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/Fantasy
Word Count: 90,000
In Talisman, ordinary people are drawn to ordinary objects with the power to fill the holes in their lives. A plain young woman discovers a mirror that transforms her into whatever person she wants to be. A hopeless gambler finds a lucky coin. A blind girl obtains glasses that enable her to see. The main protagonist, Adam—a millennial stuck in a mind-numbing job, with no girl, no prospects, no purpose—finds a key that enables him to summon untapped willpower and envision possibility. So of course he has no idea what to do with it. That’s when Adam meets Delilah and is drawn into the middle of a secret war between the Order, which believes the talismans are the key to natural selection, and the Following, which believes the talismans herald the Second Coming and that Adam may be the martyr for whom they’ve been waiting. So Adam must find his true purpose, decide whether he can trust Delilah, and avoid becoming a casualty.
First 250 Words:
A darkness without end, she had been born without sight. She likes to think that the fleeting memory of being born into the world, a world of light and movement, was real. Her doctors had ignored such reminisces.
If true, no matter how unlikely, it is unimportant now. What is more cruel, a child who could once see or one who would never know the loss? Such questions were philosophical.
She likes to imagine red. It seems pure. Is it like "sharp" or "hot"? Is it "blaring" or "piercing?"
There are those who muse that one person's red could look blue to another and vice versa. The subject and the name would be the same, the experience divergent. Who can tell?
Some brains were wired differently. They could smell green or see sweet. It was all a matter of perception, not worse, just different. She had consoled herself with such thoughts.
The doctors had given her mother too much oxygen or perhaps it was the nurses. They had not heeded the monitors. She had been a newborn. Her mother died giving birth to her. Everyone said there was nothing that could have been done.
She did not accept that. Her attorney had won compensation. She got A's studying Braille high school text books. Some things just happen. Some things people make happen.
The apartment building is quiet but not silent. The floors creak. Someone is moving about behind a closed door.