Monday, April 18, 2011

Submission Amanda

Name: Amanda Kurka


Title/Genre: THE NIGHT--Epic YA Fantasy

Pitch: In a world of magic and false gods, 15-year-old Aerael discovers the power to overthrow them all within herself, if she can control it.

1st 250 words:

Aerael leaned across the basin to reach for a half-used cake of soap. Her necklace slipped free, the obsidian stone casting its thin, silver light over the soaking dishes.

“By Yirai,” she muttered, tucking it back inside her shirt with wet fingers.

“Watch your language, young lady.”

Aerael jumped. She hadn’t heard her mother come downstairs.

“You must be more careful. Anyone could’ve seen it.” She stepped into the kitchen, and the light from the hearth washed her thin frame in gold and orange.

“No one’s here,” Aerael said, glancing quickly into the tavern’s dining room to be sure. “You really shouldn't be up--Amos said you should get as much rest as you can.” She picked up the kettle. “Tea?”

She shook her head dismissively. “He’s been saying that for years. And yes, tea will be good--it’s why I came down, anyway.”

“I’ll get the water going, then. I can bring it up when it’s done.”

Her mother sighed. “I suppose I’ll be in my bedroom.” The steps creaked beneath her as she left.

Shaking her head, Aerael put the kettle over the fire, prepared the ginger-lemon mixture, and poured the hot water over the leaves to steep. She considered the dishes. If she started now, she might forget the tea and let it get too strong. Better to wait.

Checking the dining room again to be sure she was alone, she took a seat on the stone hearth and drew out her necklace.


  1. I think this is well written. I'm intrigued by the idea of the necklace needing to remain hidden. But the mother talking about her bad language pulls the attention away from the necklace, which is what makes me want to read on.

    In the pitch I'd like to learn more about the magic she has, which is difficult to do in a short pitch I know, but in your query letter I'd consider at least one sentence talking about it.

    Overall good job, I'd definitely want to read more.

  2. You've set up some interesting conflict in so few words in your pitch. I want to know more about magic and false gods - nice job. The necklace is a pull for your reader and I'll read on to learn more. However, I'm just as intrigued about the relationship between the mother and daughter. You've excellent potential for a conflicted heroine!