Thanks Speedlever/crich70 - but the novel doesn't even count for the first stage of the competition - That is where I am very likely to fall short. If I get through that, the second stage is the first 5000 words of the story, which are not too bad.
In hindsight, I probably should have plagiarised the reviews people have left for me for the early competition stages.
Or at least have taken note of how they were written - but it's a little late for that now.
I know I have strengths in writing characters and creating a solid plot, but my main weaknesses are editing, infodump and pitches - and my weakness in pitching my story is one of the reasons I turned to self-publishing in the first place because I just couldn't get any attention from publishers at all.
I also know pitching a novel is a skill that I can learn, so I have to spend time with that.
Anyway, though I kind of cringe at it, this is my "pitch" to Amazon/Penguin for the competition.
Jonathan Carlson had everything an elite DEMON squadron pilot at the forefront of special operations could want. But when faced with a difficult ethical decision, his determination to do what is right destroys his career and he is forced to start over as a civilian.
Now he counsels those who can no longer afford the connection fees to maintain virtual lifestyles and are evicted from Mindspace. He has almost re-established himself in this new life when a chance encounter leads him to save the life of an Autonomous Non-Genetic Engineered Lifeform (ANGEL) named Rachel. This complicates matters for Jon when the the immensely powerful android built to protect humanity develops feelings for him.
As they start to bond, Rachel's presence draws Jon unknowingly into a secret project developing super-weapons intended to fight the next war. This places him on collision course with his old squadron, who still haven't forgiven him and who will do anything to get revenge for what they saw as betrayal.
Before Jon can be with Rachel, he must fight not only for his own life, but for the lives of the artificially intelligent he comes to care for. When his every step is being observed and influenced by powers he is not aware of, only by rising above those determined to bring him down will he uncover the truth about Project ARCHANGEL and his unanticipated role in it.
Turing Evolved is a captivating story that combines action, romance and suspense with hard science fiction. It engages the reader and asks them to consider what it is that makes us truly human while examining contemporary issues of Artificial Intelligence and ethics. The story concludes with a satisfying twist that leaves the reader re-examining previous chapters in a new light.
The pitch is something I've long struggled with ( synopsis too ) -
But a large number do make it through the first stage, so I am hopeful from that perspective too.