Monday, March 3, 2014

I Need Your Help Query Time!

Well, we've got freezing rain again here in Northwest Arkansas. The kids are home from school, and at this rate I'm wondering what kind of summer break we're going to end up with. I'm not really complaining though. I enjoy having them around when they play nicely together. They're growing up too fast and will be gone before I know it.

Yesterday, K (kid #1) and I started putting together our A to Z Challenge posts. Yep, I like to have them scheduled in advance so I can concentrate on visiting other blogs. We'll probably work on more today. :)

My other goal for the week is to put together a query and then a pitch for FADE INTO ME. Here's my first go, all ready for your critique and comments. *sigh* I read it and think, "This really doesn't represent the smallest fraction of the story." And yet, I have to focus on one thing, the over arching  plot and not all the little things that make it complicated. I'm just afraid I'm leaving out the most interesting points. This is already at 330 words and I will need to add the "why I'm querying you" paragraph. Ug!

My problem is the backstory! I feel certain things don't make sense without it.

Help!!

Revision 2--Thanks Misha from UB!

Unknown to humans, aliens called Abhithians live among them. Their purpose: to nurture their greatest mistake—mankind.

Caedan Frey’s family has fulfilled this duty for thousands of years, but that doesn’t exempt him from his obligations as the prince of the Reparation. He must marry a human before his birthday or the throne will revert to a rival family. Their previous reigns saw the end of Atlantis, and The Plague in Europe. Caedan knows the sooner he marries, the better for everyone, and any girl will do. He's about to propose to someone when his soul mate stumbles into--and right out--of his arms.

Ryanne Killian might be his one shot at happiness while still fulfilling his responsibility to his people, but after a disastrous experience with love, she isn’t willing to give anyone else a chance. He’ll need to convince her to leave her world behind and marry him in two months time. Unfortunately, his rival sees his opportunity to get rid of Caedan, and keeping Ryanne away from him is all too easy.

FADE INTO ME is a contemporary YA Fantasy similar in style to Julie Kagawa's Iron King. My first novel, THE MAGIC WAKES was released by Wido Publishing in 2013.

Thank you for your time and consideration,


Revision 1--Thanks Robin!
Dear ___________,

Everything humans think they know about evolution is a lie. Aliens, called Abhithians, live among them sentenced to watch over and nurture their greatest mistake...

Abhithian Caedan Frey doesn't believe humans will ever evolve enough to see the magic, much less control it. But he is the prince of the Reparation and he must marry a human in order to fulfill an ancient promise. Bitter about his duty, Caedan figures any girl will do. He's about to propose to a girl when his anamchara or soul mate stumbles into--and right out--of his arms. Wonder of wonders, she's human!

Ryanne Killian doesn't believe in love or magic anymore. She just graduated from high school and acted as best man at her crush's wedding. Her life is not going as planned. Then strange colors in the sky draw her to the botanical gardens, and even though she’s vowed to never let anyone into her heart again, she steps straight into the arms of her soul mate. She can feel it, but can she trust it?

When Ryanne has a physical reaction to the magic, Caedan takes her to his world to recover. All of the Abhithians watch her with growing hope as she sees the swirling colors of magic. Ryanne doesn't feel like her growing attraction to Caedan is enough reason to marry him, and she demands to be taken home. Crossing the barrier between worlds causes her to forget everything about the magical realm.

It's time for Caedan to work harder to help Ryanne fall in love with him. Unfortunately, a rival sees this as his chance to steal the throne from Caedan's family. All he has to do is keep the two unlikely lovers separated until after Caedan's birthday.

FADE INTO ME is a contemporary YA Fantasy similar in style to Julie Kagawa's Iron King. My first novel, THE MAGIC WAKES was released by Wido Publishing in 2013.

Thanks for your time and consideration,

Original
Dear ___________,

Everything humans think they know about evolution is a lie. Aliens, called Abhithians, live among them sentenced to watch over and nurture their greatest mistake...

Abhithian Caedan Frey is destined to marry a human girl to fulfill an ancient promise. If he's lucky she'll be able to see and use the magic of the earth so his people will be free to ascend to their home world once more. Any girl will do according to the laws of reparation, but Caedan would like to find his soul mate. He's running out of time when his anamchara stumbles into--and right out--of his arms.

Ryanne Killian doesn't believe in love or magic anymore. She just graduated from high school and acted as best man at her crush's wedding. Her life is not going as planned. Then strange colors in the sky draw her to the botanical gardens, and even though she’s vowed to never let anyone into her heart again, she steps straight into the arms of her soul mate. She can feel it, but can she trust it?

When Ryanne has a physical reaction to the magic, Caedan takes her to his world to recover. All of the Abhithians watch her with growing hope as she sees the swirling colors of magic. But Ryanne's growing attraction to Caedan isn't enough reason for her to marry him. She demands to be taken home, and crossing the barrier between the worlds causes her to forget everything.

It's time for Caedan to work harder to help Ryanne fall in love with him. Unfortunately, a rival sees this as his chance to steal the throne from Caedan's family. All he has to do is keep the two unlikely lovers separated until after Caedan's birthday.

FADE INTO ME is a contemporary YA Fantasy similar in style to Julie Kagawa's Iron King. My first novel, THE MAGIC WAKES was released by Wido Publishing in 2013.

Thanks for your time and consideration,

****

The biggest point I left out because I'm not sure how to work it in with the word count--
Ryanne feels unworthy because she was date rap ed in the past. Because of that she fights forming a relationship with Caedan.

7 comments:

  1. Might need a little tightening if you want to work that point in. Otherwise, it reads great. I have heard the first line should always introduce the main character though.
    Ice and snow might hit us tonight. What is up with this weather?
    And always smart to preschedule those Challenge posts.

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  2. I don't think the date rape point needs to be in the query.

    I have questions about what you've written. The second paragraph says that "f he's lucky she'll be able to see and use the magic of the earth so his people will be free to ascend to their home world once more." Does that mean he needs to find a human girl who can see the magic? Will his people not be able to ascend if she cannot see the magic? This question is further confused by the next sentence. "Any girl will do according to the laws of reparation, but Caedan would like to find his soul mate." Or will any girl do? One who can see the magic or one who can't? It sounds like it is irrelevant to Caeden whether she can see the magic or she can't since his goal is to find his "soulmate."

    In the second sentence if you want to allude to her tortured past, that last sentence (the question) would be where I'd do it. Something like... She feels connected to Caeden, but will fear, caused by events from her painful past, rule her choice?... or something like that. It need tweaking.

    Once the magic issue is established in the second paragraph, the rest will flow easier. It seems like in the fourth one that seeing the magic is necessary (and any girl will not do) because the people are relieved that she can see it.

    I like the ending with the major conflict. Good stuff.

    I think this is closer to ready than you think. It just requires a little tweaking.

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    Replies
    1. Excellent questions Robin! Here's the answer and now I need to figure out how to get this into the query I suppose.

      The laws of the Reparation (which occurs every 1000 years) simply say the heir to the throne must marry a human to remind them of their purpose--help the humans evolve to the point they are like the Abhithians. Caedan doesn't believe this will ever be possible. That's why he doesn't care so much about finding someone receptive to magic, he's just pouting that he has to marry a human and not get to search for his anamchara. Lucky for him his soul mate is a human, and lucky for his people she's more than any of them could hope for.

      I'm wondering if I can just leave out the part about her past. It affects who she is, but I don't go into great detail about it.

      Thanks for the help! I'll see what tweaking I can figure out for Caedan's paragraph.

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  3. Revision 2 looks pretty good. The third paragraph still needs something--a bit of a trim, perhaps?

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  4. Revision 2 is better. Especially the first line got better. When I looked at it the first thingI thought was that it's too long. It's not. I copied it and pasted into word and it's the right length. (It's technically one word too long but that's fine. Although, you still might try to trim some). When I teach query classes I teach to break your novel into plot points and use the 6th and 7th plot points to create stakes. But I think you have a pretty good handle on plot in this. You might be able to bring more urgency to the stakes. What I recommend tweaking is voice. Match the tone of your book as closely as possible. And these are picky things, but they might help you stand out.

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    Replies
    1. I totally agree on the voice. Any suggestion how to do that. My head is still stuck on the fact this book is written in two distinct voices, Caedan and Ryanne. We flip back and forth between the two. I guess I need to put myself back in Caedan's head for the query, but I feel so bad leaving Ryanne out of it. This is a good reason for not writing in multiple POVs. LOL.

      I'll keep thinking on it and try to zero in on Caedan's voice again. As for plot points, the rival comes in for the last third of the book, so pretty close to the 7th point. He comes it right about the time Ryanne is ready to give in to Caedan. :)

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  5. I think Revision 2 is a big improvement over the previous two. Also, nothing confused me so I think your worry about the missing background information is unwarranted. :)

    Does your daughter blog as well?

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