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Recipe for disaster: Take Louisa “Lou” Preston, aspiring pastry chef. Stir in a diabetes diagnosis. Sprinkle liberally with a wacky cooking mentor, conservative parents, and demanding friends and siblings. Burn dreams of sweet fame and fortune until crispy.

Recipe for love: Take the steaming heap of Lou’s life. Add a tasty EMT explorer who makes Lou’s heart melt like dark chocolate. Throw in the chance to win a national cooking contest. Kiss until perfectly done.

Sugar High is a completed 50,000 word manuscript target for the YA market. In this first person narrative intended for readers ages 12 and up, Lou recounts her junior year of high school. She shares her snarky opinion on everything from diabetes and doctors to boys and her wacky family.

Readers who enjoy the comedic realism of Princess Diaries and Vegan, Virgin, Valentine and the satire of the movie, Saved, will welcome Lou's conversational wit.

well by now you know this isn't a hook. You've got vim and vivid writing here. I like that. You need to show me there's more than just a cute idea here though so you need a hook.

snarky opinions indeed. MissSnark is calling for the cookie delivery van.


Anonymous said...

This recipe motif is so overdone, the bottoms of the cookies are burned. Ditch the cute and get to the heart of the story. There are too many stupid, brainless chick lit stories on the YA market as it is. How does this one rise above?

shelby said...

I think this sounds cute, and right for a market that enjoys the Princess Diaries. The diabetes is what I think gives it an original edge--not dramatic like cancer, but annoying for a teen who wants to work with sugar. You mention Lou's snarky opinions--what I would love to see here is some of Lou's acerbic wit so I can decide for myself whether or not her snark would appeal to me. I think, that, too, will set this book aside from the rest. I love a strong, funny narrator. Have you read Laurie Halse Anderson's work? Her voice is fantastic.

Keep at it author! Also, you don't need to state that it's a YA novel for ages 12 and up--that's redundant. Just leave it at YA.

Virginia Miss said...

I like this. I think if you work in the protag/conflict into this format, you'll hook an agent (provided, of course, there's a plot in this pot).

skybluepinkrose said...

I like the diabetes angle, too. And with the explosion of cases among kids and teens, this is timely.

Anonymous said...

thanks for all the support! The challenge for me here is conveying her first person voice in a 3rd person hook. I'm going to keep at it though!

Martha O'Connor said...

It could be interesting-there is some clever writing here. And the tone is very fun.

Allow me to put on my advocacy hat for a moment; Type 1 Diabetes is my passion. I am going to point the way to some research for you (and for anyone who is interested in either Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes).

I am sure you, as the author of this book, already know that there are two different types of diabetes, diseases which are so different that they really ought to have completely different names. However, when you are writing the book (and the hook), make sure to explain which type of diabetes your character has.

Type 1 Diabetes is an incurable, autoimmune disease of the pancreas that causes the body to destroy its own insulin-producing cells, usually striking in childhood and rendering the patient insulin dependent for life. Type 2 Diabetes is a type of insulin resistance, which usually strikes older, obese individuals and can sometimes be controlled with diet.

Some people are surprised to learn that kids and adults with Type 1 Diabetes can eat pastry and candy if they take insulin to cover the carbs. It is perfectly acceptable within current-day insulin plans. Thanks to modern insulins such as Lantus and Novolog (or Humalog), patients can now eat pretty much as they like.

For instance, my son (age 9) has insulin dependent, Type 1 Diabetes. He is now happily eating a candy cane, having taken 1/2 unit of insulin to cover the carbs. Earlier he ate some crackers and took 1/2 unit of insulin to cover THOSE carbs. A carb is a carb is a carb...

Great information about Type 1 Diabetes at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation website or at Children with Diabetes.

Information about both Type 1 and Type 2 at The American Diabetes Association

Those sites will help you to answer any questions you may have about diabetes (either Type 1 or Type 2).

Anonymous said...

God if one more person uses the word "snark" I'm going to lose my lunch. As you can see people, it's been done.

wavybrains said...

Martha--thanks for the information. The character has early onset type II diabetes (non-insulin dependent) (which I do as well. The challenge for her is not that she can
*never* eat sugar again, but that she must plan, moderate, and put up with everyone else's opinion of what she *should* be eating. Thanks for the links though! I appreciate it.

Kiki said...

I like the sound of this book. It's cute and sweet with just the right dose of reality for my fluffy-loving reading tastes.
I hope the voice and humor in this story are very strong though, as otherwise it's going to be a huge letdown.

I don't mind books in which precious little happens as long as its done in an entertaining way.

I'd definitely pick it up. But then again, I look at any novel involving food...