Query critique 6/10/21

Offer up your page (or query) for Nathan's critique on the blog.
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Nathan Bransford
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Joined: December 4th, 2009, 11:17 pm
Location: New York, NY

Query critique 6/10/21

Post by Nathan Bransford » June 6th, 2021, 2:44 pm

Want to see how your editing approach compares to mine?

Below is the query up for critique on the blog on Thursday. Feel free to chime in with comments, create your own redline (please note the "font colour" button above the posting box, which looks like a drop of ink), and otherwise offer feedback. When offering your feedback, please please remember to be polite and constructive. In order to leave a comment you will need to register an account in the Forums, which should be self-explanatory.

I'll be back with my own post on the blog and we'll literally be able to compare notes.

If you'd like to enter a query for a future Query Critique, please do so here.

Dear Agent,

Miriam’s boyfriend has been murdered, and she’s placing the blame on God. Hell-bent on rebelling against anything that has to do with church, including her hypocritical mother and the peer counseling that’s been forced upon her for showing up to youth group drunk, she has put up walls even the trumpets at Jericho would have trouble bringing down.
Though her peer counselors have the best of intentions, Miriam is perfectly content to be perfectly miserable, and she flings scripture back at them like Satan at the Last Temptation of Christ. One by one they count her a lost cause—an unrepentant sinner—until only her last option remains, but this new guy is not taking the same tactics as the rest of the counselors who came before him. Miriam can’t exactly trash his logic and deny his reasoning if he won’t debate Christianity with her like the rest.
Though he is effective in his unorthodox tactics and making progress where no one else could even scratch the surface, he is genuinely charming and handsome. Miriam, in addition to being angry at everyone for everything, is crippled by feelings of betrayal to her dead boyfriend when she even thinks about the possibility of moving on.
Especially with a Pastor’s Kid.
Desperate to have someone make sense of her wretched existence, she finally turns to God—waiting impatiently for answers as to why He lets bad things happen to good people. But when she finally does hear His voice, He asks her to do the impossible. He asks her to forgive: her boyfriend’s murderer, her alcoholic mother, and ultimately, herself.
Complete at 62,000 words, SECOND CHANCE is a YA Contemporary Christian novel that answers some tough questions about free will, forgiveness, and God’s hand in it all.
My debut novel, a YA Psychological Thriller titled STILL PHOTO, was released by Evernight Teen in 2014. It jumped to the top 5 in sales almost immediately after publication, and spent 11 months at #1. It has received excellent reviews, and was a finalist for ET’s Best YA and Killer Nashville Reader’s Choice awards. I am also an active member of the SCBWI, and have led the local critique group and taught several workshops on the craft of writing.
The first three chapters of SECOND CHANCE appear below for your consideration. Please let me know if you have any questions, comments, or if you would like to see more of the manuscript.
Thank you for your time.



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