JS Dewes (jsdama on QT) has signed with agent Margaret Bail of Fuse Literary.
The original inspiration came from a lyric in the song “Highwayman” (written by Jimmy Webb, performed by The Highwaymen) that goes, “I fly a starship across the universe divide.” It got me thinking about what might happen if you could reach the edge of the universe. I drew inspiration from a lot of other sources as well (Battlestar Galactica, Mass Effect) but that was the spark that got me going!
I can’t stress enough how important readers are to the writing process. Though, it’s also important to be patient and careful with how you execute that feedback. Sometimes your knee-jerk instinct is to jump right into edits and make changes right away, but I’ve found it’s immensely important to gather many varied opinions (both from readers of the genre, and those less familiar), then look at it as a whole before making major revisions.
However, that approach has not worked quite as well with my next WIP, and I’ve found myself outlining a little bit more in advance. I don’t think I’ll ever be the kind of writer that completes a detailed outline before starting to draft, but I may start planning concepts and plot a little more thoroughly for future books. I’m definitely still learning what my ideal writing process is!
However sometimes, there just wasn’t anything specific to mention beyond “you like science fiction.” In those cases, I just kept it simple, and dove directly into the story.
Also, participate in Twitter pitch events! Though I didn’t find my agent that way, I got 5 of my 9 partial/full requests from Twitter pitch events. It’s also just a great way to practice pitching your stories, learn how to concisely talk about your ideas, and connect with other authors.
Dear Margaret Bail,
At the edge of the universe lies the Divide. Veteran war hero Adequin Rake commands a dreadnaught-turned-watchtower stationed along the invisible boundary. Adequin never thought her decorated career would be rewarded with the opportunity to babysit delinquent soldiers billions of lightyears from civilization. But, here she is.
An even more tiresome challenge presents itself in the form of exiled prince Cavalon Mercer. Forced to enlist after a “familial disagreement” (which may have involved explosives), the disowned royal wants nothing more than to lie low and go unnoticed. But relentless snark and a complete lack of self-preservation instincts quickly land him in the crosshairs of anti-royalist soldiers.
Then the universe starts to collapse.
Stranded without access to faster-than-light travel or functioning comms, this motley crew must find a way to escape the Divide as it closes in on them and — if possible — stop it before the universe collapses completely.
THE DIVIDE is a 121,000-word science fiction adventure told in dual-POV, with series potential. It will appeal to fans seeking the high-stakes adventure of space opera, while maintaining a small scope that focuses on characters. It’s Battlestar Galactica meets the Night’s Watch at the edge of the universe, and will attract fans of Ancillary Justice and Leviathan Wakes.
I have a Bachelor of Arts in Film from Columbia College Chicago. I’ve written scripts for award-winning films which have screened at San Diego Comic-Con and dozens of film festivals across the nation.
Please find a short synopsis and the first ten pages pasted below. Thank you very much for your time and consideration!