Monday, September 17, 2012

GUTGAA Pitch Contest #23 - Driven



One strobe light could trigger a seizure and end Jimmy Rickliefs’ career.

In the wake of a near-fatal accident, Jimmy’s shattered body is not able to keep up with his career as a drummer. When the band starts writing their new record, Jimmy isn’t sure he wants to go back. The thought of getting back on stage, knowing a seizure can strike, doesn’t help his lack of confidence. The fans won't accept a broken drummer.

Jimmy takes comfort from his pregnant wife’s survival. But when the baby is born twelve weeks early, his priorities rearrange themselves; his daughter is as broken as her dad. Now he’s at a crossroads, and his path isn't clear. He knows that being a rock star again will bring in good money. Without marketable skills, he can’t get another job. He won’t be providing for his family and that’s something he can’t abide. Faced with a quandary between what’s right and what’s safe, Jimmy has to weigh his options and choose between stardom and money or family and normalcy.

First 150:

Sitting around a sultry garage in Buxton, California, the members of the band Closure jammed a few ideas for their latest album. They believed in putting out the best material they could and would rather hole up in their lead singer’s garage for weeks on end than just push something out.

“Ouch.” Their drummer, Jimmy Rickliefs, dropped one drumstick and shook his hand. His turquoise hair drooped in his eyes a bit as the guys laughed at him. “What? That fucking hurt!”

Anthony Greggs, Jimmy’s best friend and the lead guitarist, shook his head, still laughing. “Only you could manage to smash your finger on the hi hat, Jimmy. Only you.”

Jimmy flipped him off, as he retrieved his stick from the floor. “Fuck you.”

“Don’t swing that way, buddy. I’m sure my wife would object.”

Aldon Smith shook his head, flipping his microphone in his hand.


  1. Yay! I love how your query turned out! :)

  2. Die a rock star or be broke - tough quandry you've set up! Good luck with GUTGAA!

  3. I remember seeing this pitch in the #PitMad stream - glad I got to find out more :) It sounds very interesting.

  4. Of course! Jimmy! Glad to see this one here. Love the "don't swing that way" line. lol! I like the dialogue. Very real. Nice job!

  5. Two small ideas. You can take them or dump them.

    Suggestion for the query would be to cut out 'his lack of' and go with 'doesn't help his confidence.' Seems like it is more zippy that way.

    For the first 150: I'd move the opening paragraph and start out with the dialogue at 'ouch'. We don't need to know where they are at this point. The dialogue is more interesting, get that up front.

  6. Good ideas, Michelle =). This is actually the...4th? 5th? new opening in the last few months. But I do like those ideas and will insert them and see how they fit.

    Carey: yes, Jimmy! :D I'm glad the dialogue works out; that's been something I've had to work on lately, making the dialogue less unnatural. =)


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