For my regular readers, these are some special posts this week as part of a pitch contest I'm providing feedback for.
For participants, welcome to my blog! I'm happy to host you and excited to see what kinds of stories you've written. Please remember that only the author of this piece and the participating judges are supposed to comment. All other comments will be deleted.
Category and Genre: Adult Science Fiction
Word Count: 130,000
When Mer York meets a charming man named Bryn in the park, she doesn’t suspect that he’s actually a civil disobedient—a Dissenter—on the run from the law. When government agents known as Company Men link her to him, Mer is thrust into a world of secret organizations in which her allegiance could mean the difference between freedom and subjugation not only for her, but for the entire country.
Traditor is a tale of adventure and romance in a society where government surveillance has grown out of control. The novel follows Mer’s transformation from a dutiful government worker to a Dissenter. Although initially intending to sabotage Bryn’s plans, Mer begins to reevaluate her beliefs when she discovers that the chip he carries was designed by Company Men to control people’s minds. Mer decides to turn traitor and fight to keep the chip safe until its existence can be made known. At the end of many adventures Bryn and Mer seem to be in the clear—until a comrade’s death leads to betrayal by one of their own.
First 250 Words:
She was never sure what woke her. Maybe there was a noise, something she couldn’t remember when she was fully awake. Maybe it was a sort of sixth sense, the feeling that lets you know you’re being watched from behind. Whatever it was, Mer opened her eyes just as the heavy moon hid its face behind a cloudbank.
She lay immobile for a moment. She often woke before her alarm, a product of years of conditioning, years of dreading the moment the buzzer would go off. Normally it was two or three minutes before, however. Judging from the darkness and the dead calm of her neighborhood Mer thought it must be much earlier: two at the very latest.
She should just go back to sleep. Maybe she ought to get up and take a pill? No, no need. Mer could feel fatigue pulling her under.
Her eyes had drifted shut, the wisps of dreams just beginning when she heard the creak.
Her first instinct was to sit up, but Mer forced herself to lie still. It was a neighbor, she told herself. Someone moving around their house downstairs.
There was another, softer this time. It’s the floorboards. This isn’t exactly a new place. Houses get old, houses groan. It’s nothing. Go back to bed.
Then she heard the creak again.