One of our readers submitted a query letter for critique. Feel free to make comments, but please keep them constructive.
Critique Archive 0043:
Because of your interest in young adult fiction with a historical bent, I’m sending you the first chapter of my novel Beyond the Fortune-Teller’s Tent.
Petra Baron, a senior at Arroyo Oaks High School, enters a fortune-teller’s tent at a Renaissance faire and exits into Elizabethan England. This detour into the past radically alters her carefully laid future plans. Despite her ambivalence towards her father’s recent remarriage, Petra is desperate to return to her life in Orange County, California. The seventeenth century presents all sorts of challenges -- a gypsy hunt, a demon dog named Black Shuck, and an overwhelming attraction to Emory Ravenswood. She also meets Friar Rohan, who challenges her to ask a new set of questions, “Instead of asking how, you should ask why you are here.”
When Petra returns to the here and now, she’s reunited with her newly created stepfamily emotionally as well as physically because of the lessons of love and loss learned in the Golden Age. She’s lost Emory. Or has she? Centuries apart but drawn together by extraordinary circumstances, can Petra and Emory survive the test of time? A first in a series, Beyond the Fortune-teller’s Tent is an 80,000 word novel.
I’ve been writing for a number of years. My second novel, The Promise, received an honorable mention in an international contest. My third novel, Hailey's Comments, was a semi-finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest. My fifth novel, Stealing Mercy, placed second at the LDS Storymaker’s Conference first chapter contest in the historical category.
I studied English Literature at Brigham University and at BYU’s International Center in London. I’ve written for local newspapers and political campaigns. As former chapter president of a charitable organization, I’m frequently asked to speak publicly and I write my own addresses.
Currently, I’m president of Orange County Fictionaires, a local writing group. Neal Shusterman, award winning young adult author, and prolific romance writer Jacqueline Diamond, both friends and fellow Fictionaires, a have promised to speak kindly in my work’s behalf. Raymond Obstfeld, bestselling novelist, called my writing ‘intelligent, witty and strong,’ and Charles Salzberg, director of The New York Writer’s Workshops, was ‘impressed by my writing and characters.’ I hope you’ll feel the same. I look forward to hearing from you and I thank you for your time and consideration.