Saturday, February 1, 2014

SVS AGENT Round Entry 13: SIDEWALK CHALK, MG Contemporary Fantasy

Genre: MG contemporary fantasy
Word Count: 38,000

My Main Character is most uncomfortable with: 

Working with 3-D chalk on the sidewalk keeps me outside so I have to say snow gives me the creeps. 

I'm okay with the first few flakes, they're pretty as they come swirling down. Even the first inch of a fresh snow can be brushed off without too much damage. But then there are the snow storms, blizzards, whiteouts, and snow drifts a mile high. 

By the time the plows come, my drawings are gone. If they're not gone, the melting and the run-off will certainly wash it all away like somebody's turned on fire hydrants from all directions. 


Dear Sun and Snow Worshippers,

Thirteen-year-old Jake meets Galen, an artist whose brain-meltingly awesome works of 3-D Sidewalk Chalk Art serves as a portal to the magical worlds beneath the streets of New York. 

Desperate for adventure, one of his friends runs down the steps into a drawing and sets off a chain of events that lead to the most annoying kid in school following the steps on his own to see what he's been missing. The next morning Jake finds the kid's boat-sized footprints in the chalk, along with paw prints of the hundreds of creatures that crawled out behind him.

Using weapons of water, an army of their own, and tricks they’ve seen like a thousand times in cartoons, Jake and his friends must find the creatures and destroy them. If they fail, New York will be overrun and the door to these worlds will remain open forever.

SIDEWALK CHALK is 38,000 words of The Goonies meets Despicable Me, if The Goonies were sidewalk-painting, monster-hunting, minion-leading, middle schoolers with chalk creatures crawling out of their drawings issues.

First 250 words:

Sidewalk chalk is only good for two thingsOne is to draw the bases in the middle of the streetthe other is to fill the extra-long socks of your extra-long older brother so you can beat some of your best friends with it on Halloween.

Or so I thought.

I stumbled on the third and most awesome use for sidewalk chalk when my mom picked me up from school to drag me halfway down 5th Avenue toward my piano lesson.

Up on 53rd Street tons of people were standing in front of St. Thomas Church. With my feet moving faster than my brain, I ran toward them, passing my mom and forgetting all about my showdown with that stupid piano.

The crowd kept growing and I still couldn't see a thing. With one gigantic, LeBron-like leap I caught a glimpse of a man on his knees drawing, and next to him was the biggest box of sidewalk chalk I’d ever seen.

Squeezing through the mob, and finally popping out on the other side, I watched his hand move — no, glide — over the sidewalk, first color blocking the chalked outlines, then smoothing the color out, and finally blending it in.


By the time he was done it looked like the earth had opened up, large chunks of sidewalk had fallen away, and the most amazing world appeared thirty feet below the street.

The depth made me dizzy. The longer I looked in, the more I could feel myself being pulled over the edge. 


  1. This polar bear totally digs 3D chalk art, pls send the first 50 pages to dawn AT redsofaliterary DOT com

  2. Brrr it's cold in here and I'm digging this chilly query. Please send the first 25 pages, synopsis and query to chquery [at] mcintoshandotis [dot] com