A Little Space to Fill by Kerry Gretchen & Jill Cammack
I shouldn’t be doing this, she thought, leaning up on her elbows to look at him. He grinned and grabbed the edge of her panties with his teeth, then slowly pulled them down.
Beth Grant, at the prodding of her best friend, Jenna, has embarked on a “Year of Yes.” Jenna thinks Beth’s only identity is teaching college, so this year she’s determined to prove her wrong by saying “yes” to new things. In that spirit, she hits on a cute guy at the gas station and her life is changed in ways she could never imagine.
Unbeknownst to her, that guy was Todd Allman, the sexy, young star of the He-Man movie franchise. Beth may be the only person in Los Angeles who doesn’t care a thing about Hollywood, so when Todd enrolls in her class a month later, she doesn’t recognize him as a movie star or the guy from the gas station. Then when he starts to pursue her outside of class, she’s confused and annoyed. After all, she’s no typical leading lady and she’s nearly ten years his senior. Plus he’s her student! But even Beth can’t resist Todd’s charm and she can no longer deny they have a connection. Now she’s forced to choose between her reputation and job or her heart. But will Todd’s motives for taking her class make her regret her choice?
A Little Space to Fill is 96,000 words.
The Book Doctors: What a fun idea for a romantic comedy. This could absolutely be a Katherine Heigl movie. I love how you start with an actual piece of the book. It really gives me some proof of your pudding. Interestingly, it’s kind of sexually charged. I feel a bit of a disconnect between this piece of writing and the rest of the pitch, because after her initial seduction of Todd, there doesn’t seem to be that much erotic activity to your story. And I don’t feel like the whole idea of The Year of Yes gets followed all the way through the story. It’s not clear at the beginning of the story that she wants to fall in love, or doesn’t want to fall in love, or she wants a husband or a family or any of that stuff. It doesn’t seem like we’re rooting for her to succeed at finding a partner. Instead we’re rooting for her to say yes to life. So we want to see how she changes as a result of the Year of Yes. I love that he’s this hunky movie star in Los Angeles and she’s the only person in Southern California who doesn’t know who he is. That’s great. But are we rooting for them to get together? Or not? I understand that Todd is supposed to be something of an enigma. But I don’t understand why she falls for him. Telling us that he’s charming and sexy doesn’t really do the trick. Show us these things. It would be great if you showed us at the beginning what her life is like before the Year of Yes. Her friend Jenna doesn’t really seem to be a character in this story. So perhaps you could start with something like, “Beth Grant is tired of making tofu stir-fries for one on Friday night while binge-watching Girls on Netflix then reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover for the 47th time. So she decides to start a ‘Year of Yes’.” See how the specificity of that defines her as a human being whilst still giving us a sense of who she is? It doesn’t quite feel like the stakes are high enough at the end. Maybe you could give us more of what the worst-case scenario would be if everything goes wrong. The ending feels kind of flat. I would love some comparison titles.