Monday, February 22, 2016

Team Snow 5: THE FIRST IDOL, YA Fantasy

Genre: YA fantasy
Word Count: 77,000 words

My Main Character would use sun or snow to battle their biggest obstacle:

Amateur alchemist Johnny Trekken already harnessed the power of the sun—once, by accident—and three of His Majesty’s Royal Navy airships were bludgeoned by an enormous sword made of fire that sank them into the hungry sea. Johnny knows that those sun-driven flames still reside within his pocket watch alchemy weapon. But until he masters the watch, he can only hope it will be the sun’s power that answers when he again calls it to his defense.


Dear Agents of the Glorious Sun and the Driven Snow,

Sixteen year-old Johnny Trekken is not an alchemist. It shouldn’t matter that his great-great-grandfather’s pocket watch is the dormant First Idol, once the most legendary alchemy weapon in existence. But when he pushes the watch’s trigger and it activates for the first time in over one hundred years, he draws unwanted attention, including that of the terrifying Crimson Duchess and her power-hungry Capital benefactors. They’ll have the reinvigorated First Idol for themselves or they’ll happily take Johnny’s head!

Unable to evade his pursuers in the New World even with the help of airship pirates, Johnny is forced to rely on the First Idol to save him. But the watch is dangerous, likely to wreak wild devastation—columns of fire, tidal waves, tumultuous gravitational shifts—if used incorrectly. Luckily, Johnny has help from beyond the grave: a journal of his great-great-grandfather’s travels that may help him to understand the watch’s creation in the hopes of mastering its power. Only then, Johnny thinks, can he become a true alchemist capable of protecting both himself and Izel, the enchanting girl with whom he’s falling in love.

But the First Idol has a horrible secret. The watch is powered by gods bound to the clockwork, and Johnny soon learns that their aid comes at a high price.

In THE FIRST IDOL, globetrotting adventures reminiscent of INDIANA JONES meet the explosive magical style of Sherry Thomas’s THE BURNING SKY. Johnny battles kings, armies, and alchemists to retrace his great-great-grandfather’s journey that brought alchemy into everyday life, but may ultimately be responsible for ending it.

First 250 words:

In the center of Trekken Square—in a city known widely as the Capital of the World, but much more commonly as just the Capital—sat a simple stone obelisk, rectangular with a brass plaque atop. A woman’s fingers grazed the imprinted memorial, clearing the dust from the often neglected pillar. She smeared her dirtied hand across the front of her already filthy dress.

“In memory of Jonathan ‘The Trigger’ Trekken, Father of Invention and Progenitor of the Age of Wonders,” the woman, Catherine, read aloud. Her accent was heavy, her words as muddied as her appearance. After reflecting on the monument, she chuckled and turned to her companions. “A bit much, isn’t it?”

The sky above the Capital rolled with lazy, dark tones of gray. A storm approached with some severity, still a safe distance but swallowing more of the dusk light as each second passed. Beacons of lightning flashed and reflected off windows. The weather promised to be daunting, and most of the seafaring folk in the Seat’s kingdom moored their vessels rather than risk economic ruin.

But it was the perfect weather for the more duplicitous in nature.

Reaching past Catherine, a man with tanned leather skin hung a simple pocket watch on a chain from a nail driven into the body of the obelisk. There were already several other watches swinging peacefully there, symbolic tributes of John Trekken’ s idol—the First Idol. The man swatted his hand across them, admiring their simplicity as he recalled the legends of the watch’s incredible power.


  1. Flurry up and send the first 100 pages to me, please, at Along with a synopsis!

  2. Sounds cool as ice! Please send 50 pages and a synopsis for Team Snow!

  3. Icy! Please send the first 50 pages to rena (at) thedeborahharrisagency (dot) com

  4. I'd like to see this one too! Please send the first 50 pages as a pdf to lydia at therightsfactory dot com :)

  5. Bring on the snow! I would love to take a look at the full manuscript. Please feel free to send it along to as a word attachment. Please put the query in the email and Sun vs Snow in the subject line. Thanks!