PW #303: NA Contemporary: WORTH THE WEIGHT

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Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor Name: Diana Gallagher
Mentee Name: Erika Grotto
Category: New Adult
Genre: Contemporary
Word Count: 63,000


Fresh off the set of a weight loss reality show, former outcast Cassie finally has the perfect life and Alex, the perfect boyfriend, to go with it. But reminders of her unhappy past lurk around every corner in her small town, leaving her to wonder whether she can trust Alex’s love. As she prepares for the show’s premiere, she must learn to live in her new body or risk losing everything she worked for.


I was too busy looking at the principal’s shiny bald spot to hear his advice to the Class of 2014. They really should have powdered his head before they turned on the lights on the football field. All the parents taking pictures were going to be disappointed when their photos had a big old glare.

It was my first time on the football field. It was my first time in the stadium.

My metal folding chair wobbled back and forth on the uneven ground as the warm June breeze blew my gold tassel into my face. Somewhere in the neighborhood, a dog had been barking for the last hour. I couldn’t wait to get out of this place and away from everyone in it. Well, almost everyone. And the one person I knew I would miss—Alex—hadn’t glanced my way the entire ceremony.

“…and now, I offer you my most sincere congratulations. Class of 2014, you are now officially graduates.”

The audience applauded, and cries of “We did it!” and “Go Bulldogs!” rang out around me as 300 red caps flew into the air. Mine sat squarely on my head.

“We did it,” I murmured. “We’ve completed our legally required education. Woo. Go us.”

As my classmates started to cry and celebrate, I walked off the field.

There was no one for me to hug.


Author: Brenda Drake

New York Times bestselling author of Thief of Lies (Library Jumpers #1), Guardian of Secrets (Library Jumpers #2), Touching Fate (Fated Series #1), and Cursing Fate (Fated Series #2) available now, creator of #PitchWars, #PitchMadness, and #PitMad, fueled by coffee and Goldfish crackers (but not together), and represented by Peter Knapp with The Park Literary Group. @brendadrake

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  1. This is something right off of one of my MSWL. I would love to see the full manuscript, sent as a Word attachment, to querycaitie(at)lizadawson(dot)com, with the words “#PitchWars request” in the subject and your query pasted in the body of the email!

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  2. I’d like to read more! Please send the first 50 pages in Word format and a query letter to, and include “Stefanie Lieberman” in the subject line of the email. Thank you!

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