PW #318: Young Adult Contemporary (Own Voices): OVERBOARD

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor: Rachel Lynn Solomon & Kit Frick
Mentee: Allison Augustyn
Category: Young Adult
Genre: Contemporary (Own Voices)
Word Count: 77,000


After a failed suicide attempt, seventeen-year-old Kip is determined to have sex for the first time to feel more alive.

An Alaskan cruise seems like the perfect opportunity—and if her plan fails, she’ll jump off the ship. To save herself, Kip must confront preconceptions about sex and privilege, as well as the growing darkness in her own mind.


You can fit 3,000 people on this cruise ship, so there’s a chance at least one of them will sleep with me. People cruise for many reasons, but I’m going to Alaska to have sex for the first time, or die trying.

Strangely enough, I’ve never seen that mentioned in the brochure.

I’m serious, both about sex and the dying part. Six months ago I proved how serious I am, and I’ve been in therapy ever since. I mostly spend the hour listening to advice I won’t take, watching my left wrist scar over. It’s the only one I got to before I was interrupted.

For the record, scarred over doesn’t mean anything is actually over.

My therapist—Dr. “Call-Me-Jonathan”—told my parents I’m no longer an immediate risk. He’s not a great therapist. He knows about the wrist, but not me jumping off the boat if sex doesn’t happen.

No one does.

GJ (that’s Grandma Julia to you) and I stand in a long line of horrible prints stretched across fat bellies and sagging breasts. There are a million kids running around, but they’re way too young. Now that I see who’s actually cruising, I’m not sure my plan will work. The sun broils us all, creating an incredible smell. I’m sweating through my black jacket and jeans, down to my Converse. I’m wet, and I haven’t even gotten on the boat yet.

Author: Nikki Roberti

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  1. I’d love to take a look at the first 50 pages! Please send your query pasted in the email and the pages attached in a word document to: rena (at) thedeborahharrisagency (dot) com


    – Rena Rossner
    The Deborah Harris Agency

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  2. I’d love to take a look! Can you send along the query (pasted into the body of the email) and the first 50 pages (attached as a .doc) when you have a moment to querylisa [at] awfulagent [dot] com? Also, please include Pitch Wars and the title in the subject line. Thanks!

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  3. I went on an Alaskan cruise this summer and am weirdly into all things related now. Please send the first 50 pages attached as a Word doc with your query in the body of the email to queryjennifer[at]lizadawson[dot]com.

    Thank you!
    – Jennifer Johnson-Blalock, Liza Dawson Associates

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  4. Hi Allison–Interesting premise, and great voice. Please send the manuscript and a synopsis as Word doc attachments to with Pitch Wars and Query + title in the subject line. Can’t wait to read!

    Roseanne Wells
    The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency

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  5. Hi Allison,

    I’d love it if you could send me the first 50 pages at! As a Word doc/docx or PDF would be fine. Please also include a query and make sure you mention #PitchWars in the subject line.


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