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Son of a Pitch round two has begun! This week my blog will be dedicated to the authors of these amazing entries.

Comments are for the Son of a Pitch critiquers and authors only! All other comments will be deleted, them’s the rules peeps.

At the end of the week, I will vote for my favorites…I think five…I should check that.

Onward!

Welcome to Team Rarity!

Entry 10:

Title: RULES OF THE DRAGOS
Category and Genre: YA Fantasy
Word Count: 70,000
Query:

Give eighteen-year-old Ava Dracaena a sword and someone to swing at, she’ll excel beyond every expectation set. But put her in charge of making decisions that can change the way her clan lives, expect disaster. Ava thinks with her heart and not her head, which more than one person in the clan has told her is the practice unfit of a leader. Now if she could only get her parents to see her reason for turning down her birthright as clan leader.

The chance to show her father just how strong a protector she is never comes. Ava’s world is shattered with the murder of her sister and disappearance of her parents. Topped off with a declaration of war from the enemy clan, she no longer has a choice of whether or not to lead. Ava wants to protect her clan, and the only way to do that is be the leader she’s not sure she can be.

Because death, kidnappings, and self-doubt aren’t enough, Ava’s finding it difficult to get the dark-souled leader of the enemy clan out of her thoughts. She shouldn’t want anything to do with him, but she finds herself drawn to his darkness, determined to find the light she senses is buried deep within. If she goes to war with his clan, she may end up losing her soulmate. And if they don’t fight, the enemy will follow-through on a promise made centuries ago and forcefully take her people under their control.

First 250 Words:

I, Ava Cecilia Dracaena, do not accept my birthright as the next Dragos Clan Leader. I pass this honor to my sister. In exchange for my title, I request of the Dragos Guard and Clan Leader to amend the laws preventing women from training to be a member of the elite group of protectors. Guard General Braylen Negrescu, with your permission I request to officially join the trainees who will soon compete for their spot on the Guard.

A gust of wind pulled the paper off my lap where I’d balanced it on my knees. As it floated to the ground,  I ran my hands over the tops of the grass, smiling at the way the tips tickled my palms. No need to chase after it, I’d memorized exactly what I wanted to say weeks ago.

The crisp air filled my lungs. Insects all around chirped. We’d finished training twenty minutes ago and rather than head back home, I sat in the grass near the edge of a cliff overlooking the river below. Tomorrow I was supposed to give a speech to accept my birthright as Clan Leader. Instead I’d prepared one to denounce the title and instead give it to my sister.

As I gathered my towel, water bottle, and bag my phone vibrated in the side pocket. We weren’t supposed to have them, but what our trainers didn’t know wouldn’t hurt them.

Now for my thoughts.

But first, a reminder, I am not an expert. I am a writer. My comments are my opinions. If any of these strange wordy things that pop into my brain and onto the page make sense for YOUR ms and makes YOUR writer’s brain spin with all the inspiration, YEA!!! Use them…run with them…let your creative brain go! If reading one of my insanely odd thoughts just makes you shrug and sparks no new idea, forget it! YEA!

I am here to help YOU make YOUR ms the best it can be. I do not want to rewrite it. I do not want it to be something else. Your words should be yours. I WANT TO HAVE A GREAT TIME!

Feel free to ask questions. Feel free to post any rewrites in the comments. I will be happy to answer anything and read revisions! Anything I can do to help get the creative juices flowing.

CRITIQUE:

Query:

Give eighteen-year-old Ava Dracaena a sword and someone to swing at, she’ll excel beyond every expectation set. But put her in charge of making decisions that can change the way her clan lives, expect disaster. Ava thinks with her heart and not her head, which more than one person in the clan has told her is the practice unfit of a leader. (Ugh. I’m sure that makes her feel fabulous…*cue eyeroll*) Now if she could only get her parents to see her reason for turning down her birthright as clan leader. (Okay! MC is set up, we know her and what she wants! Where are we? Earth?)

The chance to show her father just how strong a protector she is never comes. Ava’s world is shattered with the murder of her sister and disappearance of her parents. Topped off with a declaration of war from the enemy clan, she no longer has a choice of whether or not to lead. Ava wants to protect her clan, and the only way to do that is be the leader she’s not sure she can be. (And obstacles to what she wants! Great! And dude, too bad for her…)

Because death, kidnappings, and self-doubt aren’t enough, Ava’s finding it difficult to get the dark-souled leader of the enemy clan out of her thoughts. (Oh dear, drawn to the bad boys…I understand.) She shouldn’t want anything to do with him, but she finds herself drawn to his darkness, determined to find the light she senses is buried deep within. If she goes to war with his clan, she may end up losing her soulmate. (Soulmate? How does she know this?) And if they don’t fight, the enemy will follow-through on a promise made centuries ago (What promise? This is too vague.) and forcefully take her people under their control. (Is the taking them under control the promise? How will they do it? With magic? With swords and shackles? Let us know what evil waits. And stakes! Check!)

First 250 Words:

I, Ava Cecilia Dracaena, do not accept my birthright as the next Dragos Clan Leader. I pass this honor to my sister. In exchange for my title, I request of the Dragos Guard and Clan Leader to amend the laws preventing women from training to be a member of the elite group of protectors. Guard General Braylen Negrescu, with your permission I request to officially join the trainees who will soon compete for their spot on the Guard.

A gust of wind pulled the paper off my lap where I’d balanced it on my knees. As it floated to the ground, I ran my hands over the tops of the grass, smiling at the way the tips tickled my palms. (Wait! Her paper! She doesn’t react to it blowing away? We went from a letter to the grass too fast for me. See it float to the grass…let us feel what she does about it, then let her touch the grass, let her think about what those words mean…is this a big deal, what she’s about to do? At first I had her inside, by an opened window…then there was grass. So she’s outside, sitting on the ground? Set the scene. Let us see it.) No need to chase after it, I’d memorized exactly what I wanted to say weeks ago. (Ah, she doesn’t care that it blew away! I’d like this reaction right away. And she’s nervous? Excited? Scared? Running her hands over the grass and smiling…how does she feel? That letter is pretty big stuff, yet she seems at ease?)

The crisp air filled my lungs. (any smells in the air that can let us get to know the world? Any of her reactions to the scents to let us get to know her?) Insects all around chirped. (What kind of insects? How do they sound? Is this another world? How is it different, unique?) We’d finished training twenty minutes ago (Is she sweaty? Was it good training, training for what? Swords?) and rather than head back home, I sat in the grass near the edge of a cliff overlooking the river below. (Let us see the river, let us hear it.) Tomorrow I was supposed to give a speech to accept my birthright as Clan Leader. (Is this a tradition? She had reached a certain age?) Instead I’d prepared one to denounce the title and instead give it to my sister. (we read the speech, so we know…give us her feelings about it.)

As I gathered my towel, water bottle, and bag my phone vibrated in the side pocket. (A water bottle and a phone? Surprised me! I might need more worldbuilding. Talk of leading clans and joining the guard and training…my brain instantly imagined a no tech fantasy world. Where are we?) We weren’t supposed to have them, but what our trainers didn’t know wouldn’t hurt them.

*Good set up of a story full of possible drama and tension, but I am missing the emotion. She seems calm about what she is about to do. Is it no big deal? And the world…I have no idea where we are. Earth? If not Earth, give me details to show me where we are.

 

I hope some of that, maybe just one little thing, helps!

Thank you so much for being a part of Son of a Pitch!

Thank you for sharing your words!

And may the road of revising and querying and publishing be a great one!

Be sure to join us on Twitter! #SonofaPitch is super fun! #TeamRarity rocks!

 

 

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