MENTOR: Dahlia Adler and Monica B.W.
TITLE: The Hit List
GENRE: YA Contemporary
WORD COUNT: 77,000
35 WORD PITCH: After her rape, sixteen-year-old Sadie finds dancing with a partner hard enough. But when she suspects he’s a player in a web-based sex game, she must confront his betrayal and her feelings for him.
Music crashes down around my body, the bass vibrations sending tingles along my skin. My core flexes and tightens instinctively. My mind wraps around the beat and I automatically tap out the eight count on my thigh. A smile spreads across my face when the perfect moment arrives.
My muscles pull and glide in perfect coordination. Effortless movement. At least it looks that way. Getting to this point took me years. To know the correct position by feel. To make it look flawless.
This is home. The safest place in my world.
Tension radiates through my body and my leg doesn’t extend the way it should as an unwanted thought slips into my mind. The letter should arrive any day. The one that seals my fate for the next two years. Either I’ll be dancing at the Los Angeles School of Performing Arts or I’ll be stuck in New York, doomed to try to make it as a dancer on my own with all the other wannabes the city has to offer.
Movement catches my eye and I do my best to ignore my best friend, Taylor, who runs full speed into the room and almost crashes into a parent. She bounces on the balls of her feet in barely-contained excitement. Her reaction isn’t unusual, but I find myself watching her for a few seconds, wondering what the gossip of the day is. She holds something white in her hand and I falter coming out of a pirouette.