Date of Award


Document Type

USM Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



First Advisor

James Patrick Kelly


Stonecoast MFA, mystery genre, journalism, young adult fiction, friendship


The rigorous journalism program at wealthy upper-class high school Wetherington Heights Academy has produced prize-winning stories, graduates who go on to elite universities, a nearly twenty-year winning streak for the top national student publication award… And one grisly murder. Managing editor Sara Morton has been murdered in the lab on deadline weekend, when she was just on the verge of filing a mysterious and important story. Features Editor Lucy Knight never liked Sara, who wasn’t known for her warmth and had recently made a play to steal Lucy’s popular boyfriend, but feels duty bound to find out what she can about Sara’s death, and the secret story she was working on at the time of it. The first installment of a three-book young adult mystery series, Deadline explores the idea of betrayal. Over the course of the novel, Lucy must decipher which of her friends she can trust—and whether she can trust herself to solve the case before the whole staff falls apart, or worse, ends up dead.


This thesis is restricted to USM access only.