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Sunday, 28 October 2012  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Genre: Contemporary/Magical Realism
Category: Young Adult
Word Count: 79,000

Three Sentence Pitch:

Former private schooler, Matt, uses an aloof genie to get out of his crappy bully-filled public school. But the genie doesn’t use magic; he “makes things happen,” which apparently translates to “ruins everything.” Now Matt’s scrambling to fix his life, avoid a bully and woo a girl, all while his genie is setting buildings on fire for funsies.

Question 1: In your MC’s voice, what costume character do you relate most to and why?

I’d like to think I’d be Iron Man, because he’s a great problem solver. Also, people tend to love to hate Tony Stark, which unfortunately, seems to be the case for me as well. He learns from his mistakes though, and I’m definitely all about that. I’m also all about his cool facial hair. 

Question 2: As an author, what makes your manuscript a tasty treat (aka marketable/unique)?

The Unfortunate Wishes of Matthew Watson is a YA book with a nerdy boy protagonist (I know, totally original). No one loves or hopes to fall in love with the one supernatural being that appears–he’s kind of an asshole. It’s like a contemporary Aladdin set in high school. Think “I love you Beth Cooper” with a slightly malevolent genie.

First 200 words:

Two inches.
That’s all that separated Matt’s face from toilet water. Used toilet water.
“Give it to me! I know you have it,” said the surprisingly strong boy holding Matt’s neck.
“I don’t have anything, please…” Matt squeaked.
“You do, I know you do.”
And he did. Why wouldn’t he have his homework? Matt had a perfect completion record; every assignment turned in on time since the first grade—a record ten years running. Handing over his homework meant breaking the streak, and he was already passed the halfway point in his pre-college education. If the thug holding him hostage wanted homework, he’d have to get it from someone else.
But the smell. Dear god the smell.
It was like warm liquefied garbage. Poured from a human into a slimy porcelain dumpster. In essence, shit.
“I can let you up. We don’t have to do it this way. You’re making it worse for yourself. Just give it to me.”
“You…you don’t even know me!” Matt whimpered.
The age old you don’t know me argument. Matt had seen it used on talk shows, bad movies, and even hallway disagreements in this very school. 
“Oh, I know you.”

Filed: Contests, Misc

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