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CATWALK QUEENS

Shelley Schenk/Cedric Godefroy

Upmarket Women’s Fiction 

85,000 words

Comp: DEVIL WEARS PRADA meets THE SCARLET LETTER 

     

Hook: A bullied and anxious American waitress restarts her life in Paris and finds shocking success on the fashion catwalks, but a torrid love affair with her photographer gives her friend, the queen of Parisian catwalk cancel culture, the ammunition to bring her to ruin. 

 

Pitch:

Six foot tall Erin Donnelly has been bullied her whole life. She’s known in her working class Boston neighborhood as the hideous giraffe and she believes it. She tries to restart her life in Paris and is a smash hit on the catwalks with her unique looks. Her jealous friend, Delphina Motier, queen of Parisian catwalk cancel culture, targets her for a devastating online public humiliation. Borderline Delphina films Erin and her secret boyfriend, fashion photographer Gilles Delacourt, having sex. It’s posted on France’s biggest gossip site and goes viral around the world. Gilles is labeled a pervert and is blackballed for consorting with a model. Erin’s lucrative contract as the face of an international sustainable clothing brand is rescinded and she is recognized and harassed everywhere she goes. Erin and Gilles break up from the intense pressure. Erin realizes she must summon the strength to fight back as Delphina has destroyed people online before. Can she survive a public shaming on an epic scale and save her career and her sanity? And is Gilles lost to her forever?

Prose Sample

 

catwalk_queen

@delphina348   on Instagram and Tik Tok                               

 Vidéo drop: “Word has it last year’s runway phenom Anishka was released from her agency contract for consorting with a certain Dior stylist and her mom’s boyfriend and there’s photos.  She’s hightailed it back to the Ukraine where she’s been spotted tending bar. So funny! 1/2

 

Your favorite catwalk carouser is off to the Malamuze show with a friend. They just have to find her a front row seat! Americans do so need lessons in style. 2/2

 3:24 PM – 4/14/18  Twitter for Phone

450,000 retweets     2,396,020 likes

          
            
@lillianedufour38 

           Replying to @catwalk_queen        5h

     OOOH UR SO DELICIOUSLY MEAN. I bet ur gorgeous 2.

    1 retweet             3 likes

                 @francois2018                               5h

           she went to my school. not that hot

           84 retweets     157 likes

                 @millierides                                   5h

               I heard she’s a bit off.  Something about a  fall from a horse.

               0 retweets       2 likes            

                 @Football_king45

              The horse is no doubt dead for crossing this cow.

               86 retweets       141 likes

 

Excerpt from chapter 3

“I’d like one of those long baguettes, please,” Erin said.

“We don’t make long ones. Only short,” the clerk said, nodding at a tray on the far right in the front display case.

Erin lifted her chin toward the golden stack behind his head. “But they’re right there.”

“They are reserved,” he said without a trace of irony.

 The young woman sitting nearby stood up and approached the counter, clutching a brand new Louis Vuitton bag. Her black eye-liner was smudged. She was on the fringe of being too sexy, but she was incredibly beautiful too. 

Erin had always associated Montmartre with artists. And it was that. Art was everywhere- on the streets and in the galleries. It had been drawn, painted or stuck on the walls all over the arrondisement. Even the stop signs and newspapers boxes had been tagged with an image. But Erin thought of the neon signs of the sex shops she’d seen near the Moulin Rouge. Paris had an underbelly. This woman was obviously an escort.

The woman raked her eyes over the clerk, stopping to gaze at his lips. She pointed her breasts upward and pulled at a tendril of her hair that had come loose. “Why don’t you give me one of those long baguettes?” Her accent was thick. And Russian.

He grabbed one, wrapped it in paper, and gave it to her. She turned her attention to Erin, piercing her with her black eyes and handed over the baguette. Erin gaped at the proffered golden baton. For a moment she was dazzled and couldn’t breathe. She paused, unsure what to do.

“Go on,” the escort said in a cool, husky voice. “Take it.” She winked. “You looked so desperate at not having this baguette. If you want something, Paris is a question of seduction."

"I don't know if I could do that," Erin said.

"You don't have to do anything. It's just a fun little game. You must find some confidence. You’ll never get anywhere in this world without it."

 

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