Name: E.C. Farrell

Twitter Handle: @celiselott

YA or MG: YA

Genre: Science Fiction

Title: Code Word for Crazy

Twitter Pitch (140 characters max): When Designer Kid Cal is injected with mind controlling tech, she needs her “brother’s” help to #Resist its power. #YA #SF

1st 250 words of opening: In the rust-brittled railroad car where Sephrim and Cal lived, they never ran out of dirt. It turned to mud when it rained and no matter how often they tried to brush, dust, or scrub it away, the stuff stuck like engine grease. Today’s storm turned it all into a stubborn sludge, a fact Sephrim noted as he made a valiant effort to pry the muck off his boots.

“Adds a touch of character,” Cal said. Never much bothered by the filth, she mapped intricate designs on the floor with her crayons. This evening, her nimble fingers traced a sleek handgun.

Giving up on his boot, Sephrim smirked and reached up to carve another one of their days in a tally mark into the wall. “Character, sure. Toss me that FudPak™ would you?” Food in name only, he thought, tearing open the vacuum sealed package. He’d just pinched it open when a distant snap sent cold shock through his limbs.


In unison, he and Cal sprang from their flannel-covered sleeping mats. She threw the lever for the false floor as Sephrim turned off their flash lights and snapped on his tool belt.

Together, they leapt out the small hole at the back of the railroad car and into the damp night. Sephrim cursed as he and Cal split up, heading in opposite directions out of the protective circle of railroad cars and shipping containers. He didn’t have time to glance at the scribbled calendar folded in his tool belt

Synopsis (200 word max): In 2035, the rich can purchase a genetically engineered child. If a Designer Kid isn’t bought by age ten, they are sent to “workhouses.” CAL and SEPHRIM have escaped and use their unique abilities to survive. When the United Nations announces a meeting for the first time in fifteen years, they are worried. With their former doctor, JUNE WING, involved and garnering support for her opinions on child labor and donor laws, life might become more dangerous.

When HELLEN JACOBS, a crime boss, kidnaps Cal and inserts a mind control chip into her brain to make her assassinate members of the UN, Sephrim enlists the help of his partner in crime DARBY CADE and her tech genius brother CODY – also Hellen’s prisoner – to save her.

Hellen manipulates Darby into killing Sephrim. Guilt-ridden, Darby merely injures him. Taken by Hellen and told Sephrim is dead, Cal shuts down. Saved by a Healing Tube, Sephrim races to help Cal who overrides the mind control chip and defeats Hellen and Dr. Wing as Cody broadcasts footage from the labs to reveal its corruption. With the program under scrutiny and the strict laws lifted, Cal and Sephrim are adopted.

Feedback tips (any areas where you specifically want people to focus?): I know my synopsis is terrible. Halp! Haha