Name: Holly Rivers

Twitter Handle: @hollyriversshow

YA or MG: MG

Genre: Supernatural Adventure

Title: Demelza Clock & The Spectre Detectors

Twitter Pitch (140 characters max): It’s science V spectres when 11yo inventor Demelza must use her gadgets to save Grandma from the ghosts of history’s deadliest villains

1st 250 words of opening: “Lights out Demelza!” called Grandma Maeve from the bottom of the attic stairs. “And no sneakin’ outta bed to work on yer inventions again tonight, d’you hear me?”

Under her patchwork quilt, with soldering iron in hand and fully dressed in her lab coat, Demelza grinned. “Yes Grandma, I promise. See you in the morning. Love you!”

Demelza clicked off her bedside lamp and listened through the darkness as Grandma Maeve hobbled the seventeen steps back across the landing to her own room. There was a rustle of curtains being drawn, a thud of slippers being kicked off, the plop of false teeth hitting water, and before long the purring of snores echoed through Seyth Cottage.

Demelza sprung out of bed and reached for her spectacles. “I’m sorry Grandma” she said to herself. “But nothing is going to stand in the way of technological progress tonight, especially something as unnecessary as sleep!”

Wasting no time she pulled on her thinking cap, took the torch from beneath her mattress, and under its dim, yellow light, tiptoed across the attic bedroom. It was more like a workshop than a place where a young girl might sleep – the ceilings were low and angled, and each of the walls was covered in mechanical drawings scrawled in jet black ink. There were no toys or games on the shelves, and instead they were lined with collections of antique microscopes, piles of scientific tomes and an array of wrenches, screwdrivers and brass bolts.

Synopsis (200 word max): Solitary 11y.o inventor Demelza spends her days creating kooky, scientific contraptions in her attic bedroom. So when it’s revealed that her guardian Grandma Maeve is a ‘Spectre Detector’ – someone who summons the dead to help with the mourning process of the bereaved – Demelza’s scientific worldview is rocked. Especially when she learns that she too has supernatural abilities.

After struggling to come to terms with the revelation, Demelza eventually begins to enjoy her new powers, and summons an array of eccentric spectre friends.

But when Grandma is kidnapped, Demelza finds herself face to face with the dangers of being a Spectre Detector. With best-friend Bertie at her side (and having gained some allies, both living and dead), Demelza pieces together a series of clues, unveiling the kidnapper as socialite Araminta Pauncefoot.

Breaking into Pauncefoot mansion the children learn that Araminta is actually a spectre herself, with dreams of world domination involving her undead army of history’s deadliest criminals. She’s kidnapped Grandma Maeve in order to bribe Demelza into summoning even more evil spectres.

In a climactic scene in the burial-tomb of warrior Rivalen the Relentless, Demelza must combine her supernatural powers and inventions to foil Araminta’s plans and save Grandma Maeve.

Feedback tips (any areas where you specifically want people to focus?): Any feedback greatly received, especially about the synopsis as I found it so hard to condense from my 500 word version! Cheers pals X