Jul 26, 2010

QUERY- REMEMBERING YOU -- women's fiction first revision

If Genna thought returning home after a long absence would be hell, she would have brought along her hand-basket. Wanting to celebrate the good news about her fabulous job offer, Genna realizes it’s time to relinquish her past demons and go home.

Not even there five minutes, it comes back to haunt her in the form of her ex-fiancĂ© and her unresolved feelings for him. What he did a decade ago still twists her heart and when he asks for forgiveness, Genna decides to let the past go and move on. However, when Genna’s cousin reveals long buried secrets about her ex- Genna wonders if she made a mistake. “People don’t change” Angie says, but Genna has seen it happen in more than one person since returning. Including herself.

Unexpectedly, she discovers a promising new love in the arms of a man she once despised. Her family is pushing her into this new relationship but as she wrestles with her feelings, she makes the unbelievable mistake of sleeping with her ex-. Keeping the two men from finding out about each other proves to be impossible as they both show up for a date on the same night.

Moreover, her new promotion grows cold as she faces a family member’s health crisis no one saw coming. She wonders if she should skip the advancement and remain where she never wanted to leave or go and live the life she always thought she wanted. Genna, torn between two worlds, her decision to remain is the only one possible. However, which love will capture her heart, old or new?

I am seeking representation for REMEMBERING YOU, a completed work of women’s fiction at 87,000 words.

Thank you everyone, in advance for your comments.


Anonymous Author said...

At the opening, I'm confused. Going "home" can mean many things, and I get later on that Genna's returning to her hometown --or the house she grew up in?-- but it should be clearer.

There's a little bit of a book jacket problem here. Book jackets try to conceal details in vague language (eg "What he did a decade ago...) but queries need to be specific.

What *did* he do? Where has she gone home to? What is the job offer? What long-buried secrets? What health crisis for what family member? Etc.

gj said...

Hiding the story seems to be the new trend in queries. Why, oh why, won't you tell us what the story's about?

Look at the first few lines and how they don't say anything.

We've got a woman "returning home"-- generic, don't know where or why or even if, as noted before, it's metaphorical or phusical -- and a "long absence"which could be a week of grueling travel for someone who hates to travel as much as I do, or ten years or fifty years -- and "good news about a job" that could be her first-ever job at minimum wage, b/c she's always had a sugar daddy instead of job until now, or it could be the dream job, still at minimum wage but for a cause she believes in, or as CEO of some mega-corporation, which other people might think is actually bad news, but at least it's for more than minimum wage -- and "reliquished demons" -- which, again, could be literal or figurative, and I have no idea what they are in either case, so it's meaningless -- and her ex-fiancé is haunting her -- again, literally or figuratively? and how is he doing it and why -- and unresolved feelings that could be either love or regret that she hadn't actually killed him so that he would be a ghost haunting her now instead of merely a routine but corporeal jerk stalking her.

You're probably trying too hard. Simplify and clarify. Forget the pretty, forget the lyrical, forget the cute. Just tell a clear story with specifics that are unique to this protagonist and this story and this conflict: protagonist wants X, because Y, but Z, and the situation escalates.

Anonymous said...

Thank you thank you thank you. I am trying too hard. The first one was really vague. I thought this was better. I know what I want to say, it's just not coming out.

Once more and I think with your suggestions, I'll have it.

Thanks again. You guys rock.

Dominique said...

I feel that from this query I have a reasonable sense of the voice of the story. That's good.

I also have a sense of the problems that the character will face in the story and why these are major issues. That's also good.

However, to a certain extent, I feel like I've getting slapped in the face with all the issues and without much grounding. That's very off-putting for a reader.