The Moon Ran After Her by Jan Flynn
In her village in eastern Anatolia, fifteen-year-old Ani is proud of her reputation as a tomboy, climbing trees and hatching plans to join her brother in America and become a nurse. Her sister Mariam, a young mother and teacher, looks forward to reuniting with her husband in faraway Constantinople. But it’s 1915 and history is about to take a horrific turn. The sisters are wrenched apart and their family shattered as the Ottoman oppression of Armenians escalates to wholesale slaughter. Traveling different paths, each sister faces a wrenching choice.
Set against the backdrop of the 20th century’s first genocide and based on firsthand accounts of the author’s relatives, The Moon Ran After Her is an unflinching yet uplifting tale of survival.
The Book Doctors: First of all, we love that this is about a tomboy in Anatolia. And that you’re shedding light on human horrors that have been forgotten. It’s so important to tell your story. It’s so important that these voices are heard. And we can see seeds of what’s happening in the world today planted in the fields of these atrocities. So we definitely believe there’s a book here. But this pitch does not do your book justice. First of all, you have 250 words. So right now it’s way too short. We need to know more about our hero and her sister. Paint us a picture of what their life was like using beautiful language to describe that world, which is absolutely foreign to us. Show us the scene where they are wrenched apart and their family shattered, show us the Ottoman oppression. We need to see that you can create a scene in a very short amount of time, using very few words, which wrenches our heart. It’s not enough just to tell us that they travel different paths, and that they faced wrenching choices. One could say that about hundreds of thousands of books. There’s not enough proof in this pudding. Give us images of what the sisters will face, show us the consequences of the war-torn, ravaged country they leave behind. Show us the ghosts of the dead that haunt them in their new lives, the yearning they feel for each other. That’s what will make this pitch soar. Powerful, devastating, relatively unknown story of a people brutally destroyed, and the consequences for two sisters. Pitch needs to be fleshed out, characters illuminated, action revealed.
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