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Pitch Wars Showcase

Please note: These are the entries for the Pitch Wars season beginning in 2021 and continuing through 2022. Please note that our Agent Showcase ends at 9:00 p.m. ET on Monday, February 14, 2022. Agents will not be able to leave comments requesting material after that time.
PW2021 YA #09: VILLAVIVOS (alt-historical dystopian)
Nathalie D. Medina
Mentored by:
Sonora Reyes
Book Title:
Young Adult
alt-historical dystopian
Word Count:
Manuscript Content Warning(s):
gun violence, physical violence, police violence, street harassment, trafficking, organized crime



Marisol lives in Villavivos, a town where humans and undead Vivos live together in harmony—supposedly. But when the local all-Vivo theatre troupe is poisoned and descends into a feeding frenzy during a performance, tensions between Vivo and human grow. After receiving an encoded letter from her scientist mother, Marisol must make the dangerous trek across the wild west to find a cure, with nothing but a gun and the Vivo boy who makes her heart flutter.



All humans went veiled and scented in Villavivos, a custom meant either to help Vivos control their painful appetite for human flesh, or to protect humans from the ravages of the feral undead, depending on which way you voted. My own veil was a gauzy covering of white netting over my face, showcasing the delicate flowers stitched along the hem. Today’s scent was a soft rose and bergamot.

I hoped it paired well with my outfit: a blue shirtwaist dusted with daisies and full brown skirts. I’d hesitated between this and another outfit this morning, but the daisy print was just so charming. I wished very much to be charming today.

For no reason. Certainly not for a boy. Silly thought.

I dusted off my skirts and sat on my stool behind the counter, flipping open a copy of Entérate Vivo, the local Vivo newspaper. They had better coverage of the coming election for Mayor, and not just because they favored my sister for the position. A few customers came through—mostly Vivos, and two human girls giggling over their nerve for venturing into the neighborhood.

I told myself I was just as happy to greet one customer as the next, but whenever the door opened and the bell rang, my heart lifted, and whenever it wasn’t him, it dipped.

16 responses to “PW2021 YA #09: VILLAVIVOS (alt-historical dystopian)”

  1. Amanda Rutter says:

    I would love you to submit your Pitch Wars entry to me, using my Query Manager form: QueryManager.com/Amanda_Rutter/PitchWars Please send through the query letter and the full manuscript. If more than one Azantian agent requests materials, please pick the one you feel would fit you best.

  2. Kurestin Armada says:

    Hello, and congrats on completing Pitch Wars! I absolutely love the voice here already. Please do send the full manuscript + a synopsis attached as word docs to my attention at submissions (at) rootliterary (dot) com, with Pitch Wars in the subject line. If any of my colleagues also request, feel free to pick one of us or just mention us all and we’ll sort it on our end. Cheers, Kurestin Armada @ Root Literary

  3. Samantha Wekstein says:

    Hi Nathalie,

    This sounds so great! I’d love to read a query and first fifty pages. If you’re interested, please send them to QueryManager.com/SamanthaWekstein/PitchWars. Thank you!

    All the best,

    Samantha Wekstein

  4. Erica Bauman says:

    Hi Nathalie,

    Congratulations on completing Pitch Wars! This project sounds incredible and I was gripped by the excerpt. I’d love to read more! If you could please send your query and the full manuscript using my Query Manager link: QueryManager.com/EricaBauman/PitchWars

    And if more than one ACM agent requests, feel free to send to both—just let me know who else is reading, so I can coordinate on my end.

    Looking forward to reading more!

    All my best,

  5. Sarah Landis says:

    I’d love to read this one! Could you email the full to slandis@sll.com? Thanks! -Sarah Landis, Sterling Lord Literistic

  6. Desiree Wilson says:

    Hello! I’d love to read more of this! Would you please send your query letter and full manuscript to me at desiree@thebentagency.com?

  7. Tara Gonzalez says:

    Hi Nathalie! I know it was a line in a tweet and not this official pitch, but you truly had at me at ACAB yeehaw zombies book. I’d love for you to send this back my way! If you’re interested in submitting to me, you can reach out to me at tara@emliterary.com with the full manuscript. Thanks so much! Tara Gonzalez (Agent at Erin Murphy Literary Agency)

  8. Alex Rice says:

    Would love to see this manuscript in my inbox! Please send over the full manuscript and a synopsis to me at alex.rice@caa.com, using the subject line of “Pitch Wars Query // TITLE.” If another agent at CAA also requests, please include their name in the query as well. Looking forward to reading! All my best, Alex Rice

  9. Amanda Orozco says:

    Hi Nathalie!

    I LOVE this and I’m already hooked with this excerpt–the voice, the atmosphere, the premise–it all sounds amazing and I’d love to read more! Please send the query and full ms to amanda@transatlanticagency.com with “Pitch Wars” somewhere in the subject line.

    Feel free to submit to other agents at the Transatlantic Agency if they also request; please just let me know so we can coordinate our responses.

    Many thanks and looking forward to reading more!
    Amanda Orozco

  10. Katelyn Detweiler says:

    Hi Nathalie,

    This sounds so fresh and original! I’d love to see more. Could you please send your query and full manuscript to me at katelyn@jillgrinbergliterary.com with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line? (Please note, if multiple agents from Jill Grinberg Literary Management request your ms, we ask that you only share with one.) Thank you!


  11. Laura Bradford says:

    This one just stopped me in my tracks! I was JUST talking about WARM BODIES and how utterly charming it is. This sounds so good and totally atmospheric and I’d love to see more! Please send me the full manuscript and synopsis (as attachments) at laura@bradfordlit.com. Please put Pitch Wars in your subject line.

    Looking forward to it!
    Laura Bradford

    ***If you receive a request from more than one agent at Bradford Literary Agency, you are welcome to send to all agents who made the request, but just let us know when you send the material***

  12. Hannah Andrade says:

    Hi Nathalie! I remember reading this query ages ago and would love to take a look at this again and see how you’ve developed it! Can you please send the first 100 pages of this to me on my QueryManager (https://QueryManager.com/hannahandrade)? And don’t forget to put PitchWars in the subject line along with your project. I can’t wait to read it!

  13. Caitlin White says:

    Hi Nathalie! I didn’t know I was missing zombie yeehaw books from my life until I read your pitch! I’m so intrigued and would be thrilled to read your full! If you’re interested, you can send your query and full manuscript to my special PitchWars page here: https://querymanager.com/query/caitlinwhite/PitchWars

    I’m Caitlin and I’m with Emerald City Literary Agency. You can find me on Twitter @caitforestell. If any other ECLA agents also comment, feel free to send to any or all, and if more than one of us fall in love, we can work that out on our end! Congrats and thank you!!

  14. Becca Langton says:

    Hi Natalie
    I was really struck by your character’s distinctive voice and would love to read more. Please do query me through my email, becca@darleyanderson.com and include #Pitch Wars in the subject line. Darley Anderson is a well established global agency and I am so pleased to be building a US focussed list in a team that includes a Film and TV agent and a well experienced international rights team.
    Looking forward to hearing from you!

  15. Kari Sutherland says:

    I’m really intrigued and I’d love to read more! If you think we’d be a good match, please send the full to me using the submission form: QueryManager.com/Kari_Sutherland_Query_Form/PitchWars.

    Warm wishes,

  16. Alexandra Weiss says:

    Hi Nathalie! This sounds amazing and that last line in your excerpt is everything. I would love to request the full manuscript. If you’d like to send it my way, please upload it here: QueryManager.com/AlexandraWeiss/PitchWars2021​.

    Alexandra Weiss (she/her)
    Azantian Literary Agency