Have questions about submitting to Pitch Wars or just want to know what it is? Start here!


PW #203: YA Thriller: THE RUNAWAYS

Monday, 2 November 2015  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Pitchwars Badge (Square YA)Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor Name: Kim Graff
Mentee Name: Jenny Rosen
Category: YA
Genre: Thriller 
Word Count: 88,000


When seventeen-year-old Hailey unearths her U.S. Senator father’s ties to a mass murder, he hires Caleb—teenage-Casanova-turned-killer—to make her disappear. Caleb forgoes duty for runaway love; trading twisted family loyalties for Hailey’s life. Caught between dirty cops, black ops, and blood ties, they must survive the sins of Hailey’s father and expose his corruption before he buries them both.


Dad had a loaded gun for a girlfriend. He hid it under his bedroom floor. Technically, the place was off limits, but I’d never been good with imaginary lines.

Compulsive eavesdropping had its perks. These halls always buzzed with bittersweet political whispers. But the sink-your-teeth-into-Nancy-Drew-worthy-scandals never slipped through the walls, until Dad bought somebody’s soul over a cell phone call.

“Nothing’ll save you, son. I own you and keep a .45 under my bed as an insurance policy.”

Some monsters speak truth. Mom said Dad was one of them. She stormed into the living room the night before she left, newspaper in hand, broken heart splattered across the headlines, and threw it in his face. He was too busy watching his poll numbers plummet to notice.

I noticed everything–like our family falling apart because of big, bold headlines calling Dad a “bio-terrorist” and a “murderer”.

She moved out. I kept digging for black and white reasons behind our brokenness.

Nothing felt solved. Nothing made sense, until now.

I snuck in when he stepped out—tiptoed down the hallway while he hurried downstairs. He would’ve heard me if he paid attention. He never has.So I scraped my pink toenails across his expensive floors hoping he’d catch me.

Notice me.

Just once.


His voice cut through the quiet, ripping the air from my lungs. I plastered myself against the wall and waited for my body to remember how to breathe.



Filed: Pitch Wars

We're thrilled at the different ways those in our Pitch Wars community are giving back—and we encourage them to do so. However, please keep in mind that Pitch Wars is not affiliated with any of these various contests, promotions, etc., including those of our mentors and mentees. Promoting any such opportunities via our social media channels doesn't imply endorsement or affiliation. We encourage you to do your research before participating.

Pitch Wars takes a stand. ANTI-BULLYING. Click here to review our policy

Pitch Wars 2021

Blog Archives

Blog Categories

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.