Manuscript Status: Finished
Mentor Name: Margarita Montimore
Mentee Name: Sarahlyn Bruck
Genre: Women’s fiction with speculative elements
Word Count: 92,000
Sentenced under the new obesity laws, Nora is sent to Fat Camp, where she’s forced to diet and exercise until she’s “fit” enough to return to society. Now she must decide whether to conform, or fight the law, which could cost her marriage, her career, and her freedom. Orange is the New Black meets The Biggest Loser meets 1984.
As soon as I slid the pan of blondies out from the oven, there was a sharp knock on my front door. Thump thump thump. It was a knock with purpose. A knock that meant business. A knock that insisted I answer right now, before whoever was on the other side kicked the door down.
I gaped at the warm blondies, which made the kitchen air rich with the scent of butter and chocolate. My oven-mitted hands shook. My legs refused to move. The thought of remaining quiet and still flitted through my mind. Was avoidance even possible? I hadn’t hid under a bed or in a closet since my childhood hide-and-seek days. Maybe if I crouched behind the kitchen sink, holding my breath, whoever was on the other side of the door would give up and leave.
But the rapping on the door didn’t let up. Unrelenting knuckles on hard wood—whoever it was seemed to know I’d be home, like they had been watching me.
God, I just can’t win. I had meticulously planned on this alone time to bake away my anxiety, which increased with each BMI violation. Butter and chocolate and bleached white flour were all I needed to transport myself away from the crush of judgment about my size. I know, I know, blondies aren’t going to solve my weight problem, but they’re such good company when I’m trying to hide from the world.