Thursday, September 9, 2010

10 Pitch Entry #11: Marilyn Peake

Title: Mermaid in the Summer of Burning Water
Genre: YA Fantasy

With the help of a mermaid who washes up on shore following an oil spill, three teenagers uncover deeply hidden family secrets, including that of a drowned twin.

10 comments:

  1. My only advice for this pitch is to replace the explanation of the hidden secrets ie;..."including that of a drowned twin." with an explanation of what conflict will come about due to those secrets being unveiled. Also I know from reading your synopsis that the mermaid's presence heightens their senses and would like to see that incorporated in the pitch because it's such a cool idea. Hope this helps. Good Luck!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think the log line should include the fact the mermaid's affect on the teens because that makes it really unique.

    Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I totally agree--otherwise, it sounds like the mermaid is just a friendly creature who "helps" them in their journey (which sounds more MG to me). The word "helps" jumped out at me as not-quite-right initially. Even "aids" would be better. I think the tone of this needs to sound more YA--more edgy, older, and (darker) fantasy-like. This will match your story better, with its themes/issues of violence and alcoholism.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I like this one, but find the last part of the sentence ("including that . . .") both a little awkward and a bit flat. Perhaps rather than revealing the actual secret, you can let us in to some of the conflict introduced by the secret--something like "including the truth that their mother has struggled to keep hidden for the past twenty years" or something along those lines.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I think the length is really good. I see the flow being smoother if you delete, "including that of a drowned twin." And maybe slip a little bit in there about the mermaid, allowing her influence in the plot to stand out more.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Yes, the mermaid is the real hook of both your story and this pitch. Even a quick detail about her unique abilities would grab the reader more strongly. Still, I liked this logline and would read more.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The way this is written, I don't really see the connection. How's a mermaid supposed to help uncover secrets?

    (and hey, there's a drowned twin in my story too... though I have to wonder how you keep that a secret and what difference these secrets make.)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Okay, so I have to agree with some of the previous comments in that I need a tad more about the mermaid AND I want to know how these discoveries affect the kids. So, something along the lines of "When (insert character name) rushes to the aid of a mermaid who washed up on shore after an oil spill, he discovers that touching her has unlocked hidden abilities to (uncover hidden secrets?), but will this new found knowledge really (insert crisis, e.g., cause him to lose his friends).

    So you see, I don't know enough to really fill in the blanks, but hopefully you get the idea!! I still think it's a great and timely concept. Best of luck.

    ReplyDelete
  9. At first glance, I got a better idea of your story from your logline than I did from your earlier pitch. I think Lisa makes some great suggestions on how to tighten up the logline too.

    I like this premise and I'd like to see how it all connects: how does the mermaid impart her gifts? what consequences does that raise for the teenagers? what do they do with her after they rescue her from the burning water?

    I'm not saying you have to answer all of those questions in the logline, but maybe just tighten up the connections a little more. Questions also mean I'm interested and would like to read into it more!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thank you so much for your suggestions, everyone! I've completely rewritten my query based on these suggestions, and am looking forward to the rest of the contest.

    ReplyDelete

Tell us what you think. We'd love to hear from you! :)