Monday, September 17, 2012

GUTGAA Pitch Contest #35 - Dark Sand


DARK SAND
WOMEN'S FICTION/SUSPENSE
96,146

Query:
 
ALEXA UNDERWOOD’S near-perfect life has just been rudely interrupted. Abducted by her mentally unstable brother, the pampered college student is being taken to a remote commune in the Arizona desert.  The self-appointed ruler of the compound is a maniacal man whose singular goal is to repopulate the new world following the Apocalypse. Or so he claims.
 
Brilliant and beautiful, Alexa is told that she has been chosen, along with other young women, to bear exceptional children. She is told it is a place of redemption for the worthy. But what Alexa finds at the compound is a rag-tag group of apprehensive people living in deplorable conditions under Thomas’s strict rule. She immediately suspects that they are hiding something in their blank-faced, hushed exchanges.
 
The reason they are there has nothing to do with the end of days. It has to do with the greed of three men who lack compunction. Men who do the unthinkable to women; they use them for monetary gain. 
 
Alexa is out of her element in this harsh place. Yet she can’t sit idle while a malevolent man crushes lives, knowing she is next in line. Determined to find a way out for herself and the other hostages of the compound, she embarks on a quest to reveal Oceania’s dark secrets. What she uncovers shakes her to her core, and she finds in order to save her own life she must do the unthinkable herself.

First 150:
  
CHAPTER ONE
 
Stinging, bitter smoke clawed at my nostrils, dragging me from a sleep so deep I could have been in a coma. My mouth was dry and full of cobwebs, and my tongue felt like an Eggo waffle that had been forgotten in the freezer sometime last year. At first I thought my lips had bits of paper glued to them. Then I realized it was just my skin, as it peeled away in curly little shreds from the tender tissue underneath. As the smoke seeped into my lungs, some corner of my groggy brain realized that whatever was burning smelled like rubber, or maybe plastic with just a hint of kerosene. And it stank.
 
Very slowly I cracked my eyes open. Suspended above my head was a arched ceiling of bright blue. Dark, looming shapes reached across ominously, grasping for something unseeen. I felt oddly numb and more than a little disoriented. 

5 comments:

  1. Your description in your first 150 words is amazing! As for your query, I think it could be tightened up a bit. Of course she's out of her element- who would be IN their element in a place like this?? So certain things could be taken out, but overall, very strong start.

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  2. I agree that it's a strong start and unique premise! There is almost too description/detail and I started to get a little lost. But trim it a bit and it will be amazing. Good luck!

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  3. What an interesting premise. I'd definitely read on to find out what's happening here.

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  4. Oooh freaky opening. Sounds like an intense story, in a good way.

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  5. I love how descriptive your 150 is!! Nicely done. Best of luck :)

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