Author: Rachel Hert
Genre: YA Fantasy
Word count: 71,000
You’d think taking a blood oath would help you gain something. All it gave sixteen-year-old Zade was an uncontrollable demon sealed inside his body and a village of people who want him dead. In return he is bound to protect them and the demon gate hidden nearby from a renegade demon and his army.
Living in the mountains alone doesn’t bother Zade. The fewer people who come around the safer they are, from him as well as the demonic creatures that search for the gate. At least it didn’t bother him until Tiani showed up. Irresistibly drawn to her, he watches as she’s attacked by the creatures. He can save her, but to do so means revealing himself to the villagers. Something he has gone to great lengths to avoid. As the creatures close in, he saves her, adding a complication to his life he’s always craved for and feared: People.
As if life wasn’t complicated enough the demon sealed inside begins to break free, and the attacks by the demonic creatures increase. Unable to hold them off alone Zade must convince the people to trust him before the demon behind all the attacks shows up. He’s getting closer, and if he finds the gate he won’t just destroy the human world, but the demon one as well.
This has a much stronger sense of narrative voice, but you're right; it's not quite there yet. Watch how you change tenses; try to stay in third-person present, if possible, and avoid using the second-person "you." Rewrite the fragments in the second paragraph and switch up the wording so you don't repeat "save her." I think you need to put some proper names into the third paragraph to clarify which "he" is doing what.
BOTTOM LINE: this is a HUGE improvement over the first version. If you can smooth out the stylistic issues in the pitch and the manuscript, I'd be interested in seeing a query over at Spencer Hill.
Thanks for posting your pitches, everyone! The Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest opens tomorrow, so get your submissions in!
Speaking of submissions, keep an eye out for an announcement and call for submissions that will go up here at the Disgruntled Bear later this week.