Wednesday, May 16, 2018

May Secret Agent Contest #2

TITLE: Visions of Us
GENRE: YA Paranormal Romance


A few days ago, I met my soulmate. This is not me simply being an overdramatic teenage girl who bumped into a cute boy in the hallway. This was magical confirmation that I had found my one true love. And coming from me, that’s saying a lot. I thought it was a witch’s myth that no witch had ever actually experienced. But now I know it’s true. When I touched him for the first time, not only did I feel that warm, safe, exciting love, but I saw it. I saw our future together and it was unimaginably beautiful.

But today was different. Today I had a different vision. Just as I thought something was finally going my way in my tiny world, the worst imaginable thing happened.

I scratch my pencil so hard against my journal, that it’s only a matter of time before I break the tip. The tears streaming down my face soak the page but I try to write around the wet spots. I focus on putting pencil to paper in hopes that my sobs will soon subside.

As I quickly wipe my tears away, I hear heavy footsteps barreling towards my room. The bronze doorknob twists and the heavy wood swings open. I slap my journal closed and sit up straight in my bed. I stifle back any rogue tears. My mom bursts into my room and I already know what’s coming.

“Ever heard of knocking?” I ask.


  1. I love the voice in this! I'm really curious about the magic of her knowing she met her soul mate, and about what terrible thing happened. But I feel like it loses momentum that we're hearing about it in a journal while she's sitting in her room. It might be more powerful to start with one of the actual scenes, either where they first meet or when things go wrong. I don't feel her sadness since I don't know what caused it. Rather than make me wonder what's coming next, I feel like I'm wondering what already happened. But your writing and voice are great!

  2. So, I know the second sentence is supposed to be sarcastic, but it comes off a little patronizing, like you're talking down to teens. You gotta remember, no teen thinks they're being overdramatic when they bump into a guy and fall for them (and plenty of adults think that they'll meet prince charming that way too. Exibit A *points to self* ) Also, specifics are always better. Rather than saying "the worst imaginable thing happened" a harder impact would be to tell us what happened. Then the reader will 1) see what kind of story they're getting into, and 2) will be much more excited to find out more, especially if what happens is really out there.

  3. I felt mildly hooked, but I for sure think it could be a better hook with the two comments above me saying to start with a scene. Also, I second the overdramatic line, no teen ever wants to hear they are overdramatic. My sister is fifteen, and if I told her that I'd be hearing how she isn't and how mean I was. I also felt that I was taken out of the scene when it came to the journal. I think with changing the hook and updating the scene this could be really good. Best of luck!

  4. This is just my personal preference, but I didn't enjoy the first 2 paragraphs. I'd love to see the information there more subtly woven in to the narrative going forward.

    In the 2nd paragraph, I spot a cart-before-horse construction. She hears the footsteps approach and THEN she quickly wipes her tears. If these things happen at the exact same time, I'm going to wonder why she's quickly wiping her tears. Consider putting the footsteps before the quick wiping.

    This sample feels like it's one more self-edit away from polished. Check out this self-editing checklist for some great tips on tightening prose:

    Thank you for sharing!

    However, the 3rd paragraph completely intrigued me. I suggest making an editing pass to eliminate unnecessary "that"'s and "try to"'s. She writes around the wet spots or she rips the paper when she hits one. If she's trying to write around the wet spots, I have no idea what picture to build in my head.