Wednesday, February 9, 2011

February Secret Agent #34

TITLE: Starsong
GENRE: YA Contemporary

I will flat out die of embarrassment if Tanner Westin sees my notebook.

Victor is carrying it under his arm. He's twice my size with a face like a puppy dog, and as Finlay High's star defensive lineman, he has no trouble blocking my lunges. He chuckles like it's a sick game, stopping in his tracks and flipping my notebook out in front of me. My fingertips brush past the cover as he lifts it out of my reach again.

If Victor wasn't so big I'd kick his shins in. Instead, I wrap both my hands around his mega bicep and pull down as hard as I can. Victor just grins and heads right for Tanner, my body dangling like a flimsy paperdoll.

We reach him huddled beside his Jeep with his buddies, looking oh-so-cool in his black skater tee. They gawk at us as we approach.

I let go of Victor's arm and drop to the ground.

"Hey, Tanner, what's up, my man?" Victor holds up a hand, waiting for contact.

Tanner slaps Victor's hand in his friendly guy way and flips his chin-length sandy hair to the side. "What's up, bro?"

"Just stumbled across some interesting info, thought you'd like to know. It's about Pinks here ... "

Trying to be sly, I reach for the notebook again.

Victor blocks me with ease, flipping the notebook from under his arm and handing it to Tanner. Tanner glances at me, his face baffled.

19 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed this! I can feel her embarrassment and panic, as well as the cocky/joking attitude of her friend. This seems like a realistic situation, and I'm definitely in the moment, dying to know what happens next. Great job :)

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  2. Terrific description and vivid scene. I'm ready to read more.

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  3. I like this, it feels real and it's easy to read - but it doesn't feel like a first page to me, it feels like a scene from the middle of a novel.

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  4. I love the voice in the first line. Heck. I love the first line.

    I would definitely read on. This sounds like my kind of read. :D

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  5. I really enjoyed this also. Love that the lineman has the face of a puppy dog, and I gotta tell you, I like him, though he's about to horribly embarrass poor Pink (great name!). I hope Victor won't be all bad. :)

    Suggestions: How tall is this girl? Is she dropping to the ground when she lets go? Or is it more like he's sort of dragging her? I had a little trouble picturing her hanging onto his arm in the air for that long. Also, the verb "flipping" in "flipping the notebook from under his arm" gave me pause. Pulling? Yanking?

    Fun, fun scene. Strong voice. Best wishes!

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  6. I agree with the poster above - I like Victor, too. And Pink. And if I got to read on, I'd probably love Tanner.

    The voice, the vocab, and the grammar all seem right for a YA book. It is embarrassing and funny, and also so sweet. This has so much going for it.

    I'm hooked. I'd keep reading!

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  7. Loooooove it. Feels so genuine and it's a killer first line.

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  8. Well written, but feels too much like a scene out of a teen TV show for me to be truly intrigued yet.

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  9. This is really great! I would definitely read on if I could.

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  10. hooked. you give us the main problem upfront and the image of MC riding along in the biceps is hilarious. good job.

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  11. I'd read on. Not an unusual situation, or a catastrophe (well, maybe for the mc, but you know what I mean) but that's why I like it. You made me feel the mc's anxiety. Good job.

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  12. Oh, that poor kid...
    I really enjoyed it and stayed in. I don't have any suggestions, because it seems pretty tight. Thanks for the read.

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  13. Oh my gosh, this stirred up memories of high school, when I had my crush's name written all over my notebooks.:) This scene made me think of how embarrassed and nervous I'd be if a guy took the notebook and showed it to my crush. I would have died. Great job. I'd love to read on.

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  14. This is terrific. I feel the tension, the frustration, the scene, her adulation of Tanner, and I want to read on to find out what on earth she wrote that is so damning and to see if they get together.

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  15. I felt at a distance here, and I thinks it because while all this is going on, not a word is spoken. There's no, "give it back, Victor." and no "I don't think so." She's pulling on his arm and he's carrying her away (great image) and nobody says a word. Perhaps get some dialogue in there.

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  16. Kalen O'DonnellFebruary 10, 2011 at 4:58 PM

    I really enjoyed this as well. It's very polished, well written and executed and you obviously have a clear sense of where you're going with it. My only comment, and this isn't a criticism or nitpick at all, I'm just genuinely curious -

    Am I the only one who thought the MC might be a gay boy rather than a girl? Honestly, I read Pinks as a casually derogatory nickname instead of a girl's name and pictured this scrawny little guy hanging off Victor's arm rather than a girl. I'm just curious if anyone else read it this way or if it was just me, lol.

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  17. I did not get the impression that the MC was a boy - if he was, I would imagine the football bully would be more aggressive and cruel, and definitely would not allow Pinks to hang off of him in tow to Tanner. Just IMO. I liked this, but I also feel it has more of a MG voice rather than the YA it's labeled as - which isn't a bad thing! Finding where your voice fits is crucial - perhaps push the characters' ages back a bit and see if the story fits better with MG.

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  18. I like the voice a lot but feel it's a bit younger than YA. This seems to be something that would happen in junior rather than senior high and the protag's reactions and actions seem more appropriate to this situation.

    But I am engaged and would read on. There's a lot at stake here.

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  19. Oh, this was so cute. I loved the voice here, and my heart went out to our poor MC. Kick his jock-butt, girl! Kick it as good and hard as you can! I was rooting for her the whole way.

    I don't usually read contemp, but I would read on in this case, most definetly!

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