Dec 2, 2009

Revised query--DARK ABYSS

Click here to read the original query.

I want to thank everyone for the helpful tips. I hope this sums it up short and to the point while at the same time answering some questions.

Dear Blah Blah,

Personalized opening.

Akali is a witch. She just doesn’t know it yet.

That is until she unwittingly meets Isaac who nabs her right from her home. Fortunately, Isaac has other plans besides rape and murder. He’s a vampire desperate for her help. With that shocking news, Akali’s normal life vanishes and is replaced with a world of dangerous creatures whose soul intent is stopping her from discovering her true power. Together with Isaac, whether she wants him there or not, Akali finds herself on a whirlwind journey to stay alive while trying to free his family from an ancient curse.

DARK ABYSS is a paranormal romance complete at 105,000 words and available upon your request. Thank you in advance for your time and consideration.

Closing personal info.

4 comments:

Kat O'Keeffe said...

I like the idea here, but a couple things stood out. First, you may want to take off the "yet" at the end of the second sentence. The 'yet' reads funny with 'that is until...' because it's a bit redundant.

Also, I would reword "Isaac has other plans besides rape and murder." because that sounds like he has other plans in addition to rape and murder. Perhaps something like "...who nabs her right from her home. But Isaac isn't interested in ransom; he's a vampire desperate for her help."

You may want to mention why Akali stays with Isaac to help him. Is he holding her/threatening her? Or is he protecting her in exchange for her help?

This also leaves me some questions: What happens if Akali discovers her true power and why is this a bad thing for those who don't want her to discover it? Are Isaac's family members vampires, or is his family still living? What does the curse do?

You don't have to answer all of these in your query, but agents look for specifics-- what is unique about your story?

Rick Daley said...

This is more specific than the first query, and you have a strong hook, but parts of it are still very vague. I think you should be direct in what you mean to say. For example:

Fortunately, Isaac has other plans besides rape and murder

What ARE his plans? Don't use up word-count to tell us what they aren't.

whose soul intent

Did you mean soul, as in spirit, or sole, as in only? If you meant it as spirit (the intent of his soul) that's clever, but can easily be misconstrued as a mistake.

stopping her from discovering her true power.

How? Through their own magic? Kill her? Imprison her? How much peril is she in?

Together with Isaac, whether she wants him there or not

Does she or doesn't she? I understand the euphamism, but it's cliche. Be specific. And if she really wants nothing to do with him, why is she trying to help him?

It looks like you have an original story in there. Keep trying and you'll find the best way to tell us about it.

The best advice I ever received, and which I gladly impart on to you, is to try to boil your whole story down into one sentence.

Rachel Hamm said...

I'm going to take a liberty and re-write the first couple of sentences of your second paragraph for you:
"That is until Isaac, a vampire desperate for her help, nabs her from her home."

This is just a little tighter and leaves you room to answer a few questions like, Why is Issac desperate for her help? How does she discover her true power? Who is trying to prevent her from discovering it?

"dangerous creatures whose soul intent is stopping her..." who are these dangerous creatures and why do they want to prevent her from discovering who she is?

"whirlwind journey" is cliche. Cut it. You don't want agents thinking your book is full of cliches.

"Akali finds herself on a whirlwind journey to stay alive while trying to free his family from an ancient curse." Is the "his family" here Isaac's family? This is the first indication of what Isaac's problem may be- it needs to be moved up in the query so we get an indication of Isaac's motivation.

Short is not always to the point. Expand a little more so the agent gets the unique details of your story, not just the generalization. Right now nothing is unique, it sounds like an idea for a story, not a summary of a story that's already been written.

Okay, I hope this helps. Take what works for you and ignore the rest. Query writing is hard, I hate it! It's harder than writing the actual book. You're off to a good start, good luck!

~Rach

Ebyss said...

Thank you all for the help. I really appreciate it.

Now for round three. LOL!!