Genre: YA Sci-fi
Word Count: 90,000.
Special Question: If your main character could be any Star Wars character, who would they choose and why?: If Star Wars existed in the world of GENESIS, Kali would choose to be Luke Skywalker. She’d be able to connect with a number of his core values—his loyalty to his friends (no matter how few), his desire to protect weaker people, and his willingness to follow rules (at least until another, more expedient method to solve the issue is found).
35 Word Pitch: Disguised as a boy, Kali enlisted to fight the mutated beasts terrorizing the world, but now must prevent the general’s assassination. If she fails, the army will fragment, the beasts will win—and she’ll die.
First 250 Words:
Steel, heated by the sun, sliced through the skin of Kali’s shoulder—first blood.
Grimacing, Kali ducked under her opponent’s next strike before backing into the shadows cast by the cathedral. She shivered at the sudden chill and examined the wound; it was shallow. I can still win this. She rolled her shoulders. I will win this.
The cheers and screams from the audience were loud and hard to ignore. An overripe jamberpeach struck the ground next to Kali’s foot. A bookie shouted, “Last call! Place your bets here!”
Across the arena, Nia grinned but didn’t press the advantage, flicking blood from her sword. “Running scared?” she asked, panting. She was favoring her left leg, her simple blue tunic stuck to her dark skin, and her hair was a mess of flyaway curls.
Kali shook her head and blew her bangs away from her eyes. “You’re the one wheezing. Why should I be afraid?” Gripping her sword’s sweat-soaked hilt, she gulped down muggy air that smelled of a coming autumn storm and the rotten fruit strewn around the outdoor arena.
Nia dashed forward.
Scraps of metal, broken tech, and shattered glass crunched underfoot as Kali met the other girl halfway. Their blades shrieked, grating against her heightened hearing.
The memory of her mother’s voice snapped at her. You know more than twenty ways to kill her. Do it, Specimen K-3-55.
Kali faltered and took a step back.
Nia broke the stalemate, punched Kali, and swept her feet out from under her.