Writer

I'm seeking representation for GHOST GIRLS, an 80,000-word work of speculative fiction for young adults. Think FANGIRL crossed with UNDEAD GIRL GANG.

To get into her dream college’s exclusive creative writing program, Ella Andrews has to submit a writing sample with her application. No big deal; writing’s always been her thing, and her estranged father even bought her a laptop to encourage her. But the sample asked for is longer than anything she’s ever written, and Ella’s anxiety won’t chill out long enough for her to come up with the perfect idea.

An idea finally presents itself when Neesha, a girl from Ella’s school, confides that strange things have been happening at her house, and she suspects a ghost is causing them. Ella is skeptical, but teaming up with Neesha to hunt the ghost is exactly the unique experience she needs to write a killer application. So what if ghosts aren’t real? But when strange things start happening—including a food tornado in the school cafeteria—even Ella can’t deny that something freaky is going on.

After the food tornado, Ella and Neesha are joined by popular-girl Micah, the only other student brave enough to record the ghost’s destructive behavior instead of run from it. With their arsenal of a Ouija board, an EMF meter, and Micah’s fancy camera, they study the ghost in an effort to banish it. Ella’s skepticism vanishes as the attacks increase. The food tornadoes turn into flying rocks and exploding lights, and people are getting hurt.

Ella’s anxiety over balancing her application and the ghost hunt leads to a fight with Neesha and Micah. Ella can’t take back the things she’s said, but she’ll have to take control of her anxiety to reunite with her friends—the only people in town who don’t think the escalating destruction is just misbehaving students. While the ghost makes great story fodder, Ella and her friends must solve their ghost problem, or the next attack could kill someone.

Here's a little taste of GHOST GIRLS:

To me, nostalgia tastes like grape shave ice. There’s a shave ice shack at the entrance to the neighborhood I lived in as a kid; I used to get a treat there with my dad every Sunday when I was in elementary school. Purple has always been my favorite color, so Dad ordered a grape shave ice for me the first time. And I don’t love change, so grape has been my go-to flavor ever since.

I don’t live in Mercer Corners anymore, but it’s only a twenty-minute walk away. So to celebrate the start of my senior year, I walked down to the Corners and bought a shave ice with the last of my allowance. The guy who took my order said it was cool that my ice would match my hair, the tips of which I’d dyed purple before leaving my dad’s house two weeks ago. I told him that was the whole point, they were both purple, and then he laughed. It wasn’t funny, but I didn’t want him to spit in my shave ice the next time I came around, so I pretended to laugh, too.

After obtaining my treat, I walked around Mercer Corners, just for something to do. I stayed on the side of the neighborhood closest to the shave ice stand; I didn’t like walking past our old house. The people who bought it painted it yellow, which I hated, and added a chain-link fence, which my mom hated. My thoughts idly bounced around, not stopping on anything important, until I ran out of shave ice not far from Tristan Daniels’ house. Tristan and I were best friends in elementary school. I hadn’t been to his house since I was eight years old. I didn’t move away from Mercer Corners until I was twelve, but the last four years of our friendship had been spent entirely at my house for reasons unknown to me.

As I recalled, the Daniels’ front yard was often overgrown, but it wasn’t anymore. Tristan himself was mowing the lawn. Thin earbud cords ran from his ears to his back pocket; that, combined with the noise from the mower made me decide not to try to talk to him. It would be weird, anyway. I wouldn’t know what to say after “Hi.” Maybe “Your lawn looks nice.” Compliments were good ice breakers. I’d read that somewhere.

It was too bad that Tristan and I weren’t friends anymore. Seeing his house again brought back a wild rush of memories; I’d come up with stories, and Tristan would illustrate them. We had our own comic strip called Bobtown for a few months that was mostly fart and vomit jokes, because ten-year-olds are gross.

I had almost decided that I would, actually, talk to him, but as I got closer, I could see that his face was flushed, and the muscles in his jaw stood out. Whatever flame of bravery had lit inside me faded away. I would just walk by and pretend I hadn’t noticed him. Like I’d been doing in the halls the last three years of high school.

Neesha Lawrence lived next door to Tristan. We were in the same math class this year. Her family’s trash can was out on the curb for collecting; maybe if Tristan wasn’t looking I would slip my empty shave ice cone inside. Some people were particular about things like trash cans. I didn’t know Tristan well enough anymore to determine if he’d think I was weird for slipping something inside a random trash can.

I stood on the sidewalk, thinking about trash cans and social taboos, when a dinner plate crashed through the Lawrences’ front window and struck me on the forehead.






I have another YA novel in my back pocket, called RESET. If you remember this post, it's the book I signed on with Jill Corcoran to represent. RESET was not submitted to publishers before Jill left agenting, and I hope it manages to find a home someday.

When the universe resets itself, no one notices—except for Lia Tobin. Since she was six years old, Lia’s been able to recognize when the universe has erased the future and given her a chance to live life differently. The flip side of this gift? She can’t control when it happens.

After the disappearance of her 10-year-old sister, Lia would give anything to be able to make the universe reset itself so she could have a chance to save Maddy. But the universe is uncooperative, which forces Lia to live through the rest of her senior year as the girl with the missing sister, watch her parents’ marriage dissolve, and finally discover Maddy’s body. All without a single chance at a do-over.

Until her former classmate, Jay Garza, is murdered, and the universe resets six months. Suddenly, Lia’s dream has come true: she has a chance to save her beloved little sister. But by being hyper protective of Maddy, Lia completely ignores Jay, until the universe makes it clear that his life is a priority, too. Choosing between Jay and Maddy seems like a no-brainer, until Lia meets someone else who recognizes the resets. She learns that ten years in the future, Jay is a celebrated researcher on the brink of developing a cure for cancer. Saving Jay now feels like saving the whole world.

But then Maddy disappears again. In fact, every time Lia focuses on protecting Jay, Maddy disappears. When Lia shifts her attention back to Maddy, terrible things happen to Jay. Lia is reset to avert each catastrophe, but she knows she must do more than fix things—she’s got to find out who’s responsible. As she knows only too well, the universe could stop resetting whenever it chooses, leaving Jay or Maddy to a terrible fate.

RESET is a 75,000-word work of speculative fiction for young adults that crosses EDGE OF TOMORROW with BEFORE I FALL.