Skates In, Skates Off

Some things have been happening in my little corner of the globe and I’m afraid they might make updating this blog a little harder for the next five weeks or so. Those things have to do with the Sea Story, a little peer pressure from my critique partners, and a competition called Pitch Wars. Basically, I’ve been lucky enough to be chosen as a mentee by the brilliant Stacey Lee and over the next five weeks we’ll be spit-shining my manuscript until it gleams.

(If you want to cheer on my caffeine-and-cookies fueled revision, we’re Team Orca and you can find us on Twitter under the hashtag #TeamOrca. Also on our team are Rebecca Thomas and Shanna Miles. Feel free to cheer them on, too.)

Helper elf #1
Helper Elf #1

Here’s the blurb for my story, so you know what I’m working on:

People are dying on Skana Island, swallowed up by the icy sea. For seventeen-year-old outsider Anna Delmore, this stirs memories of her own father’s drowning death on a research dive only a year ago. The islanders believe hanging whalebone over their doorways and stringing red beads in their hair will save them from death, but Anna doesn’t believe the islander’s stories. No, she believes the threat comes not from orcas or ancient magic but from the islanders themselves, and that their superstition blinds them from the human killer in their midst.

When another girl goes missing after secretly contacting Anna, Anna enlists the help of Jeremy Renwick, the faithful son of the local sheriff, in order to disprove the islander’s beliefs. But the closer she grows to Jeremy the more her conviction wavers. Time is running out and when the islanders mount a hunt to kill the orcas they believe responsible for the deaths, Anna is forced to choose: stop the killer from taking another life, or save the whales her father tried so hard to protect.

THE SEA WOLVES, complete at 80,000 words, is a YA literary thriller based on Pacific Northwest folklore surrounding killer whales.

Helper Elf #2
Helper Elf #2

Another tidbit to keep you going over the holidays: when not eating pie, wrapping presents, or working on the Sea Story, I’ve been planning a new book. I’m so, so excited about it. It’s a psychological thriller about a dying logging town in Oregon, a missing boy and a girl who is afraid to let go. It has about as much magic as The Sea Wolves, which is to say, maybe a lot, maybe none at all.

I’m thinking my genre is actually Contemporary Plus. I always think I’m writing a straight contemporary, but whether I actually am or not is up for debate.

See you on the other side, peeps! Take a slice of pie before you go.

All the pie.
I’ve been living on this stuff lately.
Skates In, Skates Off

6 thoughts on “Skates In, Skates Off

  1. Hooray for the SEA WOLVES!! So excited for you, Beth. Happy revising! (Love your genre description, lol — contemporary plus! Sounds like it would work for my YA stuff, too…I tend to call mine “contemporary with a side of weird”.)

    Thanks for the pie… 🙂

    1. bethanyrsmith says:

      Thanks! It’s funny how I started off thinking I was a paranormal writer, but the further I go, the more I’m drawn to realism… with a twist. You’re welcome for the pie! We made your pumpkin pie again this year and it was a HIT, especially as we made it with a homemade crust this time. Good luck as you keep working on your own sea story 🙂

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