Pitch Wars - Team Briggs!

Today is the Pitch Wars agent round, and I'm super excited to host my three picks' pitches and first 250 words. This is just for fun and to show off how amazing they are - but if you're an agent or editor and want to see more, let me know! ;)

I'm so incredibly proud of how much all four of my authors have grown in the month or so that we've worked together. I was also very happy to learn that they've all started critiquing each others' books too! Go Team Briggs!

Name: Stephanie Garber
Genre: YA Sci-fi

Pitch: Violet has spent the last year searching the galaxy for her infamous pirate father. She’ll do anything to find him and to apologize, even if that means partnering with one of his enemies—a rogue space captain. Now she must choose between becoming a pirate like her father, or following her heart and betraying him a second time.
First 250:

The lightships always came to port on Sunday. Sometimes if I looked hard enough from my boardinghouse window, I swore I could see this planet’s murky brown sky change color. Fragments of blue and white, like pieces of broken stars, signaled the great ships’ arrivals.

“I don’t know why you like to go there instead of congregation,” said Moira, my roommate. “Pirates, pickpockets, and children with naked feet belong at port. You’ll never meet a decent young man there.”

“And what if I don’t want to meet a decent young man?” I sat on my bed to lace up my boots. They went up to my knee, almost meeting the hem of my skirt, which was short unlike Moira’s. “Maybe I want to meet a pirate and breed children with naked feet.”

Moira’s jaw dropped. “Why would anyone want that?”

Poor Moira. The girl had no sense of humor. Even when I was annoyed with her, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for her. If I’d grown up on this planet, feet always so close to the ground, head always too far from the stars, I probably would have been humorless, too.

If not for port and the life that thrived there, I’m sure I would have lost my mind. Mascar wasn’t the worst planet I’d lived on. As a desert plain it was always warm and dry, making it a nice change from the monsoon planet where I’d last stayed. 

Name: Teresa Yea
Genre: YA Gothic Horror

Pitch: 17-year-old Ava Nolan’s life as an amateur relic hunter is filled with backstabbing—not to mention literal stabbing—when her quest for an occult ruby pits her against her graverobber uncle and her ambitious boyfriend.  

First 250:

A visit from a lurker was the highlight of my night.

He was a scrawny guy about my age, seventeen, maybe nineteen at the most.  Propped against the side of the barn, he looked as pathetic as a scarecrow. Somehow he’d seemed scarier standing outside my bedroom window, a dark prince cloaked in fog and shadow.

His name, we learned after my brother put him in a headlock, was Ben Wolcott.

“I don’t get you, Ava.” Cam scrubbed the sweat from his buzz cut. “You wanted me to talk to him and here I am—” He kicked Ben in the ribs. Ben groaned and hacked up a string of bloody spittle. “Talking.”

“Stop it!” I latched onto Cam’s brawny forearm and dragged him away from Ben. “He’s had enough, you idiot!”

For freaking me out, Ben deserved a good beating, but Cam never knew when to quit. My brother’s head, as our dad used to tell Cam’s probation officer, was filled with missiles instead of brains—and it only took a tiny spark to launch WWIII.  As his sister and keeper, only I knew how to work the controls. 

Cam cursed under his breath and booted a rusty wheelbarrow instead. 

Point made, I drew my corduroy jacket closer to keep my teeth from chattering. Back in Santa Monica, I lived in tank tops and shorts, wore my bikini to the mall. We were still Californian by default, but moving to NorCal was like moving to the North Pole.

NAME: Kati Bartkowski and Heidi Lang
GENRE: YA fantasy

Pitch: 16-year-old Lailu just wants to open a restaurant specializing in cooking mystical beasts, but after reneging on a loan shark, she’ll 
need her handsome rival’s help to escape the stew she’s in.

First 250: 

Lailu scowled at the row of onions pinned to her far wall, her calloused fingers idly flipping a large chef's knife end over end before she turned to look at her remaining batch of onions.  "Don't worry," she told them quietly, "it will only hurt a second."  As she selected a sweet yellow one, the bell above her front door chimed.

Lailu whipped around, the onion toppling to the floor in her haste. “Welcome to Mystic Cooking,” she began eagerly, straightening her fluffy white chef’s hat.  “Our special today is…” Her eyes flickered to the man looming in her doorway.  "Oh." Lailu’s heart plummeted back to her toes.  "It's you."

For all she was barely over five feet tall, Mr. Boss (call me “Victor”) was not much taller, but his back was straight, and his cane seemed more like a threatening prop than a tool.  He looked like he might be in his sixties or seventies, his long gray hair streaked 
through with white and oiled back into a ponytail at the nape of his neck.  She'd heard the rumors, of course, that he was actually two hundred and six, and that he bathed in the blood of young dragons every month to slow his aging.  Lailu wasn’t sure she bought that; she knew how hard it was to kill a dragon.

Mr. Boss glanced at the line of onions pinned to the wall, then turned, taking in the spotless and very empty dining room.  “Busy, I see.”