Thursday, June 7, 2018

QK Agent Round 19: Punk Rock Waitress Rules, Women's Fiction

Title: Someone Somewhere Summertime

Entry Nickname: Punk Rock Waitress Rules

Word count: 88K

Genre: Adult – Women’s Fiction


In 1984, punk is rampant, Warhol rules, and 23-year-old Pittsburgh art student Jessica is sick of missing the excitement. In SOMEONE SOMEWHERE SUMMERTIME, Jessica sets her heart on a grad program in England she can’t afford, to bask in new wave sub-culture and hopefully emerge as a multi-media artist. Yet hometown boyfriend Drew decides they need to see other people if he’s not enough to keep her stateside. She’s single for the first time since age 17.

Hellbent on raising London tuition, Jessica and her avant-garde roommates set out to waitress in New Hope, PA, a tourist town full of river-view eateries, galleries, and alternative clubs. The girls rent a leaky basement apartment, braving waitressing chaos, slam dancers, drag shows, and co-workers of all sexual persuasions in search of the unbridled life she’s been pining for. Then Jess meets Whit, a volatile new wave guitarist who crawls through her window and makes her head spin like a record.

Lingering ex Drew shocks Jess by announcing plans to move to California, and Whit accidentally sends Jess careening off the road in his Camaro during a jealous tiff, draining her tuition savings with an ER bill. Jess is left to decide whether her attachment to both guys is a reckless personification of her cracked-glass mosaic art projects, and whether either will hinder her dream to launch an art career by studying overseas.

SOMEONE SOMEWHERE SUMMERTIME is irreverent post-punk, coming-of-age women’s fiction with romantic, humorous, and LGBTQ elements, 88,000 words. SWEETBITTER meets a John Hughes movie.

My work has appeared in The Huffington Post, Newsday, Guideposts, Seventeen, “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” and Child. I’m a former winner of Seventeen Magazine’s Art and Fiction Contest. Two of my short stories have been published in independent press anthologies in the past six months.

First Page

I’m not a good enough liar to get a job on the river side of New Hope, where the real waitresses work.

A restaurateur in a lavender silk shirt interrogates me, tapping a finger against his lips.

“Jessica Addentro,” he reads off my application. This is the seventh place I’ve visited today, and I have an hour before I have to meet the girls for a ride back to Trina’s house. My feet throb like a drum kick. But I have a security deposit to pay for, so I need a job.

I sit at Capresi’s Continental Restaurant, sheltered between the canal and a creek that zig-zags as if it’s lost its way. Trina calls this town Pennsylvania’s answer to San Francisco, where the lifestyle choices are as assorted as the menu selections. It’s an artsy tourist trap sprung between multiple bodies of water, including the Delaware River.

The restaurateur pronounces my name with an Italian flourish. “Ad-den-tro. Do you know what it means?”


“More like, versed in.” He winds his free hand in a circle. “As in, full of insights. Sound like you?”

“Depends on the subject matter,” I say. “But okay.” Sun-catchers glint behind the restaurateur amid a series of ceiling lanterns, revolving like some disjointed Calder mobile. Bookshelves and plants scream for a feather duster.

The man’s eyes flick down the page. “You live here in town?”

“Me and my roommates are moving into a place on Main Street this week.” Then life will begin.

1 comment:

  1. I'd like to see 30 pages. You can send them with a query letter to querycarlisle at with the subject Query Kombat Request - Title. Thank you!