Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday Mania--Query Letter

One of our readers submitted a query letter for critique. Feel free to make comments, but please keep them constructive.

Critique Archive 0032:

Dear Agent,

Overwhelmed by the paparazzi hanging out in her hedges, twenty-something Abigail Kelly banishes herself to secluded Seaside, Florida for much needed R&R. But her band’s manager wants her back in LA—pronto. She needs to record, and there’s that photo shoot, and those interviews…

Abby ignores him—in search of peace, and the perfect combination of anti-depressant and skinny jeans to take the edge off her crazy life. Instead she finds Todd—who understands her better than anyone…and likes her anyway. As they laugh and swim and fall in love over the summer, Abby remembers life before the spotlight, and is reminded that there is more to life than hollow fame.

Back in LA three months later, Abby manages to balance work and life. But it’s short-lived with a new record deal looming, and an overseas touring schedule into the next millennium. Sensing the oncoming pressure, Todd tries to help, but this only drives them apart. It comes to a head when Todd fights with her manager as Abby stands by. Even after Abby tries to smooth things over, Todd goes home to Florida. Alone. And her manager is thrilled.

Now Abby is really on her own—facing a boss who is taking advantage of her guilt and workaholic tendencies. Pushed to the limit, she finally snaps, and for the first time in her life, she’s determined to stand on her own, and to stand up for what she wants: control of her life.

A work of women’s fiction, ABBY ROAD is complete at 95,000 words. My Bachelors Degree is in English. I belong to the Writers’ Guild of Texas.

Thank you for your generous time. The complete manuscript of ABBY ROAD is available upon request.

Yours, etc...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday Mania--Query Letter

Two of our readers submitted a query letter for critique. Feel free to make comments, but please keep them constructive.

Critique Archive 0030:

To The Editor,

Eden has a new, blue umbrella, and its not your average ho-hum, every-day umbrella,this is the kind of umbrella that can sweep a girl off her feet! Which is just what happens to Eden in this adventre story for kids aged about 2 to 5 years old.

I see from my research that you are interested in fresh imaginative picture books,and I hope this manuscript will fit your list well.

My completed manuscript is XXX words, and is enclosed along with an SASE.

Thank you for your consideration,

The Author


Critique Archive 0031:

Dear Agent:

On the game board of Ancient Greece, mortals are despised, but not dispensable, creatures, for it is their worship that is the basis of the Gods’ power. Robbed of this power and stripped of her Godhood by her sister Hera, abandoned by her lover Zeus, Demeter finds herself in the position of a pawn, moved hither and thither by the Gods’ whims.

Living as a mortal, Demeter must bring her child into the world and raise her without all the privilege and power she possessed as one of Olympus' chosen. A mother Goddess who has no desire to be a mother, Demeter grows increasingly bitter under the burden of motherhood and her mortal life. She vents her anger on the one she should love best, her daughter, Persephone.

Persephone seeks solace from her mother’s wrath in the forest surrounding the village in which they live. On one such foray, Persephone plucks a narcissus growing at the mouth of a cavern. The cavern spews out a chariot bearing Persephone’s fate in its basket; Hades, ruler of the dead. He abducts Persephone, carries her to his realm and forces her to share her body and her bed with him.

Frantic at Persephone’s loss, desperate, now that her daughter is beyond her reach, to recompense for all the ways she wronged Persephone, Demeter sets out on a quest for Persephone’s freedom that takes her from Poseidon’s depths to Olympus’s heights. Zeus restores Demeter’s Godhood, but refuses to command Hades to release Persephone.

With a wealth of power once again at her disposal Demeter is free to manipulate the mortal world in any way necessary to gain her daughter’s freedom. Her only consideration is how many mortals it will be necessary to destroy before Zeus feels his throne tilt beneath him and comes to heel.

As Demeter schemes for her release in the Upper World, Persephone formulates plan after plan of escape in the Under; all of which Hades thwarts. However, daily pressed into proximity with this dark God, Persephone finds his impassive exterior hides a kind man, whose need for love and compassion surpass even her own. Unaware of Demeter’s cruel plan and what her continued absence from the Upper World means to the mortals who dwell there, Persephone begins to wonder if escape is truly what she wants.

SEEDS, a historical fantasy, is my first novel.

Thank you for your time and consideration.



Monday, November 16, 2009

Monday Mania--Query Letter

One of our readers submitted a query letter for critique. Feel free to make comments, but please keep them constructive.

Critique Archive 0029:

Dear XXXX,

“Waves” is a completed 96,000 word Young Adult novel that shares the emotional story of a young girl as she adjusts to big changes in her life. Alyssa's mother passed away the previous fall and her dad has recently remarried a woman who has two children of her own. Alyssa is having a hard time adjusting to this new family, especially to her attractive step-sister, Jessica, who is just one year older than Alyssa. She is determined, however, not to let jealousy get in her way. She will have the best summer of her life . . . or will she?

Alyssa Chamberlain is determined that this summer will be one filled with romance and fun, unlike summers past, as she returns to her family’s beach house for their annual three-month vacation. But, things will be different this year for other reasons. Alyssa quickly succeeds in her mission to have an amazing summer, hanging out with old friends and falling in love with someone new, Ethan Andrews. But, as Ethan begins to constantly argue with his older brother, Mason, it becomes obvious they are hiding something. Alyssa struggles to understand their tense relationship and swears to herself that she will uncover their family secret. However, what they are hiding goes beyond her wildest imagination and her acceptance of it can only go so far as she tries to comprehend exactly what the two brothers and their dad are up to. It's a mystery that she insists on solving, even if it means losing her first true-love.

She discovers that they have been drugging girls and taking their blood. They then alter it in a way so that, when injected into themselves, it dramatically slows their aging process. Can her relationship with Ethan move past this deception? She isn't sure it can when she learns that Ethan's brother is actually his father, and who she knew as his father is actually his grandpa. The only thread of hope she can cling to is that Ethan himself hasn't been injected with the stolen blood. However, that could change at any time. Vampires aren't the only ones who want your blood.

“Waves” is my first novel, which I have put many hours of writing and research into in order to create an incredible situation and make it become feasible. I am currently working on a sequel so that my readers can continue to follow Alyssa’s journey as she starts her senior year of high school with new self-confidence.

I have enclosed a synopsis (???, the first three chapters???) and a SASE for your reply. If you are interested, I would be happy to send the completed manuscript.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.



Monday, November 2, 2009

Monday Mania--Query Letter

One of our readers submitted a query letter for critique. Feel free to make comments, but please keep them constructive.

Critique Archive 0028:

Agent Name
Agent Address


Dear _____________,

To most, the word ‘coma’ conveys dreaded images: a living but lifeless body, a trapped, dormant mind. But is the mind trapped and dormant? What if, severed from physical ties, our consciousness migrates to another state—a holding place—a paradise, or purgatory? And do the lies we’ve lived and told ourselves determine which state it is?

In my 90,000 word novel, Where Paradise Lies, brothers David and William Jenner seek redemption. Purpose and peace elude them until a final tragedy strikes, bringing death to one and leaving the other in a coma.

Waking on a transcendental island, unable to remember who he is, the adventure begins. Is it William or David searching for the paradise his physical life never held? Will the arrival of a mysterious woman destroy or mend what is left of his life before the coma ends?

Currently, I have two books in print, Orinoco Intrigue and The Garden Gate, published by Latter Day Specialties. I am a member of the Absolutely Write chapter of the League of Utah Writers, in Ogden, Utah, and have led a critique group for ten years.

Enclosed is the first chapter of my novel, as well as a synopsis and SASE for your convenience. Thank you for your consideration.