    Just some things to think about. ;)

    You definitely need to expand on this. And the query is supposed to be in Justin’s point of view (even if the novel is from both Justin’s and Eric’s), but it seems to be drifting between them. The best advice I’ve heard is write the query in first person, and then convert it back to third person. It really does solve the pov problem.

    How did Justin figure out he can kill Eric by overdosing him with his own blood? Aren’t there other ways to kill the vampires? Maybe safer ways.

    I’m assuming all bloodsucking immortals are cruel, so you can cut out the adjective when describing Eric. You haven’t given us reason to believe otherwise. Maybe you could give us a better description of the fanged immortals role in the world. Is it a terrible thing that they can’t suck his blood? What are the consequences for Justin?

    Hope this helps.

    Good luck with it! :D

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  4. Overall the pitch seems fine, though I have a little trouble with the premise of anemia being poisonous. Anemia is just iron deficiency -- *less* of what is in normal blood. Not sure how that logically could be poisonous.

    (I realize this is outside the realm of a pitch critique, but it might be easy to give him a different blood disease.)

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  5. I reallyy like this premise. I think the first sentence of your query is very grabbing and intriguing. I assumed you were talking about vampires, but I suppose it would make it clearer to say they are vampires so it doesn't raise the question of whether they are or not.

    The issue of anemia being poison might not be logical as Laurel said, but it's probably a relatively easy thing to substitute another blood problem.

    That said, I want to know a little bit more about this world. It sounds like vampires are common and known to the rest of the world. If so, that would be worth explaining because it's very interesting. Otherwise, how does Justin know all of this about vampires and his own blood?

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