Friday, October 25, 2013

NOQS: EMMY & MARI, YA Contemporary

Title: EMMY & MARI
Genre: YA contemporary
Word Count: 93,000

My Main Character's Greatest Fear: 

I have 2 main characters who tell their stories in alternate POVs. Mari's biggest fears are equally being noticed and not being noticed. Emmy's biggest fear is that she is unlovable.


High school junior Emmy, perpetually on the fringes of social acceptance, thinks she’s finally found a real connection when she meets her best friend Mari. But when Mari suddenly dies from a drug overdose, blindsided Emmy is left numb and confused, wondering what warning signs she missed. Careening through her grief, she tries to fill her emptiness by accepting the unhealthy attention of eager boys.

When Emmy discovers photographs Mari left behind that lead her to a handsome but unfamiliar guy, she must decide if she wants to ask the questions that will lead her to the truth. With the help of her fellow bereavement group members, Violet and Dash, Emmy begins to put the pieces together of the friend, and friendship, she no longer recognizes.

Told through alternating voices in the past and present, EMMY & MARI is a 93,000 word contemporary novel for young adults that will appeal to fans of ELEANOR & PARK by Rainbow Rowell and PLEASE EXCUSE VERA DIETZ by A.S. King.

I have worked as a high school counselor for ten years and live outside Washington DC with my husband and daughter. In 2012, I co-founded a YA book review blog and attended Book Expo America this past spring.

First 250 words:

The first time I saw Emmy, she looked lost. Her dishwater blonde hair was waving around her ears, so much shorter than all the other girls in our class, which is what made me notice her right away. Until she entered the school, I was the only one with hair shorter than my shoulders. Long hair was cool.

Even though we were fifteen and in the tenth grade, she looked about ten. Her tiny frame was almost emaciated and her plain t-shirt and jeans hung off her body. The look in her eyes, as I spied her across the courtyard, was pure fear, like a squirrel deciding if it should cross the busy road or not. I watched her watch everyone else, trying to decide where to sit. She’d obviously eliminated the cafeteria as a viable place to eat lunch that day. I knew how she felt. It was easier to hide and not look so alone out in the courtyard where you could sit under a tree or on a bench with a book and pretend to be studying.

As she passed by me, tiptoed almost, I noticed she wore Chucks. I called out to her. “Hey.”

She took me in and the terror that washed over her face quickly turned into desperation, as if she’d decided I was the best offer she was going to get and she’d better not screw it up.

“Hey,” she replied and sat quickly, so I wouldn’t have time to change my mind. “Thanks for inviting me to sit.” I hadn’t, but I didn’t bother to correct her.


  1. SHRIEK!!!

    You can send the pages & query letter to

  2. SHRIEK!! (Please send pages/synopsis/pitch to

  3. SHRIEK! I'm intrigued! You can send pages + query to

  4. SHRIEK!

    Please send 50 pages to with REQUESTED MATERIAL: NIGHTMARE QUERY in the subject line, your query in the body of the email, and the material and a one-page synopsis attached.

    Can’t wait to read it!

  5. Shriek, please! Please send pages to with the subject line Nightmare Query.

  6. Replies
    1. Shoot! So sorry, I accidentally deleted this! It was a shriek. So, so sorry! (Remind me not to tap small buttons with my fingers on a phone.)

    2. Messing with the requests, eh? :) Good thing I'd already sent the pages!

  7. Shriek! Please send to queryroseanne at gmail with Nightmare Query in the subject line. Thanks!

  8. I'm late to the game, but would LOVE to see this. Shriek! Please send a query, pages and synopsis to