Tuesday, July 1, 2014

July Mystery Agent Entry #13: [UN]DATEABLE

Genre: YA Contemporary
Word count: 88,000

Logline: When Jennifer Clark gets pulled into her best friend Kyle’s fake dating scheme, there are only two possible outcomes: the plan fails and Kyle loses the girl he’s been pining for, or it succeeds and Jen loses him—the boy she secretly loves.

“Are you even listening to me, Kyle?” I struggled to stay in step with him, all the while juggling a precariously stacked pile of notebooks. “Why are you wasting your time? We’ve been over this before.”

I jogged to get in front of him, placed a hand against his chest, and exhaled in exasperation. He could have easily kept on moving, pushing me aside with a slight flick of his wrist, but he stopped anyway.

“Been over what, Jen?” he asked, glancing over my head toward the gym door just a couple feet down where our mascot, a Mustang splashed with blue and gold paint, was peeling in thin strips off the door.

“It’s like she has you under a spell,” I muttered, rolling my eyes. It was obvious he hadn’t heard a word I said. Typical. “Hello? My face is over here.” I snapped my fingers an inch away from his nose. “Lexi doesn’t even know you exist. Getting a seat in front of where we’ll be cheering isn’t going to do a damn thing to change that. Maybe if you actually introduced yourself instead of stalking her from afar—”

“I am not stalking her! I’m just keeping tabs on her whereabouts…” Kyle trailed off, having nowhere to go with his argument.

If there was one thing in my life that I was completely sure of, it was this: Kyle Hinkley had been “keeping tabs” on Lexi Reese for a year now. In my mind, that gave him certifiable stalker status.

“Kyle, you have three options. One, you give up on this obsession. Two, you talk to her. Or three, I talk to her for you.”

Kyle’s eyes narrowed, concealing his dark brown irises. “You wouldn’t dare.”

I flashed a guiltless smile, eyes widening with doe-like innocence. “Oh, I wouldn’t?”


Unknown said...

Nice set-up here! Unrequited love stories are always attention grabbers and I think this is a great concept. My only concern would be starting the story with dialogue. It can be a little jarring for the reader to be thrown in like that. Maybe a small intro paragraph first?

J Lenni Dorner said...

"was peeling in thin strips off the door" - That was a tad confusing. Perhaps because I initially pictured a person wearing a Mustang Mascot costume, that for some reason had paint on it. Took a moment to figure out there was a stencil or other art of a drawn mustang, and that is what had peeling paint. I feel foolish for the initial vision in my mind. Maybe I'm the only one? Figured I'd mention it, in case I'm not.

It's a good story. It feels familiar.

Unknown said...

I love your writing style! You have a way with words while being simple at the same time. You've definitely captured the "less is more" goal :). Great job!

amhoggan said...

I'm a sucker for this kind of story--girl helps the guy she likes win over another girl. (Some Kind of Wonderful was a favorite when I was a teenager.) My concern is that it's a premise that has been used a lot. You'll need to let us know very quickly how this story stands out.

I did have the same problem J. Lenni Dorner mentioned about picturing the mustang. That could be cleared up a little.

"If there was one thing in my life that I was completely sure of, it was this: Kyle Hinkley had been “keeping tabs” on Lexi Reese for a year now." I don't think you need the intro clause before the colon. The sentence would be punchier without it. (Plus, it reminds me of the blurb on the back cover of Twilight. But maybe that's just me.)

Overall, it seems like a lot of fun, and I'm getting a good feel for these characters. Well done.

J Lenni Dorner said...

(psst- not just you. I also heard a Twilight movie trailer playing in my head. But, given the sales numbers for that series, I assumed it was intentional.)