Monday, July 21, 2014

IWTN Entry 17, One on One, YA Contemporary Romance

Wordcount: 85,000
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance


Lone Breeze Ranch is sixteen-year-old Gigi Smith’s personal definition of being benched, indefinitely. Transplanted to the Texas Hill country to help care for her ailing grandfather, she traded San Francisco and her coveted spot on the varsity basketball team for a Stetson and stinking horse stalls. All she wants is home.

For Rider James, the ranch manager’s seventeen-year-old son, home isn’t where his heart is. He yearns to grab college by the horns, but his broken family keeps him corralled behind Lone Breeze’s wrought-iron gate. And although she makes a dang good opponent on the court, dealing with Gigi, the boss’ granddaughter, is just…work.

As Grandpa Smith’s Alzheimer’s worsens, the Smith and James families scramble to save the failing ranch. When a generation-old legend of Lone Breeze’s buried treasure surfaces, Gigi’s convinced finding it is the only way back home, though Rider thinks it’s a dead end. As her search heats up, so does their friendship. Their love of basketball isn’t the only thing they have in common, but Rider’s life is already a hot mess without crossing the James/Smith line. But when Grandpa goes missing, Gigi and Rider must team up to find him—and maybe, that treasure. If they can’t, they’ll lose everything they call home, and each other.

First 250 Words:

Bounce the ball twice. Tuck it into chest. Breathe.

It was a mantra ingrained into Gigi’s brain.

Practiced before each free throw and said aloud, those words were supposed to help her sink the basketball into the hoop. 

Thirty percent of the time, the mantra worked. Somehow, three out of ten times she was called to the line, it quelled her fear of the spotlight, and she showed the basket who was boss.

Now, as she unfolded herself out of her father’s Passat, in wrinkled clothing and with a crick in her neck, she hoped it worked off the court, too. With nothing between her and the white farmhouse but an uneven brick path and the basketball she clutched at her belly, she inhaled. Then exhaled.  


The driver’s side door slammed from behind her and her dad’s mammoth shadow swallowed hers. His fingers found their place on her shoulders and massaged down just as he would right before a game. His pep talk should’ve been next, along with a planned curse word or two to fire her up in prep to face the opponent. He’d always said the right words to bring her heart rate down from flight to fight. But this wasn’t a game. They were far from the courts, from everything she called home. And the two strangers at the end of the walkway were supposed to be on her side—they were family.

He said, “Now, you don’t need to be nervous.”


  1. I would like to see the first fifty pages and synopsis to, also please put contest name in subject line.

  2. I would love to see the first 50 pages. Please send as a word doc attachment, with the query letter pasted on the first page, to

  3. I'd like to see the first 50 pages. Please send as a Word .doc attached to and include in the subject line request from this contest and my name