Manuscript Title: LITTLE BLACK BOX
Category/ Genre: YA contemporary
Word Count: 56,000
35-word Pitch: No one knows 16-yr-old Charlie’s the school’s Advice Doctor, prescribing chocolate and music in her coveted cure kits. But when her best friend turns in a symptom sheet for betrayal, Charlie’s perfect remedy is revenge.
If your MC was an Easter egg, what flavor would she be?
I would be a red velvet Easter egg, the same flavor as the pancakes my dad’s boyfriend always makes.
Excerpt (first 300 words):
It was only last week that I’d overheard Penny Hill spilling her guts in the girl’s D-wing bathroom, and the acoustics in there are fabulous. Through the whole of her weeping, I couldn’t stop thinking about Joan Jett and how she was way too badass to care if people talked behind her back. She would have given them the finger and lived her life.
Unfortunately, Penny Hill was not a kick-ass female rocker, and she did care if people talked about her. That’s what the black box in my lap was for, a package filled with books and music and other ways to help her move on.
“How well do you know Penny?” Luke asked, glancing at me from the driver’s seat. He stayed well within the speed limit as we passed Taco Bell and headed to the Valley.
“You’re not supposed to use real names,” I said.
Luke smiled, the dimple in his cheek only a shadow in the dimness of the car. “You know we mute real names.” He flicked a glance at the video camera secured on his dashboard. “We’re almost there, black box at the ready.”
“For the record,” I say to the camera, “this excursion is brought to you by Joan Jett and all the other girls out there who are through putting up with shit—”
“Language. I have to mute that, too.”
“Bad Reputation” blared on the speakers, and I sang along in my throatiest rocker voice until Luke laughed.
Luke was the only one who knew about my double life. I needed a partner in crime, so he’d agreed to be my chauffeur. I’d also agreed to let him film tonight: a documentary featuring me as the emotional doctor, prescribing various forms of cheer to people after life had knocked them on their asses.