When You Get the Shingles & Pitch Madness is Happening

Hello all my peeps! Sorry I was M.I.A. last week…I got the frickin’ shingles! Holey nastiness. What you wanna do when shingles hits the fan, is cancel everything, stay in bed, moan – lots of moaning helps with the sympathy, drink buckets of fluid, ingest Tylenol till it’s comin’ out the wazoo, and…oh wait! Pitch Madness submission is March 10th! Who has time for shingles? So, I looked at that painful rash (size of a dime) and said, “oh, hell no! Na-ah, don’t come up in here with that nonsense.” My inner-Will Smith comes out at these badass moments…also when I’m really scared watching horror movies.

What I really did was run straight to the doctor last Wednesday! Since I got there within the first 24 hours of any symptoms they were able to get me on anti-viral and antibiotic, ass-kicker meds. Sounds lovely, right?

Although not 100%, I was not going to miss playing in #Pitchmadness, a twitter pitch contest, hosted by the awesome Brenda Drake @brendadrake, along with some other authors I follow/read, Summer Heacock @fizzygrrl, Rebecca Weston @callmebecks, and Sharon Johnston @ S_M_Johnston. Hopefuls, like me, send a pitch of 35 words- NO MORE! And the first 250 words of their polished manuscript for the chance to land an agent. You can read more about it at http://www.brenda-drake.com. I submitted my New Adult Mystery, JESSICA MARCO P.I.

New Adult is a relatively new term. It categorizes the age between young adult and adult. Think, first job, first apartment, mistakes and discoveries a person makes when just starting out as a grown up. For me this category offers boat loads of funny material. I also write YA but I felt like the NA Mystery was right for this contest. Here’s what I sent:

Finding who took Fat Sal’s skin—literally—is an unusual case for P.I., Jessica. Discovering her scumbag brother-in-law in the middle of it, gets her kidnapped, fighting to save her own skin. Nothin’ like family.

250 Words
It had been an hour or so, since climbing a tree to the second floor, where I waited in a tight squat position for my mark, a cheating husband. My ass was throbbing and my left foot fell asleep about twenty minutes ago. Purple bloated clouds churned in an August sky as a storm rolled in, fat rain drops hissing on the still hot pavement. A crack of lightening lit the sky and I pulled back trying to become one with the siding, gaining some cover from the gutter above. I tucked my bag underneath my army green rain poncho loaded with camera, recorder, pepper spray, and stun gun. The camera had night vision capability and the recorder could pick up a dog fart a mile away. The other stuff I kept just in case. Just in case the person I was watching got a hold of me and decided he/she didn’t want to fess up to what I captured on tape or camera. As a private investigator I use what I’ve got to get the job done, and if I have to zap someone, I use my long legs to run like the wind before they wake up.

I checked my watch. One hour and forty-five minutes waiting for this douchbag like a jackass in the rain. PJ Benedillo, the husband in question, was possibly doin’ the neighbor, a college girl with a great body and, if she was doing anything with PJ, she must have no brains at all.

I love this story! I’m not sure if I’m supposed to say that, being the author, but I do. As a twenty-four year old newbie private investigator, Jessica gets herself into some crazy situations. She’s also the one charged to fix everything when her family drama erupts, which is five seconds after her sister bursts into town. There are parts of the book that are laugh out loud funny and then there are parts that are holy-crap-quickly-turn-the-page to find out what happens next. I had so much fun writing this one, researching private investigation services, talking to police officers, who I gotta say are the BEST! Putting Jessica in the right atmosphere and giving her a love interest that wouldn’t totally take over the story but give it some Ooo-la-la! And then surrounding her with an interesting cast of characters – her family for one; an eccentric mother who has a weird laundry fetish, a widower grandfather who has a different date every night, her drama queen of a sister and a nice old Italian lady for a landlord, the only one on the planet who can’t cook. The smell is so bad it often chases Jessica out of her apartment! It’s got a tight plot with unexpected twists and turns needed for a mystery. I came up with the idea after reading a news article about a company taking and selling tissue – skin- illegally. I know, gross right? But you can just imagine what kind of fictional fun a writer can have with that!

And that’s all I’m saying for now. You’re going to have to read the book when it comes out. And believe me, I will let you know when that happens. Count on it! Keep you’re fingers crossed for me, prayers, happy thoughts, universe chanting, what ever positive waves you’ve got! 🙂

Peace my friends! Until next time…

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