Entry Nickname: Where’s Will Smith When We Need Him?
Word Count: 83,000
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Clover Martinez – a 17-year-old pilot who dreams of being the first Latina to explore space – returns from a cave trip in Montana with her boyfriend to find both her hopes and the human race destroyed.
It took three days for the aliens to wipe out most of Earth’s population, but not Clover. After a close encounter with the spider-like species with human heads, she finds she’s invisible to their eyes – though her boyfriend isn’t as lucky. After six months on the run, believing she’s the last of her kind, Clover discovers the self-entitled ‘Last Teenagers on Earth’ hiding in Area 51. Finally there’s hope – with more of them, they can fight back.
What Clover isn’t expecting is their unwillingness to take on the enemy. The aliens are an unstoppable force, and no one wants to put their lives on the line in a hopeless endeavor. As Clover uncovers redacted archives, an old spaceship and strange science experiments, she needs answers to convince her friends to fight.
Every evidence points towards a dead end – and if Clover can’t finish the puzzle before the aliens strike, they’re all dead and humanity with them.
My abuelo used to say there were people that belong to the Earth, and others, like us Martinez, belong to the Sky.
There's nothing like the feeling of rising in the air, feeling the wings of the plane accelerate beneath you, and the sinking of your stomach on the excitement of getting off the ground. Adrenaline rushing through our veins, laughing blindly to the sun. Dreaming about the day I wasn't going to fly a plane, but see the dark space beyond the International Space Station.
All that gone from the day the aliens spaceships landed on Earth's backyard and never left.
I watch one of them now, standing by the side of the road. They were shaped like pears, all smooth iron surface, closed up like oysters. No sign of life from beyond it, the roads near the mountains completely empty.
"Cheer up, Clover," Noah says by my side, hands on the steering wheel of his red pick-up truck. "We've spent a nice weekend."
He puts one of his hands on my knees, squeezing it. I'm used to the gestures — the small touches of reassurance that he needs. I nod, not in the mood to talk. I tear my gaze away from the shiny ship, alien among the trail of the mountains. I look at my cell phone, but there's no sign of any calls or any bars. By now, the satellite signal should be working.
"They'll call," Noah continues as if I had answered him. "And so will my parents.”
Title: The Siren Episode
Entry Nickname: Cement Gargling 101
Word Count: 82,000
Genre: YA Fantasy
After the myths destroyed San Francisco twelve years ago, the Myth Slayers TV show climbed to number one in the ratings. Now the show’s stars want to retire and force the reins upon their son. But at seventeen, Arlen doesn’t want to kill anyone. He especially doesn’t want to slaughter monsters on primetime TV like his parents—he just wants to survive high school, where a terrible genetic curse makes his life unbearable.
Imagine being famous, but unable to approach girls without making them sick. Worst curse ever. So when Arlen finds a girl who’s not getting sick, he finally sees a chance at a normal life. Problem is, she’s a siren. And she hides a secret: the location of a safe filled with evidence that Arlen’s parents destroyed San Francisco instead of the myths. Arlen’s parents would kill to keep this secret buried, leaving Arlen with an impossible choice: murder the siren to protect his family, or seize this opportunity at freedom, journey with the siren to the safe, and expose the truth to the world.
Arlen Boggs hopped his neighbor’s fence and sneaked past the protestors. They’d camped in front of his house again, picket signs raised. He tried to keep his footsteps light, but the deep rain puddles didn’t help his cause.
Trees rustled on either side of him. He looked up at the sycamores and saw nothing but windblown leaves.
Two more blocks, he thought. You can do two blocks.
The morning air gave him a chill, and he buttoned up his father's trench coat, too big for his lanky frame. He wore it to keep himself hidden, though it never helped. Arlen stood out wherever he went.
Head down, he followed the dotted yellow lines along the center of the street. Another rustle. This time he stopped and stared into one of the trees. Still nothing.
A woman’s voice came from behind him: “There he is.”
Arlen turned to look at the protestors, five houses back. “Great,” he said.
Two of their billboards read, “GO AWAY, MYTH SLAYERS!” and “MYTHS HAVE RIGHTS, TOO!” Despite the wet September morning, the crazy zealots wandered onto the road and shouted at him.
A few months shy of his eighteenth birthday, Arlen still didn't have his driver's license. His parents didn't have time to teach him, always out filming their TV show. Otherwise, he would have driven himself to school and avoided the morning hate-fest.
Another tree rustled and a branch snapped.
Could be a monster.
The protestors sped up, chasing after him with their hand-painted signs.