All thoughts are welcome...Query**

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shadow
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All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by shadow » December 27th, 2009, 9:36 am

Scroll to the bottom for the newest version!

Ok guys I am so excited. I just finished my second novel :) (smile) lol. This novel was more of an easier write than the first one that I am still working on and will be posting a query of once I finish those darn rewrites, but meanwhile I was working on MY LUCKY YEAR. So this is the first time I am posting a query up for any novel that I ever wrote. Here goes.
~shadow~ P.S. I actually have 2 versions. I like both but it would be very helpful if you guys told me which one is better and critiqued the better one. Oh and lastly is the plot any good? Is it any interesting? I wrote this story in 3 months so I am unsure if it is as quality in plot as the one that I have been working on for quite a bit longer... Thanks!

Query #1:

Dear Agent,

Christie is supposed to be living the best year of her life but nothing could make this year any worse when she realizes that she has no date to her last prom.

Christie’s best friend can’t stand her depression and takes her to her far away aunt that works with Voodoo. At first Christie is skeptical but then she finally agrees. After a long and strange session filled with incense and chanting, nothing changes until 17 days later when Christie goes to school. Suddenly everybody is paying attention to her, particularly the hot guys that never threw a glance at her before. At first Christie loves the attention that she is getting, but then things start to get creepy when a guy that she rejected commits suicide. From then on everything is swerving out of control. Christie’s best friend won’t speak to her any longer, and her mother seems to hate her. The only one that Christie really can rely on is the guy that she never really noticed was there for her all along.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?

(Personal Info and writing credentials)

Query #2

Dear Agent,

When Christie realizes that she has no date to her senior prom, she falls into a deep depression. In attempt to cheer her up, her best friend takes her to a Voodoo master. At first, Christie is skeptical of the incense, and the chanting but, seventeen days later, every male high schooler begins to surround her.

Christie loves the attention, but things start to get creepy when a scorned lover commits suicide. From then on, everything is swerving out of control. Christie’s best friend won’t speak to her, and her mother seems to hate her. The only one that Christie really can rely on is the guy that she never really noticed was there for her all along.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?

(Personal Info and writing credentials)

I tried to make the queries short and to the point, and yes there isnt that much more to the story then what I have told. Thanks so much!
Once again.
~shadow~
Last edited by shadow on December 27th, 2009, 12:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
All things writing, visit my blog http://arielemerald.blogspot.com/

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Dakota388
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by Dakota388 » December 27th, 2009, 10:26 am

shadow wrote:Ok guys I am so excited. I just finished my second novel :) (smile) lol. This novel was more of an easier write than the first one that I am still working on and will be posting a query of once I finish those darn rewrites, but meanwhile I was working on MY LUCKY YEAR. So this is the first time I am posting a query up for any novel that I ever wrote. Here goes.
~shadow~ P.S. I actually have 2 versions. I like both but it would be very helpful if you guys told me which one is better and critiqued the better one.Definitely the second one, IMO. Oh and lastly is the plot any good? I can't comment as this isn't my genre.Is it any interesting? I wrote this story in 3 months so I am unsure if it is as quality in plot as the one that I have been working on for quite a bit longer... Thanks!

Query #1:

Dear Agent,

Christie is supposed to be living the best year of her life but nothing could make this year any worse when she realizes that she has no date to her last prom.

Christie’s best friend can’t stand her depression and takes her to her far away aunt that works with Voodoo. At first Christie is skeptical but then she finally agrees. After a long and strange session filled with incense and chanting, nothing changes until 17 days later when Christie goes to school. Suddenly everybody is paying attention to her, particularly the hot guys that never threw a glance at her before. At first Christie loves the attention that she is getting, but then things start to get creepy when a guy that she rejected commits suicide. From then on everything is swerving out of control. Christie’s best friend won’t speak to her any longer, and her mother seems to hate her. The only one that Christie really can rely on is the guy that she never really noticed was there for her all along.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?

(Personal Info and writing credentials)This one feels really informative but bland.

Query #2

Dear Agent,

When Christie realizes that she has no date to her senior prom, she falls into a deep depression. In an attempt to cheer her up, her best friend takes her to a Voodoo master. At first, Christie is skeptical of the incense, and the chanting but, seventeen days later, every sugg. every boy in school (gives it a more YA feel to call them boys, I think)male high schooler begins to surround her.

Christie loves the attention, but things start to get creepyIt might just be me but I would think creepy is a little of an understatement for how someone might feel if they thought they might be the cause of an ex-boyfriend's suicide when a scorned lover commits suicide.Also, as I said, I'm not a YA reader but is it appropriate to call a high schooler a lover? Is that common in the genre or would something more teenager-like be better? Like boyfriend? From then on, everything is swerving a tad passive. Maybe, "Now, everything swerves out of control..." It might help to have an example showing us how everything went out of control instead of simply telling us that it has. out of control. Christie’s best friend won’t speak to her, and her mother seems to hate her. There it is. You could probably get rid of the out of control sentence as it is telling us what you are about to show us. Make sense?The only one that Christie really can rely on is the guy that she never really noticed and has been there for her all along. was there for her all along.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?

(Personal Info and writing credentials)

I tried to make the queries short and to the point, and yes there isnt that much more to the story then what I have told. Thanks so much!
Once again.
~shadow~
I'm not completely sure what the problem is. Does the curse make her unlikable to those she loves? Does she have to go against the curse to get back to normal? If so, why is that difficult (breaking the curse, I mean)?

Good luck.
"The Light of Epertase"-A fantasy novel coming August 1st from Rhemalda Publishing

esther
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by esther » December 27th, 2009, 11:34 am

Dear Agent,

When Christie realizes that she has no date to her senior prom, she falls into a deep depression. In an attempt to cheer her up, her best friend takes her to a Voodoo master. At first, Christie is skeptical of the incense, and the chanting but, seventeen days later Umm... why seventeen, out of all the other numbers?, every male high schooler begins to surround her Male high schooler?? i wonder if it just might be better to say "every guy at school".

Christie loves the attention, but things start to get creepy when a scorned lover word choice could be more coherant commits suicide. From then on, everything is swerving "swerves" instead would be the stronger verb to use out of control. Christie’s best friend won’t speak to her, and her mother seems to hate her Her mom?? I don't get the connection. Is this really necessary for the plot?. The only one that you don't have to use "that" here Christie really can rely on is the guy that she never really noticed was there for her all along. Interesting. Is he under the same spell as every other guy? What makes him different? I'm not sure if you should add more description about him even though i feel like I should know more about him. But Keeping him a mystery might pique the agents so you'll have to think about that

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?

(Personal Info and writing credentials)

I tried to make the queries short and to the point, and yes there isnt that much more to the story then what I have told. Thanks so much!
Once again.
~shadow~
Wow, I'm impressed! I don't know why I can't write such a short query :(
but i love that fact that it's concise!
I'm not a professional, but I hope my suggestions were helpful
Good luck and Happy Holidays to you!! :)

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shadow
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by shadow » December 27th, 2009, 11:41 am

Thanks so much Dakota and Esther. I really liked your suggestions. The reason Christies mom and friend are upset with her is because ever since all those guys started liking her Christie started being rude to her mom and ignoring her friend...The curse is more like a love hex on all the guys that surround Christie and didn't ever have any feelings or attractions to her, so that does not include Armando the guy that Christie never really paid attention to herself. The only way to break the hex is for Christie to fall in love with the one she is meant to fall in love with. Christie does not understand this until the end when she actually sees that Armando had feelings for her all along and she does as well, so yay happy ending. 17 days is because she is 17 years old. Before I revise my query with your guys' suggestions, do you think I should add anyof these details to it? Thanks so much!
~shadow~
All things writing, visit my blog http://arielemerald.blogspot.com/

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esther
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by esther » December 27th, 2009, 11:55 am

Thanks so much Dakota and Esther. I really liked your suggestions. The reason Christies mom and friend are upset with her is because ever since all those guys started liking her Christie started being rude to her mom and ignoring her friend...The curse is more like a love hex on all the guys that surround Christie and didn't ever have any feelings or attractions to her, so that does not include Armando the guy that Christie never really paid attention to herself. The only way to break the hex is for Christie to fall in love with the one she is meant to fall in love with. Christie does not understand this until the end when she actually sees that Armando had feelings for her all along and she does as well, so yay happy ending. 17 days is because she is 17 years old. Before I revise my query with your guys' suggestions, do you think I should add anyof these details to it? Thanks so much!
I see the dilemma you're in. I'm thinking maybe the query would be better off without mentioning the 17 days because it's confusing and if you try to explain that, you'll have to explain in way too much detail.

Oh and I think the behind story to Christies mom should be left out. Again, too much detail. Instead, you could just say the hex puts a strain on her other relationships (or add this so that the agent isn't confused). That way the agent knows this tension exists, but isn't bogged down with too much information. Just a suggestion.

Maybe include the main character's name (the guy's I mean) and even allude to a possible way to get rid of the hex.

Anyways, I hope this helps!
Good Luck!

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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by shadow » December 27th, 2009, 12:12 pm

Thanks again Esther! You are really helpful. Here is a revision, I hope this is better.

Dear Agent,

When Christie realizes that she has no date to her senior prom, she falls into a deep depression. In an attempt to cheer her up, her best friend takes her to a Voodoo master. At first, Christie is skeptical of the incense, and the chanting but, days later, every boy high schooler begins to surround her.

Christie loves the attention, but the nightmare begins when a rejected boyfriend commits suicide. From then on, everything swerves out of control. All of Christie’s relationships are strained after the hex, and the boys go over the top to try to impress Christie even if it means juggling fiery torches for her. The only one Christie really can rely on is the guy friend that she never really noticed was there for her all along. But there is only one way to stop the hex, and that is falling for your true love before it’s too late.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?
Last edited by shadow on December 27th, 2009, 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
All things writing, visit my blog http://arielemerald.blogspot.com/

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esther
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by esther » December 27th, 2009, 12:30 pm

Dear Agent,

When Christie realizes that she has no date to her senior prom, she falls into a deep depression. In an attempt to cheer her up, her best friend takes her to a Voodoo master. At first, Christie is skeptical of the incense, and the chanting but, days later, every boy high schooler (since it says senior prom, i think high school is inferred)begins to surround her.

Christie loves the attention, but the nightmare begins when a rejected boyfriend commits suicide. From then on, everything swerves out of control. All of Christie’s relationships are strained after the hex, and the boys go over the top to try to impress Christie even if it means juggling fiery torches for her (not so sure about this part). The only one Christie really can rely on is the guy friend that ("that" makes it seem choppy, but that might just be me. See if anyone else comment about this :) she never really noticed was there for her all along. But (is the "but" necessary??) there is only one way to stop the hex, and that is falling for your true love before it’s too late.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?
Okay, i hope you're not getting sick of me, but I had just a few comments :)
I feel like I'm nick picking, and its probably just me. I'd say wait and see if anyone comments about the same things and consider changes.
By the way, i like it!

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BransfordGroupie
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by BransfordGroupie » December 27th, 2009, 4:31 pm

Hi Shadow,

I thought I would put my 2 cents in .... Late I know.
shadow wrote:Dear Agent,

When Christie realizes that she has no date to her senior prom, she falls into a deep depression. In an attempt to cheer her up, her best friend takes her to a Voodoo master. At first, Christie is skeptical of the incense, and the chanting but, days later, every boy at high schooler begins to surround her.

Christie loves the attention, but the nightmare begins when a rejected boyfriend commits suicide. From then on, everything swerves out of control. All of Christie’s relationships are strained after the hex, and the boys go over the top to try to impress Christie even if it means juggling fiery torches for her. The only one person Christie really can (just my personal taste, but you might want to reverse these two words .... Christie can really ...) rely on is maybe you could add his name here, thea guy friend that she never really noticed was there for her all along. But there is only one way to stop the hex, and that is falling for your true love before it’s too late.

MY LUCKY YEAR is a 75,000 word YA novel set in modern day England. Would you be interested in the manuscript?
I know it's not much, but I hope it helps. Good luck!
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c.ska
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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by c.ska » December 28th, 2009, 7:25 am

shadow, I definitely like the latest revision the best, well done ; ) One thought though...If your story is really set in modern day England, you might need to revise a few words and definitions here and there to get the right 'feel'...'senior prom' for instance sounds very North American, as does 'high school'...school is sufficient...and perhaps 'school prom'. Best of luck! c.ska

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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by Joel Q » December 28th, 2009, 11:32 am

I totally agree with c.ska about setting up the location and using appropriate terms for school in England. Specifically, when I see Voodoo, my first thought is New Orleans. I don't know enough about England to associate Voodoo with it. Maybe bring England towards the top of the query to set it up.

Also, I don't like the wording here... "every boy high schooler begins to" I saw other comments on it as well. Maybe... every boy in school or something.

Here... "a rejected boyfriend commits suicide" Boyfriend... do you really mean a boyfriend or just some who is interested in her? I bring this up because you said she didn't have a date for prom.

At the end... "before its too late"... is it possible to tell us when the too late is, or why? I assume it has something to do with the hex. It might add some interest to the query if you let us know about the "ticking clock."

Overall I like it.
JQ

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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by Clio » December 29th, 2009, 1:11 pm

It sounds really good!

I think you have over-used the name Christie though - you could replace it with 'she' in places.

Also I wouldn't end with 'Would you be interested in the manuscript' - I'd be inclined to put something more formal.

I love the way you have packed so much into so few words.
It certainly makes me want to read it!!

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Re: All thoughts are welcome...Query**

Post by shadow » December 29th, 2009, 2:25 pm

Thanks alot guys! I am working har to rework the query with all the great advice you gave me. And the ending is quite twisted, I am just not so sure I should give it away... maybe i will. hmmm.
All things writing, visit my blog http://arielemerald.blogspot.com/

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