Monday, February 22, 2016

Martin's Wings

Title: Martin’s Wings
Age & Genre: Adult Romance 
Word Count: 104,000

Martin is a commitment-phobe.  He’s also a pilot.  All hail breaks loose on his wedding day as icy pellets rain from the sky and he sneaks out the church window, ditching his bride-to-be and flying home to sunny Southern California.   Countless one night stands later, he returns to podunk Pennsylvania for kooky family holidays only to find his ex on the arm of an old football rival and his relatives full of helpful sex advice. Martin’s instincts: take wing on the next Triple Seven back to Orange County.  But this runaway groom’s bolting days may be drawing to an end after a long-legged runner saunters past his wiffle ball game.

The cute blonde offers Martin a taste of her cotton candy and a taste of his own medicine as she plays flirt and flee with him.  Confident, extroverted, and a little bit wacky, Coral’s everything Martin is not.  A red-eye flight home would be easier for Martin than a game of cat and mouse with this girl.  To find his Happily Ever After and avoid flying solo forever, this pilot will need to stop running away from love and start running to it—if only he could get Coral to stick around for longer than a New York minute.

First 250 Words: 

“There’s only one way out of this room, Marty.” Uncle Lars pointed to the altar doorway. “Whether boon or doom awaits you there, no one can know.”
Thunder rattled the sacristy’s stained glass. Martin jumped. High. That’s when the rain started. Sheeting. On Martin’s wedding day. Full on roaring thunderstorm. Deluge, really. One that violently morphed into the rapid, crackling ping-ping of dropping hail.

Doom then.

Squinting out the yellow-tinted stained glass, Martin discerned a flurry of suits and dresses charging the cathedral gates. Icy munitions poured down, riddling car roofs, dinging hoods, and pelting wedding guests. “You know,” Lars said, scratching the skull underneath his erratic Einstein hair, “some cultures consider hail good luck for your nuptials.” Good luck? “There are others, however,” he continued, “who view hail as God’s retribution on the iniquities of humanity.” Bad luck. “Sin lately, Marty?” Ummm… “Did you remember your Mother’s Day gift?” Shit. “Marty! Marty! Marty! Any dick off the street can tell you Mother’s Day is the single most important 24 hours in your Mother-in-Law’s existence. Women who selflessly wipe poop off baby butts and open rent-free basements to socially backward thirty-something sons need to have some kernel of joy in their otherwise bleak lives.”

“She’s not my mother-in-law…yet,” Martin croaked, deep voice catching in his throat.

“She will be. She will be,” said Lars, pitifully attempting a Yoda-ish voice. Drawing no response, Lars shrugged. “At least you’ll get laid tonight. Another thirty years, you might not be so lucky.”


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The Judges



Visitors welcome!
Please comment as to whether this pitch piques your interest and what feedback you have about making it stronger.
Your assessments will be appreciated by the participants.


  1. Query: Your hook – Martin is a commitment phobe. Works.

    Your two paragraphs perfect for the back cover. A third paragraph about your writing credentials, platform or education would finish this query quite well.

    250 words: That second paragraph had me scratching my head. I couldn't follow the conversation or its importance to the story. Why does he exit via the window? Is it the babbling of Lars? Cause I'd have jumped too.

    Maybe a scene between Martin and Coral?

    Great effort!

  2. Thank you very much for your input. I appreciate your point of view on the interchange between Martin and his uncle. This is a Prologue which has gone through many different versions. Coral enters the story later, but I will consider reworking the Prologue to avoid Lars from taking over & boring the reader.

  3. This query paints the fun premise of your story very well and offer a taste of authors voice so Kudos. (it brought to mind Susan Elizabeth phillips type of story - and that is a huge compliment.

    While you've got a nice flow with your descriptions in the first paragraphs, I would measure and weigh each one to see if every part of that is needed. It flows nicely as is, but could be lightened. but I'd read this based on your query

    FIRST 250

    The voice is great until I get to the heavy paragraph with Lars. Part of that feels like it's weighed down with Martin's internal thoughts but as a reader, there's no time to breathe and digest - which for a non-thriller type of read... that's odd. It leaves me confused and wanting to iron that part out to get back to the pretty words.

    best of luck!

  4. Oh my, I had left comments here, and they disappeared... :( You're going to get a truncated version. Just know, I do love this :) Love your voice. Love the humor.

    Query: "He's also a pilot." This seems like a non-sequitur and should be worked in elsewhere.

    "Red eye flight home", wait, isn't he home already? Or wait, he didn't take's a little confusing, you may want to re-word. Also, "New York Minute" - I know it's a saying, but it's leaving me geographically confused because of all the place references.


    Martin jumped. High.[Use your humor here: Martin jumped higher than a frog in a frying pan (except better, because I'm not funny)]Sheets of rain began to hammer the church's roof, quickly morphing into the rapid, crackling ping-ping of dropping hail. A full on, roaring thunderstorm. On Martin's wedding day.

    Also re-word:

    Martin squinted out the yellow stained glass at the flurry of suits and dresses...

    New paragraph for Lars' dialogue. With your voice/style, you can break rules & not have separate paragraphs for MC's inner dialogue, but do italicize it... and in the first instance ONLY I would put: Good luck? Martin thought (or even mused. You could get away with that here). You won't need the thought tags later, because we get it now. Then you'd also have to do "Lars Continued" instead of "he continued".

    This is super excellent. Even with no description, I have a perfect vision of your characters and even their facial expressions. Masterful.


  5. Query: Your query makes clear the tongue-in-cheek tone of the book. I did bump on your first pun, thinking at first that it was an error.

    First 250 Words: There are issues with how your dialogue is formatted, but otherwise it seems right for the kind of story you have.

  6. Good luck Nat!
    Thanks for participating in Son of a Pitch. I was thrilled to have you on my blog. You've got talent and an interesting premise. A little more work on the dialogue and you'll be there! Good luck!


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