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YA Psychological Thriller


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#1 AReadingRedSox

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Posted 30 May 2019 - 08:57 PM

Draft 2! 

 

The boys of Asotin are dying.

 

The golden boy, the popular boy, the loner boy––one by one, they’re being found dead in the small Washington town. At first, their deaths are ruled accidental: nothing more than dumb boys doing dumb things. But as more of them start dying in increasingly violent fashion, it becomes clear there’s nothing accidental about what’s going on in Asotin.  

 

Athena Briggs knows the boys that are dying. As Asotin High’s star wide receiver, she’s competed side-by-side with them her whole life. And as the biggest player in school, she knows most of them off the field, too.

 

Lila Perez also knows the boys that are dying. As the smartest girl in the town, she’s tutored most of them at one point or another. And as someone who can’t ever leave a puzzle unsolved, she wants to know why they’re all dying.

 

Athena and Lila haven’t ever crossed paths before. But when an English assignment throws them together, they find out that they have more in common than they first thought––including an interest in the recent deaths…and in each other.  

 

With the local police force completely out of their depth, Athena and Lila take it upon themselves to find out the truth behind the boys’ deaths. Soon, they find themselves emerged in the secret, privileged side of Asotin­­––one that’s far more dangerous than either of them bargained for. It’s up to Athena and Lila to bring the killer to justice…even if the lines between right and wrong aren’t so clear anymore. 

 

IS THERE SOMEWHERE is a YA psychological thriller complete at 65,000 words. It will appeal to fans of Kara Thomas, ONE OF US IS LYING by Karen McManus, and THIS DARKNESS MINE by Mindy McGinnis.



#2 alibi174

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Posted 31 May 2019 - 11:33 AM

The boys of Asotin are dying.

 

The golden boy, the popular boy, the loner boy––one by one, they’re being found dead in the small Washington town.[too much is left unsaid about these boys before you go right onto to Athena. I know nothing about them except for their titles, and I don't even know how/if they're connected to each other. It feels too vague for me to really care about their deaths]

 

Athena Briggs is trouble.[this shift was jarring for me from your hook. There needs to be some transition between the two] She’s the star wide receiver on Asotin’s football team, the player, the girl most likely to roll up to school on a motorcycle.[I'm very confused. Why is she in trouble? Seems like life is going great for her] Lila Perez is perfect.[what happened to Athena? You're jumping around too much between characters without telling me anything compelling about any of them.] She’s the smartest person in any room, the girl with the picture-perfect boyfriend, the girl most likely to get a full-ride to Stanford. The two girls are nothing alike, and haven’t ever crossed paths before. But when an English assignment throws them together, they find out that they have more in common than they first thought––including an interest in why so many boys in town have been dying.[this just doesn't pop for me the way I want it to. Is there anything else that forces them together besides a vague interest in the dead boys? I would think everyone in the town would share that same curiosity]

 

So when it becomes clear that there’s nothing accidental about the recent deaths, and the police are slow to investigate, Athena and Lila take it upon themselves to find out the truth behind the boys’ deaths.[again, why them in particular? Is there something about them that makes them particularly motivated or interested?] Soon, they find themselves emerged in the secret, privileged side of Asotin––one that’s far more dangerous than either of them bargained for. And the more time the girls spend together, the more they start falling for each other.[this feels a bit like it came out of nowhere, and then you just abandon it in the next sentence. Either add some more relevance/detail, or just leave it out] It’s up to Athena and Lila to bring the killer to justice––even if the lines between right and wrong aren’t so clear anymore. 

 

IS THERE SOMEWHERE is a YA psychological thriller complete at 65,000 words. It will appeal to fans of Kara Thomas, ONE OF US IS LYING by Karen McManus, and THIS DARKNESS MINE by Mindy McGinnis.


If you have a few moments, I'd appreciate your feedback on my query.


#3 kmscott19

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Posted 04 June 2019 - 06:51 PM

The boys of Asotin are dying.

 

The golden boy, the popular boy, the loner boy––one by one, they’re being found dead in the small Washington town. At first, their deaths are ruled accidental: nothing more than dumb boys doing dumb things. But as more of them start dying in increasingly violent fashion, it becomes clear there’s nothing accidental about what’s going on in Asotin.  

This paragraph really isn’t necessary. I get the boys dying is the focus—the drive of your story—but they’re not who you’re focused on.

 

Athena Briggs knows the boys that who are dying. As Asotin High’s star wide receiver, she’s competed side-by-side with them her whole life. And As the biggest player in school, she knows most of them off the field, too. This sentence doesn’t add to the plot. Why does their deaths interest her? One would think as a girl playing on a team of boys, their deaths would open the field up for more females, relieve some pressure of having to be the best, or remove some teenage angst. What I'd expect in that situation would be some of those boys picking a fight with her all the time, some of them trying to hit on her, and maybe, some of them respecting her for how well she played. I honestly can't see her hanging out with all of them after school, not when she's the biggest player and basically showing them up. So, my question: why does she care that they're dying?

 

Lila Perez also knows the boys that who are dying. As the smartest girl in the town, she’s tutored most of them at one point or another. And as someone who can’t ever leave a puzzle unsolved, she wants to know why they’re all dying. A stereotype of smart girls vs. jocks, is that they try to date to earn points, are sweet and romantic, or make her life hell. What type does she fall into? Does she like one of the boys she tutored and is he now dead? Just because she likes solving puzzles, doesn’t mean she’d care that they’re dying. Sure, it might bug her that the police haven't solved the crime yet, but what’s the emotional connection. The smartest girl in town will know not to investigate—it would be dangerous and risk whatever future she has her eyes on—so what makes her want to?

 

Athena and Lila haven’t ever crossed paths before. But when an English assignment throws them together, they find out that they have more in common than they first thought––including an interest in the recent deaths…and in each other. This needs rewording. I understand it’s meant to tie your two MC’s together, but it’s a bit jarring.

 

With the local police force completely out of their depth, Athena and Lila take it upon themselves to find out the truth behind the boys’ deaths. Why would the police need help? Police solve murders all the time, if they can’t handle it, they phone organizations that can. If you answer why Athena and Lila care to investigate, it will help with this. Soon, they find themselves emerged in the secret, privileged side of Asotin­­––one that’s far more dangerous than either of them bargained for. It’s up to Athena and Lila to bring the killer to justice…even if the lines between right and wrong aren’t so clear anymore.  Not needed. Your final sentence works in my opinion.

 

IS THERE SOMEWHERE is a YA psychological thriller complete at 65,000 words. It will appeal to fans of Kara Thomas, ONE OF US IS LYING by Karen McManus, and THIS DARKNESS MINE by Mindy McGinnis.

 

 

I like the premise. It sounds like a great story. Your initial hook has me, but the rest just needs a little tweaking. I’ll happily keep checking on your progress






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