Monday, October 30, 2017

NoQS Minion 14: Two Tails of Amaya, YA Contemporary Dark Fantasy Ownvoices

Genre: YA Contemporary Dark Fantasy #ownvoices
Word Count: 69,000

My MC and MA (main antagonist) are dressed as:

With a wolf stalking their town, Amaya and Bax become inspired by folklore and both dress up as Little Red Riding Hood. Amaya couldn’t feel more like Red if she tried— a wolf killed her family and is hunting her. She finds the irony of her costume amusing, embracing her life’s crazy parallel to the American folktale. Bax would dress up as Little Red because he thinks, like Red, he’s smart enough to defeat the wolf.


Amaya, a transcendental Japanese fox (kitsune) hiding as a teen girl, is the new student at Radley High. Having just moved to America, the adopted sixteen-year-old is grateful to step into a brand-new life. A life where she no longer needs to look over her shoulder, worrying about the demon wolf hunting her. A life where she can move on from her family's death. But her elation is shattered when she learns she’s sitting in a dead girl’s chair, a girl struck by a truck driven by an unknown driver.

Students begin to gossip about the hit and run, claiming the town’s beloved lacrosse team may have been involved. Amaya keeps her distance from the rumors and befriends Sam Warren, a brooding loner with a sexy tattoo, and the only human she’s met resistant to her kitsune mind-altering powers. Unable to alter his perception of her, she finds herself conflicted between kitsune values of lying and manipulation and the human value of honesty. But both value loyalty. When the dead girl’s best friend starts to point fingers at Sam’s brother—captain of the lacrosse team—being the driver, Amaya helps Sam investigate to find the truth.

Amaya’s forced to confront her past when members of the lacrosse team are killed by a demonic wolf—the same wolf who killed her family after she brought shame to the God of Lightning. As the clues pile up and the wolf closes in, Sam and Amaya are drawn closer together and Amaya finds herself falling in love with him. Amaya longs to tell Sam she’s a mystical fox, but in her experience, humans only see her as a monster. And she’s not ready to lose him. When the wolf closes in, facing her enemy might be the only way to keep the boy she loves alive.

First 250 words:

The tumultuous, smoky clouds hiding the pale morning sun perfectly reflect my mood. It’s bad enough starting a new school in December as a junior in high school, but walking there because my mom’s—my adoptive mom’s—mini-van wouldn’t start… not fun.

It’s cold. Not the normal kind of cold. It’s Afton, Minnesota, piercing to the bone cold.

Wish someone would’ve warned me winter is the biggest asshole. I shove my hands deeper into my pockets of my silver parka. An oncoming gust launches loose snow from the ground like tiny missiles, and I squint to retain my vision.

Today is supposed to be a triumphant entry into my first American school. Instead I’m slipping on the frozen sidewalk, arms flailing about like a spastic ballerina as I attempt to avoid biting it in front of suburban commuters on their way to work. The rubber soles of my boots offer no traction. Not like my claws. How I long for the sprightliness of my true form.

Naked trees line the avenue, layers of frost turning their white bark into glistening silver.

But they aren’t real trees. Real trees are wild and unruly things, giants towering above the world, blotting out the sunlight with their massive brown limbs. They guard the lives hidden within the forests, keeping the secrets of ancient tales and magical creatures. And I haven’t seen them in three years.

I swipe at the tears gathering in the corners of my eyes.

I miss Japan and ancient forests surrounding Miyama. I miss home.

1 comment:

  1. SHRIEK. Please send query + the first 50 pages as a word doc attachment to Looking forward to reading more!