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"The Writer’s Voice" Contest Entry: Stitching Snow

For my regular readers, this is my entry for a contest I’ve entered. (See details here.) Feel free to peruse or ignore as you’d like. 🙂


Seventeen-year-old Essie knows how to stitch up robotic drones so the men in the mining settlement remember she’s worth keeping around. She knows how to use her fists to make sure they keep their hands off her. What she doesn’t know is how to deal with a boy who’s depending on her to get his crashed shuttle off the ground and out of orbit.

He’s polite, chivalrous, even a little charming, and he gives Essie the kind of attention she’s never had … until he discovers her secret. She’s the missing princess of his people’s greatest enemy. One betrayal later, he’s taking her home whether she likes it or not, to exchange for prisoners of war. What he doesn’t know is she had damn good reasons for running away. His ‘leverage’ means her death.

STITCHING SNOW is 68,000 words of Snow White in space, if Snow were a cage-fighting tech-head with daddy issues.

First 250 Words:

It took seventeen seconds to decide Jarom Thacker’s reputation as the sharpest fighter on Thanda had been a minor exaggeration. At twice my size—and age—he was still quick, forcing me to move or risk getting pinned against the cage. Like everyone else who came through Mining Settlement Forty-Two, though, he aimed for my gut or back. Never the most obvious target.

Wouldn’t want to botch the pretty girl’s face, right? Idiot.

I blocked him on the left, but missed his swing on the right slamming into my ribs. Pain flared through my side. I let it fire me on and slipped Thacker’s grip when he tried to grab me.

Unlike him, I had no qualms about uglifying him further—not with the way he looked at me, the shudder it sent across my skin. The heel of my palm slammed into his nose with a satisfying crunch despite the cushioning of my shock-fiber handwraps. He ignored the blood and lunged blindly; I dodged with a knee to his groin. When he doubled over, I kicked his legs from under him. He went down and I followed, pinning him. He tried to raise himself up. Before he could throw me off, I grabbed a fistful of his hair and knocked his head against the floor.

“Three … two … one … fight goes to Forty-Two’s own Essie.”

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65 Responses to “"The Writer’s Voice" Contest Entry: Stitching Snow”

  1. Hi R.C., I’m stopping by from the Writer’s Voice Contest to wish you the best of luck! I’m following your blog now, so: nice to meet you.

  2. Oooooh! I would love to read this book! Good luck in the contest!

  3. MarcyKate says:

    Dude, your query ROCKS. And the opening is very strong start. Love this!!! GOOD LUCK! 😀

  4. Snow White in space–awesome!! Good luck to you!!

  5. K.L. Layton says:

    Sounds very interesting. Good luck!

  6. This sounds awesome! Yay sci-fi! I’m rooting for your entry!

  7. Hooray! I get to crit it! *hides from rotten tomatoes being flung*

  8. Becca C. says:

    Fellow Writers Voice entrant checking in – howdy!

    Love, love, love. That last line of your query alone is just frickin’ awesome, and the voice is great.

  9. P.Adams says:

    From a fellow contestant, good luck. Love female protagonists with some grit.

  10. Ann Bedichek says:

    Awesome main character!! That first 250 says so much about her. Love it.

    Good luck!

  11. Stephanie says:

    Awesome concept, and great voice in the first 250. 🙂 Good luck!

  12. Love fairy tale fusion! This looks promising. Best luck from #30!

  13. R.C. Lewis says:

    Alaskan Ninja, assume you’re referring to Mindy about rubbing faces? Yeah, there’s not much about her that’s subtle. 😉

    Thanks for the comments, all. And good luck to those also in the contest!

  14. Oh, this sounds interesting! Good luck!

  15. SueJay says:

    Your query is great! Love the line about the cage-fighting tech-head with daddy issues. I love a gritty chick. Good luck.

  16. Mia K Rose says:

    Like your first 250 words. Happy you finished it since reading the query back on AQC while it was still in-progress. Snow White retellings are cool.
    Good luck. 🙂

  17. Alice says:

    Snow White in space. Cool.

  18. Amber says:

    ohhh, I like this. Good luck!

  19. Great voice! I love your opening scene! I just joined your blog. I look forward to reading more from you! Good luck in the contest!

  20. I read this earlier and forgot to comment. Oops. Anyway, I love fairy tales, and retellings are even better. 😀 Snow White in SF. LOVE.

  21. Krysten Hill says:

    Im just popping by to wish you luck!

    Snow White in Space? Why hasn’t anyone thought of that yet?! Even though I was always more of an Ariel girl, Lulz.

  22. I already loved this the first time I saw the query on AQC. Love your kick-ass protagonist! 🙂

  23. This is awesome. That is all. 🙂

  24. Nazarea says:

    oh, fairytale mashup FTW! Love your query–best of luck!
    (WVC entry 86)

  25. T.L. Bodine says:

    Dude, this is /awesome/. I expect to be seeing a lot more of you in the future 😀 Good luck on the contest!

  26. Marieke says:

    Snow White in space? This sounds awesome! 😀

  27. Voice:check. Kick-ass query: check. Plot: double check!

    Loving every word I read, and your words jumped out from the page kicking and punching with fury.

  28. aberthot says:

    I love the last line of you query – kick ass!

  29. Adam Oster says:

    Any book that starts off with a cage fight has officially piqued my interest. Good work and good luck!

  30. April Wall says:

    R.C., stopping by to share the AQC and Writer’s Voice love. Good luck!

  31. Darci Cole says:

    YES! I love a good strong female! And the concept of “snow white in space” is SO intriguing. I wanna read more!
    Good luck! -#128

  32. Darci Cole says:

    P.S…. <3 forty-two. It just works for everything, doesn't it? 😉

  33. A fairy-tale sic-fi retelling? Sweet! Good luck!
    Brandi #199

  34. Alex Hayman says:

    This sounds incredibly awesome. Good luck!

    Alex #85

  35. You sold we with Snow White in space! Good luck!!

    Entry #31

  36. Jacky Gray says:

    We are not Worthy. You, however, are.
    Stunning. Almost speechless.
    You don’t need my best wishes for luck,
    but you’re gettin’ them anyway.
    {slides out the back door, head hung low}.
    Cheers Babe
    Jacky (#130)

  37. Megan says:

    ..if Snow were a cage-fighting techhead with daddy issues. LOL. Love it.

  38. Nikki says:

    Just stopping by to wish you luck! Good job!

    Nikki (Entry #160)

  39. R.C. Lewis says:

    Thanks again for all the comments, everyone!

    (Hi, Noelle!)

    Jacky, what’s this about worthiness? *blush* Thanks!

  40. Jemi Fraser says:

    LOVE! Both your query and your opening lines absolutely rock!!!

  41. Amalia T. says:

    This sounds GREAT, beginning to end!! I am already rooting for Essie! Good luck!

  42. MonicaSanz says:

    The last line in your query really made me laugh. Best of luck!

  43. Best. Comparison. Ever! 😀

  44. TYHatch says:

    You grabbed my attention immediately – with both the query and the first 250. I would love to see more.

    Good luck!

    Tina #194

  45. That last line of the query was sheer awesomeness! And love the action in your opening. Good luck!

    -George (#49)

  46. Love the query and the 250. Very cool concept. Snow White in space!!

    Good luck!!

  47. KelsNotChels says:

    Your query is super awesome!! I love the last line SO HARD! 😀

    Good luck in the contest!! 😀

  48. lexcade says:

    The last line of your query made me LOL. Best of luck from #52!

  49. Jenn says:

    Whoa! I love fairy tale retellings, and I LOVE sci-fi. Put them together, and I’m a happy reader!

    Oh, and I just started following you on Twitter, since you seem to be so awesome at keeping me up-to-date on the Writer’s Voice picks. Thank you! 🙂


    Entry #165

    – Random Andrews

  51. My last name translates to Snow White, so I’m always on the hunt for a new twist on the tale.
    Best of luck!
    Carolyn, #157.

  52. C.G.Ayling says:

    I could have sworn I posted on this before… please accept my belated good wishes for your luck. BTW you’re pretty safe – I’m reasonably sure Snow White fought seven dwarfs and won, tough it might not have been in a cage…

  53. Clara B. says:

    Nice entry. Good luck~!

    Clara, #112

  54. Monica B.W. says:

    I WANT YOU!!! SO MUCH!!!

    I mean, I just LOVE it!! A MC with personality–who happens to be a runaway princess? And a boy who wants to exchange her for prisoners of war? And there are life/death stakes? What’s not to like? This is just awesome!!

    As the other entries, I might have a couple of nitpicks…but really small!

    I’d LOVE to have you on my team!!!!!

  55. MarcyKate says:

    YESSSSSS! WOOT! You got in! You got in! Clearly Monica has FANTASTIC Taste! 😀 😀 😀

  56. R.C. Lewis says:

    Yay! So excited! Thanks, Monica! 😀

    (Now I have to work on my physics lesson for later this morning. *shoves brain into other gear*)

  57. April Wall says:

    Congrats for getting picked! I told you I thought you definitely deserved it and now we’re teammates, yay! Seriously congrats again 🙂

  58. Woo hoooooooo! I’m so happy for you! Wait. You’re on a rival team. Game on. 😀

  59. Jacky Gray says:

    See R.C. Told you you were Worthy.
    Huge congrats – as a fellow teacher of math (and algebra and geometry!) I’m relying on you to hold your head high and proud.
    You Rock like a Journey concert!

  60. Congrats on getting picked! Well-deserved! Continued luck!

    -George (#49)

  61. April Wall says:

    Hey I’ve awarded your blog the Sunshine Award! Check it out at

  62. Sarah Ahiers says:

    I’m finally making my way through the rest of these entries.
    Woo Hoo! Glad we’re on the same team! This sounds awesome and i love me a badass heroine.

  63. Cage-fighting tech-head with daddy issues. I’m pretty sure you threw a party when you came up with that last line. It’s fabulous!Glad to be on your team.

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