Nov 12, 2009

Query: 7 Days to Redemption

When his family is killed in a tragic accident, Pastor Nathan Hanlin turns away from his faith believing that God has turned His back on him. But as the balance of power between good and evil shifts in the small town of Somerville, Nathan realizes his crisis of faith may be to blame for the demonic activity that has been happening all too often lately.

Old journals meant as guides by the previous church pastors reveal the secret to Somerville; the town was established as a refuge for ostracized Christians. Nathan’s denial of God has fractured the protective shield placed on the town. As the cracks widen, the demonic episodes become more frequent, and Nathan realizes he needs to step up and become the man of God his town needs him to be.

As Nathan stands firm, willing to return to his roots, he finds a truth that could destroy him. He must decide whether to look past hurts and recommit to his faith, or turn his back on God for good and allow the darkness to prevail.

7 Days to Redemption is a spiritual thriller complete at 75,000 words.

I won the 2005 Word Alive Publishing Contest for my novel Once Upon A Dream and I hold a degree in theology.

5 comments:

Gina Logue said...

I love this story. Totally hooked.

The first sentence in the second paragraph sounds a bit awkward to me. How about simplifying to “Old journals kept by the previous church pastors reveal Somerville was established as a refuge for ostracized Christians.”?

Was the protective shield from God? I think you should mention how it got there.

The first sentence in the third paragraph sounds awkward too. How about “As Nathan returns to his roots, he finds a truth that could destroy him.”?

Best wishes.

gj said...

Very well done.

Bane of Anubis said...

Ditto

AmyB said...

I actually wanted more specifics. I wasn't sure what was meant by "the balance of power between good and evil shifts" and "demonic activity." Are people getting possessed? Are demons walking down Main Street? What sort of demonic activity? I'd also like to know how Nathan connects the activity to his own actions, but if that's too complicated to explain in a query pitch, you can probably leave it out.

What is meant by "As Nathan stands firm, willing to return to his roots" mean? "Stands firm" usually means resisting something, so it felt awkward to me paired with "willing." Maybe "As Nathan stands firm against the [demons/evil/whatever]" would be more clear.

The query does do a very good job of giving me the general shape of the story, which I think is the most important part.

BTW, the first sentence needs a comma after "faith."

RCWriterGirl said...

I've never read a spiritual thriller, but I must admit, I liked the query.

The first paragraph is great. A man of the church who loses faith in God and realizes this may be causing demonic activity. Sounds cool.

I think the last sentence of the second paragraph could be combined with the third paragraph. If you look at them together, they set us up for the ending, twice. That last sentence in graf 2 says that Nathan needs to step up. Then, the first sentenc in graf 3 says Nathan is willing to return to his roots, but finds a truh that could destroy him. I kind of felt like these sentences too closely echoed each other (it felt repetitive) and could be condensed into one.

Lastly, I'm not sure if your sentence that tells us what's at stake works. It's clear. But, it's also a no-brainer. No way a man of the cloth lets darkness rule the world. He's clearly going to recommit. I'd almost rather see something along the lines of time. Will his decision to recomitt to his faith come in time to save the world from darkness, or has he waited too long to stop the demons from taking over? And I know what I wrote isn't very good, but something along that lines. Something that makes me wonder, ooh, can he do it? Will he make it? The way you've written it now, there is no question of whether he'll return to his faith. He's realized he needs to step up and be the man of God his town needs him to be. So, he's going to return.

Anyway. Interesting story. Good luck with your query.