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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.
YA #14: A GOOD STORY IS HARD TO FIND (Contemporary Fantasy)
Amy Wagner
Mentored by:
Cole Nagamatsu
Book Title:
2018 Entries
Contemporary Fantasy
Word Count:


Elena isn’t resting peacefully in the afterlife. She’s employed by a reaper named Jasper gathering stories from the dead. But when teenagers die without a story to give, Jasper’s health deteriorates and Elena must uncover the relationship between stories and death to save him. The Gone Away Place meets Scythe.




Elena hadn’t expected eternity to have a face, let alone a cocky smile, high-cut cheek bones, and an over-gelled mop of hair that skewed toward greasy. Maybe the wisdom she sought was hidden in Jasper’s eyes, but she wasn’t allowed to look him in the eyes.

“It’s dangerous,” he’d said, wiggling his fingers like sparks might fly out the tips. “I’m not big on rules. I only have three. And no eye contact is rule numero uno.”

Elena hadn’t questioned him, because when Death gives rules, you listen. At least, at first.

She also hadn’t expected the Jell-O.

Jell-O materialized every time they were in a hospital. Mostly, it waited on the food trays, casting its bright glow over the bland main dish. But if it wasn’t already in the room it lurked close by: the mini-fridge in the staff lounge, the cafeteria, or once a hospital volunteer’s pocket. Elena hated Jell-O.

She glanced at Jasper. He worked the plastic spoon around the cup’s edge with surgical precision. It plopped to the center of his palm.

“Just like a brain, isn’t it?” He smirked at Elena before taking a bite.

Jasper was like a vaudeville show: everything played as a joke. Even if she wanted to give him the hook it would only pull her off stage too. She was stuck as his partner.

Elena straightened, it wasn’t her fault Jasper lacked manners. She refocused on the job she came to do, the story she had to reap.

6 responses to “YA #14: A GOOD STORY IS HARD TO FIND (Contemporary Fantasy)”

  1. Kaitlyn Johnson says:

    Hi Amy,

    This is such an intriguing take on reapers! I’d love to see the first 50 pages. Please submit your query, synopsis, and first 50 to http://QueryMe.Online/KaitlynJohnson/Contests. Looking forward to the read!

    Kaitlyn Johnson
    Corvisiero Literary Agency

  2. Josh Getzler says:

    I like the voice here, fresh and quirky and authentic; and It makes me want to see more. Please send first 50 (ish–wherever it breaks best) to me with query letter to jgetzler@hsgagency.com, with pitchwars somewhere in the subject. Thanks!

  3. Erica Bauman says:

    Hi Amy,

    This sounds fantastic, and I’d love to read more! Could you please send a query and the full manuscript to ebauman@aevitascreative.com and put “Pitch Wars” in the subject line?


  4. Alexandra Weiss says:

    Hi Amy! This sounds so unique and interesting! I’d love to read more. Please send a query letter and attach the first 50 pages as a Word doc with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line to alexweiss.jdlit@gmail.com.

    If more than one JDLA agent requests this, please feel free to submit to the best fit. Thank you!

  5. Melissa Nasson says:

    I’d love to read more of this! Please send the first 50 pages as a Word doc or PDF attachment to melissa@rpcontent.com with “Pitch Wars” in the subject line. Thank you!

    Melissa Nasson, Esq.
    Associate Agent
    Rubin Pfeffer Content, LLC

  6. Kerstin Wolf says:

    Afterlife and reapers? Totally my thing! And the voice! So catchy and interesting! I’d love to see the full manuscript of this. You can send me your manuscript at QueryMe.online/kerstinwolf/Pitch_Wars.