Monday, October 1, 2012

GUTGAA SPP #20 - Blackout

Title: Blackout
Genre: Adult Urban Fantasy
Word Count: 98,696


People say God doesn’t ask more from you than you can handle. Well, those people never got drafted into a millennia-long battle because the angel of death needed a new body for his lieutenant. Malcolm Anders is a math teacher and a part-time gymnast, at least when he isn’t cleaning the blood off of his hands after waking up over another body. He struggles to keep his sanity and his life while a supposedly divine spirit, Saraqael, wages a holy war using Malcolm’s body. Saraqael costs Malcolm his stability, his plans for the future, and
the woman he thought he’d be with forever. Malcolm seeks the help of a priest to get his life back and expel his unwelcome celestial visitor, but what they discover only draws Malcolm deeper.

The demon Andras, Saraqael’s eternal foil, has chosen Philadelphia for this century’s uprising. His infernal legions possess the weak, the angry, and the criminals. With an army of demon-possessed puppets, Andras plots to disrupt the divine plan and begin Armageddon before the world is ready. Using Malcolm, Saraqael hunts down Andras’s legionnaires one by one, leaving Malcolm terrified of the day when the cops show up at his door wanting to ask questions about a dozen unsolved murders. When the demons discover Malcolm’s identity, they
bring the fight to him and kidnap his friend and wannabe lover, Pae, forcing Malcolm to change the rules and bring Saraqael into his waking mind. Together, Malcolm and Saraqael fight to save Pae, Philadelphia, and the world in the midst of a city that doesn’t even know it’s under siege.

First 150 Words:

I snapped out of it Thursday morning with a pain in my jaw. Someone had punched me in the face. The adrenaline coursing through my veins was all too familiar. Damn it. The man underneath me moved. Wait, he
wasn’t dead yet? That was a first. My victim clawed at the ground, desperately reaching for… oh shit, a gun. So much for trying to stop.

I hit him hard in the back of the head. It was frighteningly exhilarating. Despite my history, violence is kind of a new thing for me. Blood splattered out beneath him. Something cracked. He screamed.

Why? Why can’t I just go out to a movie like a normal person, you know, one who goes right the hell home after the show ends? I hit him again. I’d like to be merciful, but by now I had faith that I was here for a reason. Besides, it’s not like I could just get up and apologize.


Slave to the Muse said...

I think your query is excellent! The first and second lines are really great. In your opening chapter, which is also great, I think if you could find a way to start with, "The man underneath me moved," it would be even stronger.
I'll be voting later so check back to see if I leave another comment with my vote! Great job!

Ellie Heller said...

Wow you've done a good job narrowing down what could be an overwhelming amount of information! Like this a lot (but, alas, I am not a judge).

Slave to the Muse said...

This was really a great entry. You have my vote! :)

Michael McDuffee said...

Grazie, Muse. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Michael McDuffee said...

Thanks Ellie!

Alaskan Ninja said...

This is a killer premise, and sounds like a fun read! Best luck!

Rose Cardinal said...


There isn't much about this that I don't love. It left me wanting to read more.

Michael McDuffee said...

Thank you Rose Cardinal!

Kinderella said...

Very compelling entry! Your query set me up for the world that you created. The first 150 words hooked me and I enjoyed your voice. Great job. You've got my vote!

Michael McDuffee said...

Thank you to everyone who read this! I'm so glad people enjoyed the idea, and while I of course appreciate the votes, I also appreciate the comments of everyone who stopped by. Thanks Alaskan Ninja & Ellie Heller