From Krista Van Dolzer's blog (Mother. Write.) and the Donald Maass website, I learned you are seeking realistic YA, character-driven stories. The Art of Holding On and Letting Go is a 77,000 word, young adult, coming-of-age story with a rock-climbing female protagonist.
After a climbing accident in
I have a master's degree in social work and over ten years experience working with children, teens, and families. I co-edit the SCBWI-MI newsletter and contribute to the YA Fusion blog with a group of YA authors. The Art of Holding On and Letting Go won first place in the 2011 Chicago North RWA Fire and Ice contest. The
The first page of The Art of Holding On and Letting Go is pasted below. I appreciate your time and consideration.
THE ART OF HOLDING ON AND LETTING GO
My teammate, Becky, stood next to me. She had climbed earlier, but fell off a hold a few feet from the top.
“You’re lucky your parents aren’t here,” Becky said. “Mine are making me way nervous.”
“Just don’t look at them before you climb,” I said.
My parents never made me nervous, but there was something freeing about being here by myself, as a serious competitor, and not as the daughter of top mountaineers Mark and Lori Jenkins.
“At least your parents have a life,” Becky said. “My mother would never leave me alone in a foreign country.”
Mom hadn’t been comfortable leaving me either. We’d debated our plan for weeks, but in the end, I had insisted. Mom should go on the
“I’m fine being here with Coach and our team,” I told Becky. “Besides, my parents will be back by the finals.”
“What if we don’t make it to finals?” Becky said.
I arched an eyebrow at her. I didn’t know about Becky, but I would make it to finals.
“Cara Jenkins,” the announcer called, “age sixteen, from
I stepped away from Becky, shaking off our conversation. I took a deep breath, twinkled my fingers, and scanned the route.