For those of you readers who may not be aware, I will be entering my third completed novel, Defiant, into one of the most intimidating and awe inspiring competitions in the writer twitterverse: #PitchWars. Go, look it up, and if you are an unpublished author with a desire to learn from published/agented mentors, get thee to Brenda Drake immediately!
Here is my introductory post. Who I am, a little about my project, but mostly just a hello to potential mentors who may be stopping by. (Hi guys!)
Starting with the project — 5 things!
- It started as a seed of an idea back in October 2014 when I wrote the first chapter after an epiphany of a first line. No surprise that three years later that first line is no more.
- This MS is a rewrite of a previous novel I’d completed and lightly queried (with 2 partial requests!). I liked it. Betas liked it (with copious notes, of course!) but then I reread it and realized it wasn’t the book I wanted to write. I wanted darker, complex. A main character with more to lose and a broken moral compass, selfish more than selfless. Not some damsel. A Slytherin.
- Defiant is a dark YA sci-fi set 200 years in the future after a bit of climate change kills the air and everyone is forced indoors, living in Hong Kong-style high-rise cities. I love the dystopian genre and the opportunities it gives us to mess with our world, don’t you?
- The story follows Ilana Perez, the cold-hearted heir to her arctic high-rise city. Caught in the blast of a terrorist firebomb, Ilana wakes to find not only her life taken from her, but also her face–another girl is wearing it and ruling in her stead. Convinced she’s being lied to, she attacks her doctor, landing him in a coma and earning herself a two year sentence in the mines. It’s down low she takes the name Estre, the eerily familiar face staring back at her in the mirror and whose memories are slowly taking over, a painful malfunction of her life-saving surgery. She falls in with a group of thieves and vows to fight her way back upstairs. But when she discovers the role her family played in the marginalization of her people, she must choose between her desire for power and the welfare of others.
- Themes of Red Rising collide with Face/Off. There’s an anti-hero with PTSD and a bit of kissing.
Five things about me:
- My name is Delara and I’m a wordaholic. Fact. I love to talk, write, and read. Find me on Twitter: @delarathirteen
- I’m an LA based writer/producer and creative director for short form on-air promotions and marketing. Been doing this 15+ years, I now get to work from home and choose my projects. This leaves me loads of time for writing and revising and editing! (You’d think queries and pitches would be easier for me. Um. Still hard!)
- Cali born and Massachusetts raised but London is where my heart is.
- I bookstagram! Discovered it late last year and post every day, another outlet for my creativity. If you fancy stalking me on IG, I’m @bookwnoname (if you are currently humming the song by America, you and I will get along like a house on fire!!)
- I read. A lot. All of the books. Current read Prince of Fools by Mark Lawrence.
Five of my current favorite TV shows:
- The Expanse
- Game of Thrones
- The 100
Music of Defiant, five of many:
- Inception – Hans Zimmer
- V for Vendetta – Dario Marianelli
- Nine Inch Nails: Head Like A Hole
- Ruelle: Until We Go Down
- Lawless: Dear God
Current book inspiration: (sorry, can’t choose just five)
- Nevernight – Jay Kristoff
- Red Rising trilogy – Pierce Brown
- Six of Crows duology – Leigh Bardugo
- And I Darken – Kiersten White
- The Road – Cormac McCarthy
- Red Sister – Mark Lawrence
- Vicious – VE Schwab
5 6 Favorite characters: (right now)
- Kaz Brekker
- Mia Corvere
- Arya Stark
- Lada Drawlya
As a mentee you’d get these five things:
- A creative partner. I thrive on collaboration and talking about ideas. Just ask my husband. He could use a break.
- A full time writer. I’ll be dedicating time to revisions and edits should my project be chosen by you!
- A sponge. Teach me. All of the things.
- A dry sense of humor. A healthy dose of cynicism. I try not to take myself so seriously.
- Book recommendations. Did I mention I read a lot???
In summary, I am extraordinarily keen to find a mentor who can help me continue to make my manuscript sing. Perhaps a friend and critique partner when all is said and done. The most intriguing aspect of #PitchWars is the community it creates, and I’d be honored to be a part of it.
I like to end my blog posts with a line(s) I wrote that day. Here’s a passage from Defiant.
She laughed. Not out of joy but something much darker. Like it came from the center of her. The place where the pieces of a broken heart still lay jagged.
Happy bio hunting!