Pitch | R01 (Part 1 of 4)

There are 16 Workshop Participants who’ve each pledged to write a short story worthy of being entered into a competition or putting it up for public consumption!

home page Every Monday and Wednesday there will be a Post going up with 4 Participants and their Submissions based on whatever Round currently happening. Round One consists of The Pitch and below you will see the first 4 of 16 Pitches. The Genre for the Pitch will be listed along with the Discord/Reddit name of the person who submitted it.

Please leave all CONSTRUCTIVE comments on their Pitch in the comments below!

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When East Saint Paul loses one of its staple residents to a hit and run, Tony fights tireless to bring justice to Felyn Reynolds. But when he starts receiving threatening phonecalls, he discovers for himself that Felyn’s death was not a random act of violence. Trusting nobody, Tony takes to the streets in the search for the truth in this mystifying Film Noir taken to the page.

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In a world run on smart implants and viral programming, the security of those implants is thought to be impenetrable.  When Ronson Fitzgerald watches a man die of heart failure in line at Starbucks, however, he quickly learns that people’s implants can be hacked into after all.  It’s only a matter of time before his own arm is turned against him and it’s a race to find a cure before it’s too late.

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While staying with her cousins as her family’s farm undergoes construction, Ashlyn Warren joins the neighborhood kids in playing a game of manhunt in the woods behind their house. When she ignores their instructions to perform the safe passage ritual, she accidentally invites a new player to the game, a dangerous entity intent on devouring the kids. Now Ashlyn must complete the game without being caught, or allowing anyone else to be.

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About E.L. Drayton

Writer of novels, short stories, scripts, and reviews.
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  • Kamary

    1. The premise sounds really go. It does seem a bit more of a mystery than a tragedy. I suggest maybe making the relationships between the victim and protagonist clearer. Also, if the victim’s full name is know, it might be a good idea to mention Tony’s in the pitch too, unless it’s plot important. I think this is very good pitch. I’d really like to see the conclusion.
    2. I’m really interesting to see how this is a comedy. Body hacking seems really interesting though. I’d love to see how this turns out. I think it’s a good pitch but I’d need more to get my interest.
    3. I really don’t know what to say about this one. Mostly because I wrote it.
    4. I think you need to make the world setting a little clearer. Just finding kids and putting them in new homes is a little bit vague. Still I’m curious about the mystery. I always look forward to a Man vs Man/Man vs Nature story. A good pitch, though I’d want more for setting before I got into it.

    • gcrockwood

      Number 4 here. It would have been clearer to say New Springs is a metropolitan area.

  • Nacho

    1. It sounds like a good story I’m just not sure it’s a “tragedy”. To be honest, the only definition of tragedy I personally know is more the greek-style (downfall/everyone dies at the end), which this could definitely be.
    2. I love the concept, I’m assuming it’s dark humor?
    3. Sounds awesome, how supernatural are you planning on going?
    4. Can you elaborate on the setting a little more. I don’t fully understand what these street kids are. Is it gangs of the orphans or is it something intrinsic to the world the story takes place in.

    • Kamary

      In regards to number 3, very supernatural. Thank you for the comment.

    • gcrockwood

      Number 4 here. The street kids are orphans. That shouldn’t have been left out.
      Thank you.

  • gcrockwood

    1. This sounds more like a mystery to me. I get a ‘murder she wrote’ vibe which I really like.
    2. Sci-fi Comedy of a guy about to lose control of his arm? That is golden.
    3. This is straight forward, no nonsense pitch. Everything I needed to watch to read is there.
    4. I could have been more descriptive. It was important that I mention they’re orphans, as well as this isn’t based on earth.

  • Heracorn

    1. Reading this I got more of the impression you wrote a thriller mystery. MAybe foreshadow the tragedy a bit more. Also maybe take away the “mystifying” part.
    2. Good concept. Sounds a little like an action story. But I think you have a good pitch line for what you’re trying to deliver.
    3. My biggest and really only problem is that the part about a ritual just leaves me a little bit confused.
    4. I read evreything that I needed to to get a good idea of what’s going on. Or maybe I didn’t. That’s what makes it a mystery 😉

  • 81cheney

    1. As another commentator said, it seems like a mix between mystery and tragedy. I do like the suspense, keep up the good work.
    2. I’m wondering how comedy will be incorporated. I’d also like a thing or two about the personalities of the characters.
    3. Now this seems like a true horror pitch. The suspense, the information, everything is perfect.
    4. The suspense is great, if you can incorporate some backstories, it’ll be even better.

  • Svarmani Wolfborn

    Tragedy –
    I enjoyed that you told us that this was more than just tragedy, but it has elements of mystery and old school Film Noir. I think from this pitch, I understand who Tony might be and the danger he might be in. What I felt uncertain of was, beyond the death of a “friend”, what makes this tragedy.

    Comedy –
    I was confused on how or where the comedy would come into this. It sounds more Sci-Fi or mystery to me. I do love the premise though. I love how something or someone proves that there are holes in the security programming. I would enjoy reading this story.

    Horror –
    I like how this pitch pulls me in. The fear of death is a great motivater. I think the line about why she is staying with her cousin could be removed and we’d still understand the idea of the story.

    Mystery –
    This pitch seems long. I tried to read it outloud and I could not say it all in the amount of time it would take to ride an elevator. I suppose that if the building were tall it would take longer, but I think it could be condensed down some. For example, Peacekeeper Nartan Lackland catches street kids in New Springs and puts them in loving homes, however the untrusting children aren’t always easy to find. As a record breakingly cold winter arrives, Narton must find the elusive street kids before they freeze to death. I do however like the premise that you have going. I feel the need to know if he will succeed or not.

  • Daniel London

    1. I could see a tale like this taking a turn towards vengeance. I’m curious to know what the connection between the protagonist and the victim who died. Is Tony really going to trust “nobody” or have some confidant?

    2. Is there anything better than slapstick, sci-fi comedy? It’ll be interesting to see if the story stays light and fluffy, or takes a dark comedy turn.

    3. I feel there needs to be more information about the ritual, and less about where the protagonist came from. Switching a little of that information would keep the amount of lines the same. All-in-all good pitch.

    4. Seeing a trained professional with a soft side trying to help people who may not want his help is the kind of story we need right now, given the climate in the world. I’m not sure what part about the pitch makes it a mystery though – perhaps saying the elusive group is lead by someone yet unknown would help. Of the four, I’m most excited by this pitch.

  • SplinterFM

    1 – It didn’t really feel like a tragedy but the pitch foreshadows a good mystery. I liked it. I just feel there is something wrong with the “mystifying” on the last sentence, it didn’t need to be there.

    2 – It was not so clear for me what kind of implants these are (maybe because English is my second language). At first, I thought they were implants in your brain and I thought if someone could hack into them they would be able to read your mind and stuff, my brian took a different path there. But when I realized what it was about, knowing it’s a comedy, I loved it. The arm turning against him makes me think about that scene with the evil hand in Evil Dead 2 which is awesome. It’s one of those ideas I wish I had had.

    3 – I’m not into ghosts and spirits for horror so I’m hoping the dangerous entity is a real, physical monster — or even a person, that would be terrifying. But the setting and the conflict build up for a great story. Good job!

    4 – “I don’t quite feel the mystery from the pitch itself, although I can see it coming in the story. The concept is good for a mystery story but I don’t see it there yet,” is what I was going to say before reading your comments.

    You emphasized how they are orphans — and maybe that is important in the story — but you also said the story isn’t based on Earth. Like, it happens on another planet? Because that sounds much more important, it changes everything for me. When I imagine people living on another planet, I usually don’t assume society works exactly how it does on Earth. I don’t know how things work there, that is already a mystery for me, I’m interested about the kids and this man’s role in the society.

    When you say the guy catches kids in New Springs, “New Springs” doesn’t really tell me much about the place, but had you said it’s on another planet, that’s completely different. I’m looking forward to reading this story!

  • artisticBard

    While you have an interesting concept, I don’t really get a “comedy” vibe from your pitch. Perhaps elaborating on the humour aspect of the story might help.

    I feel like your pitch could be reworked to feel a bit more linear. Right now it feels very choppy, as it only glosses over different parts of the story and leaves the reader confused. There should be some sort of transition to help it flow better.

  • artisticBard

    While your pitch foreshadows an interesting mystery, I don’t really get a tragedy feel from it. Instead of focusing so much on the mystery aspect of the story, perhaps give a hint to the readers as to how it will become a tragedy.

    You have an interesting concept, but I didn’t really get a “comedy” vibe from your pitch. Perhaps elaborating on the humour aspect of the story might help.

    Very well done. Your pitch definitely left me in suspense. I’m anxious to read about what exactly this ritual is and what becomes of the children.

    I feel like your pitch could be reworked to feel a bit more linear. Right now it feels very choppy, as it only glosses over different parts of the story, and leaves the reader confused. There should be some sort of transition to help it flow better.

  • BlueLikeATardis

    1.) I really enjoyed this pitch, I find myself to be very intrigued. The only question I have is who exactly is Tony? A detective? A cop? I am also curious to the relationship between Tony and Felyn.

    2.) As I was reading this, I wouldn’t have thought a pitch like this could be seen as a comedy up until the last line. I really enjoy the idea of body limbs being turned against people. I really enjoyed this pitch and it gave me enough to want to see more.

    3.) I think the only thing about this pitch I have a question on is the safe passage ritual. I really enjoy the horror genre and your pitch set up the characters, the conflict, and the tone really well.

    4.) I can understand street kids not trusting being put in homes and all, but there still seems to be a hole missing for me. It’s vague and I don’t quite really know if the pitch ties in with mystery, but I do think it is an interesting concept.

  • Paul A Weaver

    1.This is a mystery/murder pitch but could also be a tragedy depending on the links between the characters within the story. I think the overall idea may be one that has been used before but the way it’s implemented which we will only get to know as the story develops has good opportunity to make a excellent read.

    2. I believe that this is more a horror than a comedy I am not seeing anything that strikes me as funny. I suspect you know something about the plot you are not telling us about. As a horror, I believe this would be an excellent pitch. I am looking forward to reading your story.

    3. This three sentence pitch does what it’s meant too, it gives an outline of the story without going into too much detail that it ruins the story. It identifies the main character and her task in this story. The pitch indicates a good story line which I hope will be carried through to the final manuscript as I think it will have great potential to be an excellent read.

    4. I want to read this story and I am looking forward to seeing the final story. This pitch uses the maximum of five sentences to great effect.

  • Vikingsfan95

    2. Very intriguing idea, something I never thought about before. I would stay away from starting with the phrase “in a world”,”only a matter of time” etc it makes your idea sound somewhat clitche when it’s actually very unique. This seems to be more of Sci-Fi/Thriller than anything, so unless you write about a robotic penis maybe rethink your genre. Another thing that I want to know is why the body parts are being hacked and by who.

    3. I think the word “while” is a little too passive to start a pitch. I think a story needs to start with a catalyst
    , something that moves the story forward. I think you should start your pitch as close to the action as possible. i.e Ignoring key advice for safe passage,Ash invites untold evil etc etc.

    4. Immediately I think of hunger games with the word peacekeeper. I know that’s probably a term used in some countries but it’s important to know what that connotation bears. You might benefit by using a term like vanguard.I also think there needs to be a little more peculiarity to the pitch to make it embody a mystery. Something that sets the mystery apart from other mysteries. Turn the mystery of “Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar, was it dad?” to “Something stole the cookies from the cookie jar, but I live alone”.


  • Arthur Cole

    Tragedy: COMMUNISTmeow
    Very intriguing, and, I think, promises excitement and tension. The one think that I would comment is the opening sentence. The fact that the city (East Saint Paul) is mentioned first rather than the protagonist, thus when Tony is mentioned it sounds like you’re already supposed to know who he is. I would phrase it this way:
    “Tony fights tirelessly to bring justice to one of East Saint Paul’s staple residents, Felyn Reynolds, after a traffic hit and run, leading Tony through the rough backstreets on a thrilling search for answers.”
    Or something like that. But I am attracted to promised tension.

    Comedy: IAmtheRedWizards
    I’m not too sure where the comedy will come in by the pitch, which I think is vital for a pitch to display is intended genre. Personally, it doesn’t sound like something that I would put on the top of my read list, but I do think the idea has a lot more potential then the pitch alludes to.

    Horror: Kamary
    Extremely promising! I would purchase this book based on the pitch alone and I can’t really personally find an improvement that I can make. Well done!

    Mystery: Grover_g
    First thing I would like to say is that I think this pitch is walking the fence of Mystery, Drama, and possibly thriller (based on the potential level of tension involved).I think you are going to have to tread lightly with each step to keep the mystery element because of you show anything from the street kids’ viewpoint then I would think the mystery element may be fine because there no longer is any mystery where they are out of they are still alive and so forth. So, all in all, good pitch, but pay attention to genre conventions.

    -Arthur Cole