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NIGHTMARIST, YA Fantasy/Horror – Andy B. Davis


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Author: Andy B. Davis

Title: Nightmarist (Stanchions Hollow #1)

Genre: YA Fantasy/Horror

 

Comp Titles: 

 

The Darkest Minds (A. Bracken) meets There’s Someone Inside Your House (S. Perkins), taking place within the world of The Hazel Wood (M. Albert).

 

 

Hook Line: 

 

An unstable teenager, plagued by the brutal murder of his parents, must face the reality that his lucid nightmares are real creatures that must be destroyed before they consume the human world. 

 

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Pitch:

 

Sixteen-year-old Grimmond Scylent has had lucid nightmares his entire life. His godmother, Eralynn, always told him that they’re just hallucinations – that the creatures he sees while awake aren’t real – but Grimmond vividly remembers the thing that killed his parents when he was a little boy in Boston. And when that same nightmarish creature comes after him years later, Eralynn knows she can’t hide the truth from him any longer. He must be taken to the one place she swore to keep him away from: Stanchions Hollow in New England.

 

Grimmond and the other students at Stanchions Hollow share the ability to see the same nightmares. They are Nightmarists – the few who can drift between the waking world and the Nightmayr Realm to fight against its creatures. The Nightmayr Realm has suddenly begun to let loose an unprecedented wave of horrific creatures on any who are awake. And Malus Nebbick, a deranged Nightmarist, is the one releasing the creatures.

 

The insomniac world of Stanchions Hollow is restless with glowing-eyed gargoyles, disembodied voices, and towering trees that whisper as the Nightmarists walk past them. And it is among the sleep-starved Nightmarists-in-training where Grimmond must make unlikely friends and allies if he hopes to stop Malus and reseal the door to the Nightmayr Realm.

 

But Grimmond doesn’t suspect that Malus isn’t working alone. He doesn’t know that his efforts to close the Nightmayr Realm might only break the veil between both worlds, and release the darkest chaos yet. 

_____________________________________________________________________________

 

Prose Sample:

 

“Out with it – I’ll wait.”

Grimmond hadn’t said a word the entire way back to the police precinct. 

He hadn’t said anything, even before the arresting officer read him his Miranda rights while cuffing him. Now he kept his head bowed in the bright room with the two-way mirror, looking at the dried blood on his hands, wishing he could peel his eyes away from them. Blankly staring at his hands made him feel guilty, somehow, even though he knew he’d done nothing wrong.

Another hand smacked down on the table to get his attention. 

Grimmond didn’t jump, but stirred from his stupor to lock with the eyes across the table. The man introduced himself when he first walked in, but Grimmond was too out of it to hear. He was young, with combed hair, a clean-shaven face, and a look of pure arrogance.

“Five-foot-seven, I’d guess….” the man said with a victorious smirk. “A hundred forty pounds, maybe, soaking wet. Blue eyes, brown hair with some hippy blue streaks in it, skittish but not intimidated. Did I miss anything, aside from your problem with authority?”

Grimmond looked back down to his hands. He couldn’t stop thinking of the horror beneath the bridge, the sound of its chewing, and Erik’s pleas for help. 

“C’mon, kid, we’ve gotta get somewhere, or we’ll be here all night. Your name, at least.”

“I’m Grimmond Scylent,” he answered quietly. “I told you guys when I got here.” 

“Yeah, I remember you said that,” the man leaned forward and folded his hands. “It was just so ridiculous, I didn’t believe you. Ya see, when you’re a kid and don’t have a driver’s license yet, we can’t find a whole lot on you without your social security number. And you just happen to not know that, either, isn’t that what you said?”

“Haven’t had much use for it, being fifteen and all. Or sixteen, I suppose, in about an hour – ” 

“Blah, blah, blah,” the officer raised his hand like a shadow puppet, mocking him. “Cut the crap. You’re the one covered in blood, practically swam in it, it looks like, but I’m guessing it’s not yours. Oh, and someone seems to have forgotten their arm underneath that bridge. Think they’ll come back for it? It’s big, probably a white male’s, but the skin looked young. Fingers are too mangled to make a print.”

The young officer gauged every blink, every breath of Grimmond’s as he spoke. 

“So who was it? Who’s number eighty-four?”

Grimmond swallowed. 

“Number eighty-four?” 

Don’t play dumb again,” the officer sneered. “You wouldn’t be so rattled if it was a stranger.”

You’re smarter than you look, Grimmond wished he could say, but you’d be rattled too, if you saw what I did. 

Grimmond only swallowed again, keeping his eyes on his hands. He couldn’t stop thinking about Erik’s shredded body, but knew he couldn’t admit he knew him. That would lead to more questions, and if Grimmond told the man what he had seen, Grimmond would be in a psychiatric ward by sunrise.

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Bio:

 

NIGHTMARIST is the first novel I will have attempted to publish, but I would dearly love to write until my fingers fall off. I’ve always enjoyed putting my imagination on paper (even before going to college for materials engineering or spending more than a decade in the U.S. Army), but I’d never wished so greatly to attempt a career out of writing until recently. Writing is the one thing – truly, the only thing – that has remained a constant passion since the age of six, when I composed a delightfully awful short-story about ants on a picnic.

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