Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

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christi
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Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by christi » February 7th, 2010, 2:03 pm

I had:
His older self, haggard and worn beyond his years, warns Jakorus against the seductive power of manipulating destiny. Altering the outcome of events has been repeatedly attempted by previous Jakorus’ trapped in the time loop that was created, but all efforts make things worse. To prevent the rebellion from blossoming into civil war, Jakorus learns of innocents he will murder, friends he’ll be required to betray, and the immoral choices that he must repeat in order to restore the original timeline.

Query Shark (Janet Reid) says:
This paragraph is as convoluted as the time loop you're describing. What you want to say here is that the Hurler isn't the first Jakorus to come forward, or go backward in time to try and fix things. All that travelling through time has only made things worse. Now, he not only has to fix the problem, he has to un-convolute the mess his previous selves made. And that means murder, betrayal, and best of all, immoral choices!

So I tried this:
Trapped in a time loop, previous Jakorus’ have repeatedly tried to alter the outcome of events, but all efforts make things worse. To prevent the rebellion from blossoming into civil war, Jakorus learns of innocents he will murder, friends he’ll be required to betray, and the immoral choices that he must repeat in order to restore the original timeline.

---------------------

Please OH PLEASE help me figure this out. I’m terrified my revisions will ruin my chance to submit to her (since she hinted she might have looked at it if I'd gotten it right).

Also feel free to head over there and comment how totally awesomesauce it sounds and you can’t WAIT to buy a copy because it sounds like the most amazing thing since Tivo was conceived.

Okay, I’m kidding about the last part. I don’t want to get in trouble. But any thoughts on this paragraph would be greatly appreciated.
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by Ghost in the Machine » February 8th, 2010, 2:12 pm

Hi Christie,

Congrats on getting sharked! This is a tough paragraph. Your version below is much better. I’ll see if I can add anything.

Trapped in a time loop, previous Jakorus’ have repeatedly tried to alter the outcome of events, but all efforts make things worse. To prevent the rebellion from blossoming into civil war, Jakorus learns of innocents he will murder, friends he’ll be required to betray, and the immoral choices that he must repeat in order to restore the original timeline.

Comment: Why, oh why, did you have to name him Jackorus? Is the plural Jackorusi? Jackorus’s? Ugh. How many Jacks are there and do they hang out together? Work together?

Suggestion: Trapped in a time loop, multiple versions of Jackorus struggle to alter the outcome of events, but in vain. They only make things worse.

Comment: The second sentence is trying to do too much. Jackorus wants to prevent the rebellion from blossoming into civil war and he must restore the original timeline. Are these two events linked? Will the first result in the second? If so you might say:

Suggestion: To prevent the rebellion from blossoming into civil war, the present Jakorus must murder innocents, betray friends, and repeat immoral choices. If the war is stopped, the original timeline will be restored.

Or

Not only will these unthinkable tasks prevent war, they must be endured to restore the original timeline.


Ghost in the Machine

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christi
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by christi » February 8th, 2010, 3:12 pm

Thanks so much, Ghost! You were such a help. Now, here's the whole thing together with some new edits. How does this read? And I have no idea how to pluralize his name.

Dear Unattainable Agent,

Hurled twenty years into the future, young Jakorus is confronted with a horrifying truth: his world has changed, and it’s his fault.

His home, the island of Cybraxas, teeters at the brink of civil war. Magical creatures have secretly co-existed with humans for centuries, but the illusion of peace crumbles when a rebellious faction fights to overturn their primary law: Humans are not food.

Trapped in a time loop, many versions of Jakorus have tried to alter the outcome of events, but they only make things worse. Now his task will be to restore the original timeline by murdering innocents, betraying friends, and repeating the same immoral choices that the original Jakorus made. If he fails, the rebellion could blossom into civil war.

Returned to his own time with strict instructions of what must be done to save his people, Jakorus has his own problem: in the future there are two of him, and they both love the same girl.

Set in modern day, TIME TOURISM is a YA fantasy novel of approximately 125,000 words. It stands alone as a single book, but has series potential. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Best Regards,

Lewzer
Would you sign my story for a Klondike bar?

http://christigoddard.blogspot.com/

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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by Tycoon » February 8th, 2010, 4:13 pm

[quote="christi"]Thanks so much, Ghost! You were such a help. Now, here's the whole thing together with some new edits. How does this read? And I have no idea how to pluralize his name.


Trapped in a time loop, many versions of Jakorus have tried to alter the outcome of events, but they only make things worse. Now his task will be to restore the original timeline by murdering innocents, betraying friends, and repeating the same immoral choices that the original Jakorus made. If he fails, the rebellion could blossom into civil war.

If versions of himself are trapped.. wouldn't they still be trying to alter events?


My suggestion on how to get around the pluralization of his name...

Trapped in a time loop, many versions of Jakorus are still trying to alter the outcome of events, but they only making things worse. In order to restore the original timeline, young Jakorus must murder innocents, betray friends, and repeat the same immoral choices that his (dopplegangers or mirror images) are making. If he fails, the rebellion could blossom into civil war.

Tell me what you think,

All other paragraphs I love.

Regards

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christi
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by christi » February 8th, 2010, 4:22 pm

Great suggestions, Tycoon. I changed it to this:

Trapped in a time loop, many versions of Jakorus have tried to alter the outcome of events, but they only make things worse. In order to restore the original timeline, Jakorus must murder innocents, betray friends, and repeat the same immoral choices that the original Jakorus made. If he fails, the rebellion could blossom into civil war.


There's only two of him: the one from the past and the one from the future. A 17 year old goes forward and meets himself, goes back, messes up, then gets older. When he gets older, a new 17 year old him shows up, meets him, goes back, messes up, gets older. This is repeated a whole lot by dozens and dozens, but in the end, there is only ever 2 of them at one time in the future. I know how confusing it can be, sorry. :-(
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by Ghost in the Machine » February 8th, 2010, 4:41 pm

Hey Christie,

You make me laugh. Craptastic – that’s just too perfect. Okay, I’ll tweak.

Dear Unattainable Agent,

Hurled twenty years into the future, young Jakorus is confronted with a horrifying truth: his world has changed, and it’s his fault.

Comment: Is the comma after “changed” really necessary? Your call, but it’s not a long phrase and taking it out helps the flow.

His home, the island of Cybraxas, teeters at the brink of civil war. Magical creatures have secretly co-existed with humans for centuries, but the illusion of peace crumbles when a rebellious faction fights to overturn their primary law: Humans are not food.

Comment: When I read “rebellious faction”, I wasn’t sure if you were referring to humans or creatures.

There is a lot goin’ on in the second sentence. A break might help.

Suggestion: For centuries humans lived in peace, unaware of the magical creatures sharing their world. Peace crumbles when a rebellious faction of creatures breaks their primary law: Humans are not food.

Comment: I’m guessing the rebellious creatures ate someone already.


Trapped in a time loop, many versions of Jakorus have tried to alter the outcome of events, (only to make) things worse. Now (Jakorus must) restore the original timeline by murdering innocents, betraying friends, and repeating the same immoral choices (made by his original incarnation). If he fails, the rebellion could blossom into civil war.

Returned to his own time with strict instructions of what must be done to save his people, Jakorus has (his own – another) problem: in the future there are two of him, and they both love the same girl.

Set in modern day, TIME TOURISM is a YA fantasy novel of approximately 125,000 words. It stands alone as a single book, but has series potential. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Comment: I read this and think “series” is a typo for serious. Not a good thing. How about “This stand alone book has the potential to become a series” or “I would like to extend this stand alone book to a series”.

Best Regards,

Lewzer

Better Regards,

Hiding behind a pen-name to critique queries so I don’t have to face more rejection from literary agents. Top that!

Ghost in the Machine

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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by christi » February 8th, 2010, 5:08 pm

Thanks so much Ghost. As always, you're a great help. I think I've beat this thing to death, though. I'm never going to do this again. Until I have to ;-)

So now on, no more revisions from me. Everyone has been over-the-top helpful and I'm more grateful than I can express (and for a writer, that's pretty bad, huh?).
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by JustineDell » February 8th, 2010, 7:30 pm

christi wrote:Thanks so much Ghost. As always, you're a great help. I think I've beat this thing to death, though. I'm never going to do this again. Until I have to ;-)

So now on, no more revisions from me. Everyone has been over-the-top helpful and I'm more grateful than I can express (and for a writer, that's pretty bad, huh?).
A writer at a loss for words *GASP!!* Happens to me all the time....LOL - it's pathetic. I wait til you post a new one to take a gander. Ghost gave me some good advice not too long ago: take a step back from it, let it stew for a few days and then tackle it again. It totally worked for me, maybe it will help you digest everything?

Good luck! ;-)

~JD

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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by Krista G. » February 12th, 2010, 1:08 am

christi wrote:Dear Unattainable Agent,

Hurled twenty years into the future, young Jakorus is confronted with a horrifying truth: his world has changed, and it’s his fault. This horrifying truth seems a little too vague to be really impactful. How has his world changed, and how is it his fault?

His home, the island of Cybraxas, teeters at the brink of civil war. Magical creatures have secretly co-existed with humans for centuries, but the illusion of peace crumbles when a rebellious faction fights to overturn their primary law: Humans are not food.

Trapped in a time loop, many versions of Jakorus have tried to alter the outcome of events, but they only make things worse. Now his task will be to restore the original timeline by murdering innocents, betraying friends, and repeating the same immoral choices that the original Jakorus made. I'm confused as to why this is the case. Also, saying it like this makes me not like Jakorus very much, and you want your MC to be sympathetic. That doesn't mean he has to be nice - I just need to understand him better, and feel more of his inner struggle, if I'm going to root for him. If he fails, the rebellion could blossom into civil war. You could make this sentence more forceful by changing the "could" to "will." But mostly, this sentence just leaves me asking why. How are these two events connected?

Returned to his own time with strict instructions of what must be done to save his people, Jakorus has his own problem: in the future there are two of him, and they both love the same girl.

Set in modern day (But I thought this was set on the mythical island of Cybraxas...), TIME TOURISM is a YA fantasy novel of approximately 125,000 words. It stands alone as a single book, but has series potential. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Best Regards,

Lewzer
Don't give up hope, Christi! Keep digging, keep fighting. Sooner or later, it will work out - or you'll write another book and realize how much more you like that one, anyway:)
Author of THE REGENERATED MAN (G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers, Winter 2015)
Represented by Kate Schafer Testerman of kt literary
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by OtherLisa » February 12th, 2010, 4:34 am

Boy, it is really interesting watching the process here and how much you've improved this, Christi!

I know it's the time loop thing that's driving you nuts, but this is what I fixated on, the first line:
Hurled into the future twenty years, young Jakorus is confronted with a horrifying truth: his world has changed, and it’s his fault.
Here's the thing -- if it's 20 years in the future, his world will have changed whether he interferes or not. Think how much OUR world has changed in 20 years. Change happens.

I think what you mean here is that his world is really screwed up, and that it's his fault. I wish I had a suggestion for an elegant way to put that, but nothing comes immediately to mind.

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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by Nick » February 12th, 2010, 11:37 pm

Well, we could get technical and refer to it as timeline corruption. There's not really enough information to be able to say it was the "butterfly effect". Going back in time and murdering George Washington is not butterfly effect. That's just blatant corruption. Fun temporal corruption, but blatant. I mean the alternate heroes definitely do some blatant corrupting, but what about the original? It also sounds like it delves into temporal merging, which is related to divergent universe theory, so technically we could even call merging a branch of the multiverse; though I don't since it in fact causes the multiverse to become a universe. Yes, I'm getting crazy sci-fi nerd here. Bear with me. Like I said elsewhere, the Nick doesn't plan, he just throws the car in first and drives, so I have no idea where I'm taking all my science fiction mumbo jumbo. Right, more elegant way of putting things. Use sci-fi mumbo jumbo to describe it? Although it kind of depends upon the agent, I guess. It could easily throw the uninformed for a loop.

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christi
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by christi » February 12th, 2010, 11:59 pm

Yeah, I'm trying to avoid the sci-fi aspect of my book. It's MOSTLY fantasy. The time travel is done by magic not machine. And, because I'm a huge sci-fi dork, I decided to create my own time space continuum theory that has no bearing whatsoever in quantum physics. I'm a rebel like that.
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Re: Query Time Tourism again, just when you thought it was over

Post by Nick » February 13th, 2010, 12:10 am

christi wrote:no bearing whatsoever in quantum physics. I'm a rebel like that.
But but but but but but but but the universe is all inherently stringy and stuff!

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