Wednesday, January 25, 2012

January Secret Agent #10

TITLE: Imminent
GENRE: YA Paranormal Romance

It was homecoming, and I refused to let one scary vision ruin my night.

“Come with me, Alexa…”

As long as I didn’t go behind the bleachers tonight, I’d be fine—I hoped.

I pushed the sound of the stranger’s ominous voice away. The butterflies beating my insides calmed and my heart rate slowed. Homecoming was a big deal in West Palm Beach and to my horror, my parents wanted to take pictures of me and my friends while our neighbors watched. I had to be able to smile.

“Hey, Lexi.” Dell Landry said as I approached him on the lawn.

My pulse quickened at the sight of him, my palms suddenly clammy. Butterflies of a different kind fluttered in my stomach, making it impossible not to think about our kiss. I did a double take, noticing how hot he looked in his black suit and red tie. He stood as tall as a basketball player, lanky, but muscular, the suit showing off his athletic physique.

“Hey.” I tried to sound casual.

“You look…beautiful.” His crooked grin made my heart leap into my throat, my face probably the same shade of pink as the evening sky above.

“Thanks, I like your—”

Taryn Stabler accidentally bumped into me then as she tripped in her high heels. Dell caught me by my elbow as I stumbled. A shock ran up my arm and I gasped, meeting his light green eyes.


  1. This is a good start. The dialogue is good and the into well done. I think the first sentences and the first paragraph could be moved around a bit to flow better.
    You may be able to delete the first sentence altogether.
    This is good. I would keep reading.

  2. I thought this was a good start. You set the potential romance up right away.

    You might, perhaps, give us a bit more of how she feels about that voice. Is she scared? Worried? Right now, it seems like it's just another problem she has to take care of. Maybe work a bit of emotion in there.

  3. I like this. It left me wanting more, wondering what had happened in her vision. I like how you hook us in, then go on to the talk of homecoming, which I think will definitely appeal to your target audience. My favorite line was "Butterflies of a different kind flutted in my stomach . . ." Nice transition there, giving us the tiniest bit of info about their relationship. Great beginning!

  4. The It was is a weak beginning. Maybe turn the sentence around to delete it and was, e.g., I refused to let one scary vision ruin my homecoming night.

    “Come with me, Alexa…” Need to know who's speaking here and what the voice sounds like here to add to the tension.

    Going behind the bleachers is where kids used to go to make out, smoke, take drugs/drink, so this is confusing.

    I'd say, don't be in such a rush to get to the this is a romance part and stay with the vision a bit more OR, as she's looking at him, maybe she sees a flash of the vision (describe a bit) and she's the one who trips...

    Just some ideas...

  5. I liked this one, but it felt rushed to me. One second she's anxious and the next instance she's thrilled. I would recommend that you stay with the vision a bit longer or at least allow her to have some conflicting emotions here.

    Overall though, I would keep reading. Nice job.

  6. I think the first sentence would read stronger if you reversed the wording.

    "I refused to let one scary vision ruin homecoming night."

    Refused is a much stronger verb than was, and you want that strength to help give your hook some kick.

    The disembodied voice doesn't really hold much mystery or suspense for me, since I have no idea what the vision is about. Scary can be a lot of things. It can be a horrible monster, a tragedy being played out, or someone wearing the same dress as her at the dance.

    Not sure why she can't go behind the bleachers, unless it refers to what kids do back there...

    Last sentence of the paragraph that being with 'I pushed'.

    "I needed to smile."

    You can cut "at the sight of him" in the first sentence of the next paragraph.

    I'm confused when she does a double take. If she's already walking toward him, obviously focused on him, why would she look away? And tall as a basketball player doesn't really solidify his height for me. Not all basketball players are tall. Many are average sized, especially in highschool.

    Lastly, a shock of what ran up her arm? Heat? Static? A sense of something? Perfect chance to spotlight the paranormal element here.

    Big picture thumbs up, I enjoyed it.

  7. This is clean and focused, but it seems to me it hasn't yet distinguished itself from any other "ominous high school dance" openings...maybe the hint of the vision could be a bit more memorable? Nothing terrifying, but something with another dose of imagery, a unique quality to it? And no need to measure that third sentence with "I hoped." That actually subtracted suspense for me, because it made me NOT trust our heroine's vision, etc...